Farai Simoyi was born in London, England, the child of Zimbabwean parents. She lived in Harare, Zimbabwe, where she got her first taste of textiles and fashion, from her aunt’s lingerie company at age five. Her aunt would give her scraps of fabric, which Farai would sew together by hand to make clothes for both her and her dolls. And, thus, her passion for fashion was born.
Leaving Zimbabwe as a 10 year old, Farai headed to Morgantown, West Virginia with her family, where she eventually attended West Virginia University. There she studied Fashion & Design and started to hone the skills she began learning as a child in Africa. After graduation, Farai spent a summer furthering her knowledge, studying at Nuovo Accademia Di Belle Arti in Milan, Italy.
After her summer in Italy, Farai moved to New York City, where she hoped to be able to combine the knowledge and styles gained from her experiences in Zimbabwe, West Virginia, and Italy. Starting as an assistant, Farai accepted her role as one of support, but knew it was a role she would soon grow out of. Indeed, she was quickly promoted to technical designer, where she was exposed to the cut-throat technical underside of fashion, coming to appreciate that there is a science to the art. Struggling to find a balance between working for a large brand and working on projects of her own, Farai was also featured on a television show, TLC’s “I’ve Got Nothing To Wear!” In addition, Farai was invited to participate in, “Style Wars,” a style competition that presents young designers and their Avant Garde designs to the public.
With her dues paid in the technical fashion circle, Farai was able to break into the forefront and was hired as a designer for a major denim company. Seeing her designs worn by the masses on the streets of New York only further galvanized her drive to bring her vision to the public through her own line.
Farai Simoyi debuted her Spring/Summer 2011 collection at NYC Fashion Week in September 2010. Calling her new brand ‘FARAI’ a representation of Soft/Steel/Bohemian”, it is a symbiotic juxtaposition of the styles and experiences gained in Africa, Appalachia, Europe and the streets of NYC: woman, warrior, wayward traveler.