Modern Natured – a face of Africa’s luxury beads

Emma Okyere, a brilliant designer from Ghana, born in the Netherlands, conceived the idea of a high-end fashion house, and decided to launch it in Atlanta, Georgia in the United States where she’s now based. 

She saw a clear need for the luxury beauty and fashion company, and resolved with the launching of what eventually became “Modern Natured” in 2022, drawing on her more than 15 years of expertise.

She also knew she would use “all the gifts that God had given her” to bring her vision to life, when TheAfricanDream spoke with her. 

Innovative beaded couture 

In time, the Black-owned company transformed from a beauty company to a luxury fashion label particularly through its innovative waist beads. In order to create these “Innovative Beaded Couture,” it blends traditional African beading techniques with modern designs.

Glass beads that have been recycled and a range of jewels are used to create the brand’s handcrafted jewellery and clothing. It also uses a collection of colourful Kente textiles for its ready-to-wear hoods, and other fashion wears.

Apart from a luxury range of couture and skin care under a custom brand, Modern Natured also sells a carefully selected assortment of cosmetics, fragrances, skincare, and aromatherapy items.

The Ghanaian-Dutch-American brand has been designing innovative waist beads since 2022, utilising the finest recycled glass beads available in Ghana. For its masterpieces, Okyere occasionally hires local Ghanaian beadworkers as it is a means of supporting the growth of small businesses.

TheAfricanDream learned that Modern Natured worked with Krobo’s Cedi Beads, local kente weavers, leather suppliers, and tailors. The brand also debossed the company’s logo in collaboration with InkIt Ghana Limited.

Nevertheless, Modern Natured’s traditional Ghanaian waist beads gained international recognition quite rapidly because of its eye-catching and distinctive designs, cultural importance, and sustainability.

“Ghana is very rich in culture and traditions. It’s not a coincidence that I started working with local Ghanaian artisans to fuse cultural traditional beads with my innovative, futuristic beading concepts and methods. It was by God’s divine intention. God exposed and allowed Modern Natured to exist in fashion to bring Ghana to the front of high fashion,” said Okyere, founder & CEO of Modern Natured to in a conversation.

The big break

Modern Natured had its significant international recognition in July 2022 through an invitation to work with many swimwear designers at Miami Swim Week to incorporate Modern Natured’s waist beads into their collections. 

She had her waist beads collection on runway models representing brands like Kanawa, Zoelle BYBS, Meredith Ashley, Cyar, Peach Plie, Audrey Monae, Cordee Cases, Surturban, Michael Bailey, Hott Commodity Eyewear, and Ash Hoffman.

Shortly after the Miami Swim Week presentation, Modern Natured in the same year received another invitation to display its debut fashion line, ‘The Genesis Collection’ at the recent Paris Fashion Week (PFW) 2022 at La Galerie Bourbon, Paris. Its display went alongside over forty global fashion powerhouses at the September/October edition.

Following its debut successes, Modern Natured also unveiled its remarkable “Beaded Couture” luxury brand at the Paris Fashion Week SS23, last year. Beaded Couture exhibits the masterful artistry of recycled glass beads, which are carefully beaded into astonishing couture pieces in Ghana. 

The fringes of Beaded Couture became stunning, with adaptable luxury pieces that can be worn in a variety of ways, from a striking, sophisticated statement necklace to an opulent, royal beachwear cover-up. This adaptability encourages a more environmentally friendly way of dressing, raising the bar for sustainable luxury goods. 

Renowned publications

Beaded Couture’s iconic neckpieces and detachable waist beads are innovative designs that provide flexibility and adaptability. In an interview with Forbes last week, Okyere explained the uniqueness of her brand’s products. 

“Our signature item, the Traditional tie-on waist beads, is expertly fashioned by hand from recycled glass beads that are imported from Ghana. Since then, we’ve added removable waist beads and the Beaded Couture line exclusively to our inventory. Our waist beads are unique jewellery that features small to medium-sized glass beads delicately strung on numerous threads to gracefully embrace the abdomen and hip area” said Okyere to Forbes. 

“This is made possible by the sustainability of the material as well as our innovative method and design. In addition to being ornaments, they can be used as a means of self-expression, a scale, and a statement piece of clothing. Each piece narrates a story of sustainability, craftsmanship, and a harmonious blend of tradition and modernity,” she added. 

These exceptional designs and pieces have caught the eye of renowned publications, including Harper’s Bazaar, British Vogue, Glamour, Elle, Marie Claire, and more. Every exhibition and feature highlights the remarkable goal of Modern Natured, making a lasting impact on the fields of sustainability and fashion.

“Presently, Modern Natured is a pioneer in creating eco-friendly clothing with recycled glass. One of its outstanding products is the Modern Natured Cropped Hoods, which are crafted from Ghana’s royal fabric, the kente cloth, by hand using the best leather,” said Okyere to

“Those who effortlessly combine luxury and nature are cordially invited to Modern Natured. You’re advancing the circular economy with every piece you add to your collection while also projecting sophistication and dedication to environmental concern,” she added. 

The detachable waist bead design by Modern Natured is not only versatile enough to put around the neck as an ornament, but also colourful and entertaining.


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