Mlabbas US is a new branch of Mlabbas gift shop, which opened in Amman, Jordan in 2010. Since its inception, Mlabbas has always promoted the work of local and regional Arab artists. Through its merchandise, it aims to represent glimpses into Arab culture and society in a fun, stylish, and often provocative way.
Mlabbas is an arts and design store that prints artwork on cloths, textiles, paper, ceramic, and other materials. We commission local and regional Arab artists to produce original work that speaks to important sociopolitical issues, as well as promote Arab culture and society.
Mlabbas, the Name
Mlabbas is an Arabic word which means “to cover”. The word is used in many Arab countries to refer to the sugar-coated almonds or chocolates distributed at festive occasions, such as weddings and graduations. However, our use of the word refers to us 'covering' people with clothes. With T-shirts as our main product, we have now expanded to several categories of funky merchandise, including kufiyas, tote bags, mugs, coasters, phone covers, stickers, magnets, and more.
Our American Story
Mlabbas US was founded by Imad Shawa and Rana Yaacoub in the fall of 2019. Imad and Rana are actually in-laws—their respective partners are siblings. Imad lives in Amman, Jordan, and Rana lives in Dearborn, Michigan. Dearborn, in fact, is considered the “capital of Arab America”. By establishing a second home in the U.S., Mlabbas can now deliver its funky Arab pop-cultural merchandise worldwide.