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August 27 2014

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Muzungu Sisters Unveils Its Wares

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“It’s not about the It bag or It shoe anymore,” Tatiana Santo Domingo tells Style.com. “People are sick of having the same look.” So Santo Domingo, along with pal Dana Alikhani, is launching Muzungu Sisters, a new online shop that offers handcrafted, ethically sourced garb and accessories from around the globe. Not, in other words, what you’re likely to find on the shelf at the nearest department store.

“We wanted to create an interactive portal that would bring together fair trade suppliers from all over the world,” says Alikhani. The pair, who met in London in 2002, bonded over a mutual love for the nomadic lifestyle while jetting to far-flung locales like Rio de Janeiro and Tangier. (They dubbed their Web site Muzungu Sisters, Muzungu meaning “wanderer” in Swahili.) “We would stumble upon typical things that we loved,” recalls Santo Domingo, citing a pair of traditional leather and Kilim rug boots worn by trekkers in the Atlas Mountains. “You would never think to wear them in the city but pairing them with something modern looks amazing,” she says.

The site, which launches November 1, features an eclectic mix of Balinese sarongs, Peruvian bolero jackets, and Brazilian mochilas (backpacks), all of which the pair discovered from meeting with Fair Trade Cooperatives and specialized artisans in various international communities. Just don’t expect any big-name brands. “It’s not that we don’t wear designer clothes,” explains Alikhani. “But that whole head-to-toe look has never been our aesthetic.”

To celebrate the site’s debut, the pair will open a pop-up shop at London hot spot Momo through December, featuring their namesake collection and a curated assortment of housewares from local Moroccan designers. “These days the definition of luxury has changed,” says Santo Domingo. “Having something inaccessible and difficult to find, that is true luxury.”

MuzunguSisters.com and its pop-up shop at Momo, 25 Heddon Street, London, both launch November 1.

Photos: Courtesy of Muzungu Sisters

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Comments

  1. IceMaiden says:

    Dear Style.com,

    Please inform Ms santo Domingo that in Swahili, ‘Muzungu’ is a prejorative term given to white settlers in Kenya – it’s not cool, they’re making fun of her. It literally means ‘white person’.

    Best regards.

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