From Wall Street to Fashion Designer: How Diarra Bousso is changing the fashion industry one equation at a time

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Diarra Bousso, a Senegalese math teacher creates fashion prints from math’s equations. Mind blowing as it sounds, the self-described “Creative Mathematician” merges her undying love for math’s and algorithms to create multiple prints in bold colors.

Born and raised in Senegal, Diarra moved to Norway at 16 years old to attend the United World College for High School. Without being able to speak the foreign language (English or Spanish) like her classmates, she overcame this problem in a matter of months – found her groove, made new friends and graduated after two years abroad. She later earned a master’s degree in mathematics at Stanford University.

As a teen, Diarra had always wanted to be rich – so after graduation, she went straight to Wall Street – taking a job as a bond trader earning six figures.

It was after a devastating accident that almost took her life and the depression that followed that she found peace drawing and writing.

To Forbes she says “I started drawing and drawing and drawing, I would also write, write, write I became so prolific, so I started a Tumblr page. I had nothing better to do …….”

After quitting her job at Wall Street in 2013 and registering her fashion business, Diarra launched DAKAR Boutique in 2013 alongside two labels: DIARRABLU and Diarra Bousso. Though, Diarra still teaches and conducts research there in San Francisco, her time in the States also reinforced her desire to create a collection that celebrates those Senegal crafts like her family had done –  as a child watching her family carry on time-honored crafts in leather, metal, and jewelry.

Diarrablu is a high-end contemporary lifestyle brand founded by Diarra Bousso. With majority of the pieces from Dakar, Senegal and a mission of sustainability the brand pieces are known for being convertible, adjustable and wearable across various sizes for a prolonged lifecycle.

Talking to OKAYAfrica, how Diarra uses equation to create designs is incredible. “I use equation to graph lines, curves, parabolas, hyperbolas, basically anything that can be represented by a math equation and graphed. Then I focus on where those lines and curves meet, which creates kind of random shapes. We hand paint those shapes using a color scheme that I’ve chosen.”

Her collections have been showcased during New York and Paris Fashion Weeks. And also in Forbes, Vogue, Glamour, Elle Magazine, The New York Times amongst others. Diarra’s recent swimwear collection was worn by Kendall Jenner in a Vogue USA edition. Her famous db bags have been seen on celebrities like Akin and various First Ladies globally.

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