Born in Brooklyn, New York, Moneifa could be considered the true American success story- with a twist. She graduated from St. John’s University with a Bachelor’s degree in Finance and started a career in financial services at one of the largest institutions in the world. But there is so much more to her.
Growing up around and immersed in her Caribbean culture, Moneifa was drawn to the extravagant costumes worn during Carnival, especially those crafted from strappy bikinis and monokinis. She began designing these costumes, and after an unfortunate incident with a seamstress, she knew she needed to sew her designs on her own. Using a sewing machine from her mother, she taught herself how to sew bikini bottoms and eventually began sewing all types of swimwear silhouettes.
A lover of travel and world culture, she began to design and hand sew swimsuits inspired by her trips across the globe. But it was a trip to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, where she fully experienced ‘swim culture’, that solidified her vision. Shortly after that trip, she enrolled in the Fashion Institute of Technology to learn technical swimwear design and manufacturing, all while still maintaining her day job in finance. Then in the summer of 2019 Chéri House, the luxury swimwear boutique was born.
The development of the Chéri House brand and its launch designs were in full swing when the COVID-19 pandemic hit. Not deterred and through remote supervision, the line was produced, manufactured, by a woman-owned factory in Brazil. Beyond labor of love, Chéri House was born from a deep passion for travel, culture, fashion, and style.