The Cornrow was founded by two sisters, Kemi (big sis) and Lara (little sis) as a love letter to their dual African and Caribbean heritage. The sisters have a passion for both sourcing and creating homeware and lifestyle products that represent themselves as modern Black British women. They hunt the globe (both on-foot and on-line!) for quality products which centre them and their families, in a joyful (and affordable!) way.

Meet our co-founders

Kemi - Founder



Lara - Founder



Kemi left a career in investment banking to launch The Cornrow as she realised it was the right time to follow her heart! She lives and breathes both The Cornrow products and philosophy at her home, which is on Instagram, @cottagenoir

Lara is an accomplished digital marketing professional, ranking IKEA and Cadbury among clients. Her digital skills are invaluable for The Cornrow as are her product research skills.

The Cornrow is a truly family affair, with mother Yasmin, providing limitless creative advice and undertaking The Cornrow gift-wrapping service (check out her wrapping skills on insta (@yasminwrapstar). Yasmin’s partner Jonathan, formerly of Chelsea Design Centre, provides invaluable retail advice and product guidance.​ ​


However it’s not just product. Do check out our Pinterest boards if you would like to know more about the visions that drive The Cornrow. We pin around:

  • Black Joy and Normalising the Everyday Black Experience - a topic we feel it’s important to spotlight when so much conversation around The Black Experience is centred on pain and survival. We thrive too!

  • Harness Ohsun Energy - Inspired by Oshun, the West African Deity for Femininity, Sensuality and Love, Oshun provides the spiritual energy that drives The Cornrow. She represents all women who are seeking to control their own destinies, enjoy their sensuality and own the space they inhabit!​​

  • Afro Aristo meets Caribbean Nan Chic - if you follow Cottage Noir (which you absolutely should be) - you will know all about our interiors aesthetic which is inspired African and Caribbean heritage and maintaining a connection to our ancestors.​

  • The Cornrow - and of course a board we fill with products you can shop on The Cornrow!

The Cornrow Symbols

Every product we source for The Cornrow is given one or more of our four symbols. The symbols summarise what we care about the most and help our customers know how they are making the world a better place. We have based our symbols on ancient Ghanaian Adinkra symbols.

These symbols are:

  • Black Owned - These are brands (including The Cornrow own brand) which are predominately owned by a Black person. In an ideal world, this wouldn’t matter. But in the world we live in, we feel it’s important we do what we can to try and redress the institutional racism that has impacted Black people and their businesses in the UK and beyond.​

  • Made In Africa - A key part of our vision is representing the stories of our African ancestors. In practical terms, this means supporting artisans and businesses based in Africa by selling their products. Often the artisans are under paid and over-looked. And the businesses are often working under severe constraints. This symbol celebrates (and pays!) these hardworking brands.

  • Eco Friendly - We consider sustainability in every part of our supply chain. This symbol means the product has gone to extra lengths to minimise its impact on the Planet.​

  • One of A Kind - These are unique or limited run items that are often handmade or vintage. Get them before they’re gone.
Thanks for reading and all your support so far! Do drop us a line on team@thecornrow.com with any questions or comments, we will be sure to get back to you!!