MIA by Mia Nisbet is a company, a brand, a concept and a designer that we love here at Africa Fashion Guide. We simply adore her and for the simple reason she emphasizes the importance of bring the fun back to fashion in a way that is considered, innovative and supports what we love – development and trade in developing countries. It is an ethical fashion in Africa success story.
MIA by Mia Nisbet’s up-cycled collections are inspired by the way Malawian citizens mix imported clothes with their traditional dress and printed textiles. From this observation she develops stunning ranges based on an eye-catching fusion of tradition and modernity.
After graduating with Honours from Glasgow School of Art in 2003, designer Mia Nisbet developed her skills as in-house designer for Michiko Koshino. By 2005 she was designer in charge of the Soviet label at USC and launched her own ethical label MIA by Mia Nisbet in 2008. Almost immediately the label attracted major awards. In particular: winner of the prestigious Make Your Mark in Fashion Award 2008 for ethical fashion design during London Fashion Week and also winner of the Ethical Fashion Forum Innovation Award 2009. Recent developments range from a prominent feature in the ground-breaking book ‘Fashion Africa’ by Jacqueline Shaw to being used as an illustrative example in the House of Lords ethical fashion debate!
Mia, who also showed at AFWL last year said of the show:
“AFWL is a fantastic show. Now in it’s 2nd year it is developing well. The atmosphere is electric and the people involved are beautiful and friendly. At AFWL you become part of a family.”
MIA’s S/S 2013 collection moved away from her usual use of muted tones. The collection was fierce, bold and vibrant, with a fabulous range of tie-dyed fabrics mixed with her signature use of traditional african prints. Drawing inspiration from African Tribal adornment MIA created fabulous fringing effects on T-shirts and jackets using the off-cut fabrics that otherwise would have become waste.
Our favourite piece is the tie dye dress bordered in traditional fabrics (see image below) and that cropped military jacket with fringing along with the tie n dye skirt is one to own! An explosive fusing of traditional techniques and traditional prints methinks, that brings a newness to what is on the marketplace out there in regards to African fashion.
This idea is in keeping with MIA’s ongoing efforts to recycle and reduce textile waste destined for landfill.
Keep up the grand work Miss Nisbet!
If you love this collection as much as we do then you can find all of these MIA by Mia Nisbet items available to buy on-line at www.fashionbymia.com