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Mariatu Kargbo

Mariatu Kargbo: The Incredible Founder Behind Gazelle

Gazelle is a thriving clothing and accessories store known for its attentiveness to rich colors and beautifully complex patterns. Offering modern fashion that goes well beyond today’s typical designs including a gift card option., Gazelle is a treat for its customers, who embody grace, elegance, and creativity. Behind this fashion-forward brand is its founder, Mariatu Kargbo—a successful entrepreneur and talented educator. In this article, we will discuss how Mariatu created her iconic brand.


Although Gazelle was formed in 2017, Mariatu Kargbo’s story began earlier, well before her fashion sense took her to new heights. Her story began where she was born—Sierra Leone in West Africa.

During her early childhood years, Mariatu arrived in the United States for the first time and attended elementary school, middle school, and high school in Virginia. These formative years played a key role in her journey, ultimately leading her to open her very own store as a proud participant in Virginia’s business economy.

After she graduated from high school, she went on to obtain her first of several degrees from George Mason University. She graduated from university with a Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing, a Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing, and a Master’s Degree in Nursing and Family Practice Nursing. A firm believer in lifelong learning, she worked hard to gather knowledge that she could use to improve lives. Later on, she received a law degree from Concord Law School.


The next stage of Mariatu’s journey led her to the workforce, where she started as a registered nurse in a Medical Surgical Nursing Unit, as well as an Intensive Care Unit (ICU). With a passion for education and a strong desire to serve her community, she continued to look for new opportunities to help the people around her improve their lives. Her passion for motivating and educating others on how to follow their dreams continued to push her forward. Working as a family nurse practitioner ultimately inspired her to start a nursing school, so she founded Global Health.


Moving forward, Mariatu found a new way to support those around her—through her lifelong love of fashion. Driven by her desire to help people be fashionable, cultured, and bold, she founded Gazelle and began to change the fashion world forever through exceptional designs and her love of African clothing. With an unmatched fashion sense, she inspires others to stand out through their clothing and presence.


Mariatu Kargbo wears many hats while supporting daily operations for Gazelle, but she continues to emulate a deep passion for fashion and works tirelessly to bring enticing wardrobe collections to her customers. Each day, she strives to innovate and enhance, giving Gazelle’s customers the chance to dress their best and show off their most empowered selves!


This designer brand provides signature design, an infusion of unique prints, and passion unlike any other. Each item is a part of Mariatu’s mind and culture, with her favorite being a traditional waist bead, which consists of a stack of five beads made with her favorite colors. Her waist beads represent sensuality, femininity, and spiritual well-being, and you can find them here.


To this day, Mariatu Kargbo’s golden principle behind Gazelle continues to ring true. She says, “Let the outfit do the work, our customers deserve it.”

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