The Ethiopian-born model has walked for some of the world’s biggest fashion houses, including Carolina Herrera and Balenciaga, and added Kanye’s label to the list in February (16) during his New York Fashion Week presentation. "It was the kind of project you just get on board with because it's amazing and crazy, you know?" she smiled to popsugar.com. "That's sort of what Yeezy was - it was different... he's changing the way you do shows." Like Kanye, Liya has also started designing as a secondary career. The model is behind Lemlem, a brand set up to bring stability to women in her home country of Ethiopia. As well as producing colourful designs perfect for city life and beach holidays, Lemlem also donates five per cent of sales to Liya’s maternal health foundation. “I think the consumer is becoming much more demanding in wanting to know how things are done,” she said of worker’s conditions. “I think we are all going towards that as human beings — to be a part of something bigger, to participate, and to give to something that has impact. Brands like us fit very much in that space." The 38-year-old admits she loves it when she sees people wearing her clothes, although he friends have to stop Liya going up to people in the street to tell them. The brand has gone from strength to strength since it first launched, and has collaborated with bigger names like J.Crew. “It either comes from me liking the product and reaching out to the brand - or vice versa," she smiled. "I'm lucky enough to have the support of the fashion business, and so that's how we function. It's very organic."
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