UnikBlends was born out of Crisis....
I was born in Nigeria, lived in South Africa for about 7 years as a young adult but Netherlands is now home with my husband and 2 amazing kids. I am a chemical engineer with a career in developing & directing projects.
In 2015, the amount of overwhelm and stress I felt with the pressures of my work and personal situation of having to run a home + family, led to a ruptured appendix and narrowly missed death. During my recovery, I was forced to slow down and in this period I discovered just how polluting the industry I worked in was and I wanted to do something to change that.
I started exploring my options and found that fashion, particularly FAST FASHION, was the second most polluting industry after oil & gas. Suddenly, how I dress matter and Slow Clothing became a necessity for Slow Clothing is a conscientious, holistic approach to clothing that considers Individuality, Authenticity and Creativity as well as the people, processes, resources applied. It is style that is timeless because it is more than convenience or cost and much more about collectively caring for our planet’s wellbeing.
I became convinced that sustainability and renewable energy must be the way forwards, together with innovative, collaborative approaches.
My African roots, my love for colours and nature combined with my desire to contribute meaningfully and engage effectively towards making sustainability a norm, led to the creation of ‘UnikBlends’; an online conscious space aimed at promoting sustainable style that is infused with sustainably-sourced African fabrics and radically shaped by women as all UnikBlends products are made by female artisans.
I also wish to address the limiting, default, one-sided story that is all too often associated with Africa, where she is considered as a charitable cause with images of malnourished kids living in abject poverty or violence. For I was born and raised in the magnificence and colourful warmth of Africa, a continent that is immersely blessed with youthful hope, diversity and natural beauty. Leaving her shores, I got to see and experience how the rest of the world considered Africa and I knew I had to share her real story.
UnikBlends thus aims to tell a powerful story of Africa as each of our products is infused with Africa’s rich textile heritage as well as the artisan’s unique art of repurposing to reinvent modern, multi-functional masterpieces.