MUZUNGU SISTERS INTERVIEW
Muzungu Sisters ( Swahili for “wanderer” or “traveler”) is a brand of ethically sourced, handmade clothing and accessories created by globetrotters Dana Alikhani and Tatiana Santo Domingo, two friends who share a life-long passion for travel. The stylish nomads received so many requests from friends they realized they could share all their gypset finds with a larger audience. The products are sourced with extreme care, to ensure that no human footprint is left at their origin and to maintain the welfare, craft and industry of those producing it. The site, will go live tomorrow (just in time for the holidays) and will feature stand out pieces ( see caftans below) and other beautiful uncommon goods. If your in London definitely go check out their pop up shop at Mo Cafe in Momo's that will run through December.
What are the plans for Muzungu Sisters and how did the idea come about?
DANA: We both share a passion for traveling and discovering new cultures and so decided to start Muzungu Sisters in order to promote the crafts of local artisans including supporting artisans whose crafts may be dying out, and to make such timeless, season-less items available to the global market in a modern, accessible and unexpected way.
The idea came about in 2009 when we were both living in New York: I was finishing my Masters wanted to start an online portal that would promote fair labor practices through supporting artisans in various communities while Tatiana had wanted to travel and collect artisanal things from around the world and curate a website including these items, so we decided to merge the two ideas.
DANA: my parents, travel, observing people on the street, orientalism and the debates around it (Edward Said), third cultures and movements of people, global textiles
TATIANA: traveling, my family and friends, art, music
Most interesting travel destinations so far?
- DANA: Machu Picchu, Peru, northwestern Argentina (Salta and Jujuy province)
- TATIANA: Luang Prabang in Laos, India, Cambodia
Favorite websites, blogs, publications
- DANA: Prospect magazine, the Economist, New Yorker, Bidoun, Monocle, Assouline, Taschen, www.nymag.com, www.handeyemagazine.com, www.hrw.org, www.business-humanrights.org/
- TATIANA: Le Courier International, National Geographic, vanityfair.com, The Economist, www.purple-diary.com,www.thesartorialist.com,www.spoonfed.co.uk
Fashion icons in your opinion?
DANA: Talitha Getty, Millicent Rogers, early travelers Freya Stark, Isabella Bird and Isabelle Eberhardt, world leaders in national dress including Hamid Karzai and Evo Morales, Bakhtiari tribeswomen (my mother is Bakhtiari)
TATIANA: Talitha Getty, Marianne Faithfull, Marchesa Luisa Casati, Jimmy Hendrix