Africa Fashion Guide
A social enterprise promoting sustainability within Africa's fashion and textile industry.



Fashion

April 3rd, 2012

Mia by Mia Nisbet – Textile UPCYCLING for Africa – Designer PROFILE

Mia by Mia Nisbet
Fusing recycled clothing with traditional Malawian textiles, MIA by Mia Nisbet is an ethical fashion brand like no other. There are funky upcycling brands and bold African collections but not many that bring the two together whereas MIA by Mia Nisbet does. After spending some time in Malawi Mia Nisbet was inspired by the mix of second-hand clothing and local textiles that Malawians wore. Intrigued by the mix of ‘Northern’ and ‘Southern’ cultures and the contrast between modern and traditional textiles, Mia created her collection upcycling second-hand imported clothing and offsetting this with a bold African print and has showcased at the first Africa Fashion Week London in 2011, as well as during London Fashion Week in Feb 2012 for her 2012 collection (image below), as well as being an Ethical Fashion Forum Innovation Award winner. More excitedly is that Mia by Mia Nisbet features in our book Fashion Africa by AFG Founder Jacqueline Shaw.

Mia by Mia Nisbet – 2012 collection

Nisbet’s signature ruffles and funky styling transform previously discarded pieces of clothing into fresh, playful ones. Men’s shirts, old T-shirts and sportswear are given a new lease of life with careful tailoring and a little African ‘Kitenge’. Featuring well known western logos such as Adidas and I ‘heart’ NY in many of her designs, Mia playfully emphasizes the upcycled nature of the designs and the contrast between the ideas of ‘African’ and ‘Western’ style.

Working with producers in Malawi, Mia designs and sells her collection to an International fashion market. A proportion of the profits from sales are reinvested in the producer’s local community through training, equipment and infrastructure needed to increase market access and help to develop sustainable livelihoods. Sustainability and style are the foundations of the design concept behind Fashion by MIA.
Malawi, along with many African countries has been flooded with second-hand clothing imports from the West, the majority of these finding their way into the market as unsaleable charitable donations. Although providing a cheap and affordable source of clothing for many people this influx of cheap clothing is also hugely damaging to the local textile industries. Mia uses these markets as a source of inspiration and the basis for her designs. By upcycling and adding her own creative flare she creates employment for local tailors, invigorating the local textile industry in a refreshingly different way.
Check out her collections at www.fashionbymia.com.
Main image is Mia Nisbet designs for Bmagazine – Model : Paula Okunzuwa, Photographer copyright: Dariusz Adamek
All other images are the copyright of Mia Nisbet and Mia by Mia Nisbet
Author: Imogen Butler







 
 

 
dcb1814d-3690-4732-8ced-8ee10991413c

IT IS BACK! Africa Fashion Day Berlin – Jan 2015

In January 2015, there will be the first time a fashion panel and a vernissage. Participating designers of Premium Exhibition (International Fashion Trade Show) are from Berlin/Mozambique, Burkina Faso, Ghana, South Africa. Afr...
by africafashionguide
0

 
 
Ghana Pop-Up shop. Artwork Maryjo Cartier.

Ethical Fashion Initiative Ghana Fashion Designers showcase at the Holiday Pop Up in Accra, 13th-15th December, 2014

The Ethical Fashion Initiative Ghana (EFIG) Holiday Pop Up is a display of fashion created by the newest generation of Ghanaian designers poised to generate exports as part of the growing African fashion industry.The EFIG aims ...
by Jacqueline
0

 
 
African Design Competition Artwork small

The Ethical Fashion Initiative Launches their Second African Fashion Talent Competition – APPLY by JAN 5th!

We love the work of the ITC through their Ethical Fashion Initiative and are extremely excited about their upcoming competition. Just launched, the competition fits into the Initiative’s African Fashion Design mentoring progr...
by africafashionguide
0

 




3 Comments


  1. I love that last one best. Really lovely


  2. Benedicta

    how do i contact mia?



Leave a Reply