GUAP Magazine is the worldâ€™s first video magazine dedicated to discovering and showcasing emerging talent. Published and distributed quarterly by GUAP International LTD. Founding Editors Ibrahim Kamara Jide Adetunji Online Editor Stephanie Ospina Music Editor Sade Akinfe Fashion Editor Regina Jaiy Arts & Culture Editor Bonita Darkoh Assistant Music Editor Benita Barden Photography Shenell Kennedy Terna Jogo Giorgia Gray Styling & Creative DIrection Seyon Amosu Felicia Brown Maureen Kargbo Words Aji Ayorinde Zweli Chibs
THE WORLDâ€™S FIRST VIDEO MAGAZINE: DEDICATED TO DISCOVERING AND SHOWCASING EMERGING TALENT
CONTENTS COVER FEATURES BBZ | Page 6 Brent Faiyaz | Page 12
Annie Beatson | Page 18 Novelist | Page 20 Saint Shugi | Page 26 Rachel Chinouriri | Page 28 Fizzel Castro | Page 30 Chante Ferraro | Page 34 Ghana in photos | Page 36 Jaffa Saba | Page 46 Temi Mwale | Page 50 British Mustard | Page 51 Rachel Chinouriri | Page 28 Deyah | Page 54 Milk & Honey | Page 56 Express yourself | Page 62 Brands on the block | Page 70 The future of fashion | Page 85 Poetry Freedom | Page 100 Styled by Me | Page 101
Meet BBZ - a club night & curatorial collective from South East London prioritising the experiences of Queer Womxn, trans & non-binary people of colour.
BRENT FAIYAZ PHOTO - NOAH CHUCK ART DIRECTION - HITEN ASHRA STYLIST - HITEN ASHRA STYLING ASSISTANT - JACK FERGUSON RAY
“I THINK THAT’S WHAT IT’S ALL ABOUT. BEING REAL
EVEN THOUGH YOU NKOW THAT SH*TCAN KILL YOU” 14
Founder of Luxemore, Annie Beatson successfully launched her business after being let go of at her 9-5 role. She took this opportunity to exercise freedom, by taking matters into her own hands; which led to her taking a new path. GUAP interviewed Annie on her transition from employee to entrepreneur. She shares the autonomy Luxemore has given her to educate others on the importance of chemical-free hair products. How would you describe the transition from Employee to Entrepreneur? “I was working for a tech start-up and had been there for 3 years working in various departments. In February 2018, I was informed the department I was heading up was shutting down and I was secretly ela ed! Having previously owned a business, I always had intentions of going back into entrepreneurship and this was the sign I needed. God has laid it on my heart to create an impactful brand, so it was a transition I was willing to make, albeit a decision not to be taken lightly.” This transition must have given you a sense of freedom, what advice would you give to others wanting to start their own ventures? “My honest advice is only start your own venture if you are extremely passionate about what you plan to do. Entrepreneurship is not easy, you will need a lot of resilience and drive to keep going. There are more lows than highs so please do not be misguided by the successes shown on social media. Leaving the rat race is very freeing, however the transition comes with new challenges that you need to be able to consistently overcome.”
We hear Luxemore is international, tell us more about your launch in Ghana? “It was symbolic launching in Ghana first as it is where my family is from and my long-term goal is to be able to assist in creating a better Africa. The launch in Ghana was something I was passionate about doing, and it was important to collaborate with other African entrepreneurs. I worked with a creative studio called Mhoseenu and used social media and word of mouth to promote; thankfully I had a good turnout. How would you describe Luxemore to someone that had never heard of the brand?
“Luxemore London is a premium, all-natural hair and skincare brand. Our products are 100% chemical-free and vegan. We provide shampoo and conditioners sets, hair and body bars and our organic oils can be used on hair, beard and skin.” What is the ethos of the brand?
“Our ethos is to always be ethical and responsible. We promise to keep the customer and the environment at the forefront of our mind when creating products and throughout all our decisions.” How do you look to transform the Natural-Hair care industry? “By creating safe products that work well and look great. I believe my customers deserve to feel a sense of pride and joy when they purchase my products. This is curated by the brand aesthetic and trust in knowing everything is free of anything harmful.”
主義 SAINT SHUGI
Saint Shugi is a platform founded by Luke Kayode Olutunmogun and Riarnna Edwards exploring creative expression through a variety of cocepts.
Saint Shugi was founded whilst they were both at university. It provides example of what unfi tered expression, without agoal post in mind, looks like.
Luke: “The idea started from wanting to have a space or platform just to write things down. When you’re creating context just for yourself it feels a bit egotistical, so I wanted to make something for a bigger picture. After I brought all my friends – and Riarna, my girlfriend in, and we went from there. The name means ism in Japanese, so initially every release is going to relate to an ‘ism’. So socialism was the first one, then Afro-futurism. We wantedeverything to have a bit more meaning. Now, anything we have in our mind we just want toput out there. The best thing about Shugi, is that everything we do at each point is where we wereat then. Like the socialist t-shirts, we would never do that again but I also don’t regret itbecause in 2017, 1 st year of uni, that’s where we were at.”
Riarna: “I feel like everything that we were doing was reflected around us also. Like everyone seemed to be on the Afro-futurism wave when we were on the concept, like Solange, IAMDDB for example.“ Luke: “We don’t really have specific aspirations. It’s just our personal expression, if people want to buy into it that’s great but it’s not our goal. It’s wherever it takes us really, and I think that’s the best way to be sometimes. Some creative industries are so focused on reaching a certain goal, or point in their career instead of the process.”
Riara: “Yeah, you can have confidence in what you’re doing but as long as you’re doing it because you genuinely want to. It’s also just fun, it feels good – we enjoy creating together.” Building up a platform from scratch isn’t easy, so Riarna: “I feel like everything that we were doing if anyone wants to collaborate/be was reflected around us also. Like everyone involved we’d love to hear from them. We’ve seemed to be on the Afro-futurism wave when also just released jumpers – which are available we were on the concept, like Solange, through our insta @saintshugi. 27 IAMDDB for example.“
RACHEL CHINOURIRI 28
Photographer and Videographer Fizzel Castro shares how he changed his destiny by picking up a camera. Changing the narrative has been a focal point for Fizzel, curating content has enabled him to have autonomy over his destiny. Despite encountering injustice within the system, he took matters into hands and found Freedom through being his own boss.
What does freedom mean to you? “Freedom is being able to think feel and do whatever you choose without fear or constraint, without having to feel bothered about anything. I’ve been fighting for freedom mostly my whole life, freedom from oppression by people with authority; freedom from jail cells, systematic racism in school, freedom from gang culture and social environment. For me freedom means the total opposite of slavery, captivity and limitation. On a daily I am always trying to break through the limitations that’s prevents me from pursuing my dreams.” When curating content, this must be liberating as the person behind the camera. How has being a creative helped you develop an individual? “Yes, very liberating. Media controls the masses, right? Well, if media controls the masses and I am a media outlet; I have the power to create a message that can potentially change the way the masses feel and think. If I curate positive imagery this cause others to do the same. For example, I chose to build my portfolio mostly with people I naturally felt were appealing to the camera regardless of ‘media/society’ standards, nothing against the models that were in agencies for being astoundingly perfect. However, I wanted to work with more everyday beautiful people to show people that they were special themselves and no different to people who they saw on billboards for Calvin Klein. It’s always a nice feeling to shoot someone and they say you made me look too good; and I’m like nah that’s all you, I literally took a picture of your image.”
How would you say freedom has played a significant part in your overcoming challenges in life? “Not to get into too much detail, I grew up in South London, Brixton. I was incarcerated at 15 for a crime I did not commit and spent 6 months in prison. Between the ages of 16 to 19 all my friends either died or went to jail pretty much. It was crazy there was no freedom back then. The only freedom I had was when I decided to pursue media. I went to college the furthest I could out the hood, and then the same with university I picked one on the coast and left Brixton. I needed freedom to live without all the negativity around me. Since leaving Brixton I have graduated from University and stayed on the Seaside, the sense of freedom out here was toogreat to give up. If I did not have the type of freedom I have now and still lived inBrixton, I would probably be dead or in jail. There would have been no way I would have picked up a camera.” Tell us about some exciting projects you have recently been involved in? “I work a lot with Yung Fume, thanks to my brother who I grew up with Fee Gonzales. I been working with him since 2017, since then we’ve gone to America places like Atlanta to meet and shoot with big producers; such as Zaytoven and artists like Lil Durk and Yung Nudy. I have recently been on tour with Nines, M Huncho and AJ Tracey. I am also currently creating content for an Artist from the UK who lives in Atlanta called Park Hill and Radio 1xtra DJ Kenny Allstar creating content for his social channels.” 31
What advice would you give to other creatives that unsure of where to start? “BMT, just start. I mean start by planning. Envision your goal first, then ignore all the Things telling you how not to do it. Only take in the ways on how to attain what you want, if it’s not selfish or inflicts harm on others then go for it! Follow through on your plan on how to get to where you want to be and do not stop. No matter what, no matter how slow it gets because nothing comes easy! Do not wait for anyone to give you a hand out. These days creatives are pretty much their own platform, we do not Need anyone’s else help but our own!” How would you say freedom can help others achieve goals their life goals? “ I do not think anyone can truly reach the goals set out for them in life if they do not allow themselves to be free. We need freedom to understand each other and more, so we need freedom to understand and truly love ourselves.”
Who are you and what do you do? Hi! My name is Chanté and I would describe myself as a Visual Artist. When did you begin pole dancing, and what inspired you? For many years I have had a healthy obsession with the strip club aesthetic (predominantly seen in American media). I love how extra the costumes are, the shoes, the nails, the makeup, the hair - Everything! I have always admired women that are fearless enough to show their bodies. It is often condemned or shamed but it takes a lot of courage. I never felt brave enough until I discovered pole dance. Funny story, but the reason I started pole dancing is because my mum ordered a pole for fitness. She never used it but then I started to casually use it. I suddenly realised it was everything I never knew I wanted and more! My pole journey begun and I signed up to a beginner’s course. How did you overcome fears and anxieties about producing pole dancing content and freely exploring your activity?
What would you say to young female creatives wanting to explore their femininity and creativity but may be shy or reserved? I know that it can be daunting at first because of this inbuilt fear we have of being judged. You just have to come to terms with the fact that no one is going to give you permission. The permission you are waiting for comes from yourself. You deserve to express yourself freely and pursue whatever makes you happy. Harness your talents and put yourself out there. Keep building up your self-confidence. You have to be your own greatest fan. Don’t focus on people that are doing bigger things but instead focus on people that are doing bigger things but instead focus on how you can be better than yesterday. No one can take away the blessings that are meant for you. There is more than enough room for all of us to be great! What do you think of artists like FKA Twigs and Solange using pole dance artistically?
I had only been learning to pole dance for a year when I decided to start creating videos. I know that there are always going to be more skilled pole dancers out there so I had to do something out of the box. I thought of ways to make my videos more visually appealing. I wanted to pole dance in places that were never seen before.
It is amazing! I love how women are taking something that has had a harmful, degrading stereotype and turning it into a beautiful expression of female empowerment. Women are taking back their power and realizing that we don’t have to conform to society’s labels. Your selfworth is defined by you, no one else can decide this for you. Set your intentions and go for it. Unfortunately it’s not possible to pack up my pole Women are strong, powerful and majestic. It is and set it up in the forest. So for my first video I time to reclaim used ‘Photo booth’ to change the background. our glory! The quality was terrible but it’s still one of my favourite videos because it’s so authentic. Learning and refining your craft is what creating is all about.
GHANA: IN PHOTOS PHOTO - TERNA JOGO
In April, GUAP flew to Ghana to document & connect with some of the capitals most influential creatives. In Partnership with Peoples Stories Project.
A F F A J ABA S EDY L KENN NROE L E N E MU - SH PHOTO ONIQUE MAY M ORDS
Hi Jaffa Saba! Please introduce yourself, ‘Jaffastudios*’ and some core values which make ‘Jaffa Studios*’ exactly what it is! I’m Jaffa Saba and I make sketches and ideas into real life products. I’m a London based Creative with a community driven brand called ‘Jaffastudios*’. ‘Jaffastudios*’ is a movement more than anything. Hosting workshops, pop ups, and soon to be hosting classes and events. I’m here to help people get accustomed to upcycling and repairing their clothing. So far We have hosted a sample sale & pop up shop with ‘EJDER OPEN STUDIOS’ and exhibited at London Fashion Week Men’s ‘LFWM SS20’. As a young designer and fashion consultant when and how did your journey begin? I always had an eye for design from a young age and always sketched as a kid but never really found out about fashion until I was in my teens. I couldn’t afford to buy anything designer I liked, so i just started hand sewing clothes together and would spend weeks on a jacket. The Nike ‘shoX’ mask was the first experimental piece I made during Christmas 2016. I made it in reference to a chinese designer who made sneakers into masks to combat smog in Mega Cities. I then bought a domestic sewing machine ( Heavy duty ‘brother’) and made garments on it until I could get an industrial which I can make pretty much anything with. I had some 1 on 1 mentoring from an Atelier at Savile Row shout out to Elton, for a couple months which helped me grasp more traditional methods of garment making. I used to carve knives, paint, do pyrography and modelling, so making fashion was not my first creative outlet. The main intention was always to create. I wouldn’t even consider myself a designer just yet. I’m still young and I’m still just doing this for fun. Also simply because I really enjoy it. On the other hand I started being a consultant due to at first being invited to do so by an agency. Then going on to do regular focus talks with international sportswear companies and Protein studios. I like focus groups because it’s always nice to get a fresh 48 perspective from peers, elders, youth or
even just strangers in general. The reconstruction of fashion and textiles within ‘Jaffa Studios*’ is phenomenal! It is evident that the core techniques you apply differentiate the brand from a quintessential method of manufacturing clothing. Can you talk us through what inspires you, and what made you want to begin to reconstruct garments and accessories and give them a new life? When it comes to creating pieces I don’t really plan when I make them. I do however try to sketch whenever I have an idea. Sometimes I don’t even plan, I just start cutting at clothing and collaging the pieces together. I Make some of my own textiles from scratch or hand embroider using a huge variety of print mediums and using both nontraditional and traditional methods. I never truly know what the outcome of most of my work is until it’s complete but I always have a vivid mental image before hand. The process is quite natural and much like a collage you perfect it in the moment. I’m always in the mindset of what something could be and the potential. I look at everything around me as a work in progress. The inspiration for my customs is everything and anything. But for my first collection its very much ‘nature’ and actually a specific region in the mediterranean. The uniqueness and raw execution of some of these pieces are incredibly intricate. What would you say is you’re creative process from vision to final product when constructing a piece? It could be 2am and I’ll be trying to get to sleep and I’ll think of something. There have been times where I have thought and executed pieces in one sitting because that’s simply how I create. I carry around a sketchbook with me so I always have something to make notes in but I mostly mentally plan out everything before I physically do it. Your pieces mostly encourage sustainability, what does sustainability mean to you and your brand? Furthermore, how does this recuperate within our current society and the market of fast fashion?
If we had a time machine and we flashed forward to the future - where would you hope to see ‘Jaffa Studios*’? ‘Jaffa Studios*’ will be a staple, alongside having one of the strongest communities within the fashion industry and bring sustainable textiles and innovative design into one. I look to work with ‘Donda’ and birth a new curriculum for creative career paths for all boards of education. I also hope to grow and learn on the way. Although I have events and certain things lined up in the coming months and even years, I can’t tell you everything about the future as even I don’t know everything I’m going to choose to pursue. What I can tell you is I hope to explore as many mediums of design as possible and I believe there is an untapped level of luxury yet to be explored.
Sustainability to me is quite important in a day and age like this. We only have a couple years left before the damage we have caused to the earth becomes irreversible, so we all have to do our part. Unfortunately, I do not believe any real call to action has been made yet within the fashion community and I want to bring more awareness to this subject. One of my aims is to actually contribute to eliminating fast fashion through a political approach. You exhibited a workshop and exhibition at London Fashion Week’s Men this June! What was this like and did this build new bridges for the brand? It was lit! Definitely something I originally thought was going to take a lot longer to manifest than it did. Shout out to Ejder. I used the opportunity to spotlight my process and engage with the public through the rubber dipping workshop and the interactive footwear exhibition. I unfortunately cannot reveal what projects are lined up for the future but they are definitely something to get behind. 49
PHOTO - IBRAHIM KAMARA WORDS - AJI AYORINDE VIDEO - IBRAHIM KAMARA
TEMI MWALE Temi Mwale is a multi-award-winning social entrepreneur, educator and activist. She has been actively seeking solutions to some of the worldâ€™s most pressing issues since the age of 16. She is committed to global peace-building and empowering a generation to challenge and disrupt the systems that generate violence internationally. Temi is the Founding Director of The 4Front Project, a youth-led social enterprise on a mission to empower young people and communities to 50 live free from violence. By the age of 21, Temi
was one of the youngest change makers to be recognised by Forbes Magazine and featured in their annual list, as one of the Top 30 Under 30 Social Entrepreneurs in Europe. Guap creative Aji Ayorinde took a trip to meet Temi in Grahame Park Estate - where she grew up and where The 4Front Project was birthed from the tragedy of the death of her friend Marvin Henry, who was fatally shot dead in 2010. They spoke about her plans and what she has been working on, all things activism, and what freedom means to her. Check out what she had to say.
South-East London musician, stylist and designer, British Mustard, also know as ‘kaigotlost’, may come across as something of an enigma if you didn’t do your research. With an image and sound that is truly unique in the UK scene, you’d be hard placed to fit him into any particular box or genre. With a talent that transcends such genres, blending gritty modern matter-of-fact raps with classic punk beats and influences, British Mustard is carving out his own lane in an already packed industry. For the latest Guap issue, we caught up with him, speaking all things ‘Freedom of Expression’, finding out more about his time in ‘boys band’ (his words) ‘Leng Team’, his own personal evolution, and about how his plans to bring back the old school punk scene through music and style. Certainly one to watch.
PHOTO - IBRAHIM KAMARA WORDS - AJI AYORINDE VIDEO - IBRAHIM KAMARA
Music is powerful. Regardless of race, gender, social status, or any other factors music is one thing that truly unites. Whether it is a feel-good anthem that people can’t help to move to or a deep and thought-provoking effort, music is emotive for everyone. The reason we can connect to the music varies from track to track. For example, we connect to Dave and Aj Tracey ‘Thiago Silva’ a lot differently to the way we connect to Dave ‘Black’. But what’s incredible about music is that both have the ability to connect with an audience, even if the audience is not the same every time. One of the most fascinating aspects of this is in its relation to artists popularity. A lot of the time what makes us like artists is knowing about them beyond the music. Stormzy is a great example of this, he allows the public a certain level of insight into his life and personality and that has made him relatable and someone we are happy and eager to support. He’s done this primarily through social media but his social outreach work (scholarships, Merky Books) and media appearances have also played a role. In his music, whilst introspective Stormzy tends to have a lot more to say about current affairs, or even just makes more feel-good music. Whilst this has worked extremely well for Stormzy, a lot of artists are more reserved in their publicfacing appearance. So it is through their music they allow us a space to get to know them better. Some go deeply personal - names like Avelino, Wretch 32 and Dave spring to mind. When it comes to artists like these they get deep, really deep. From domestic abuse, family situations, relationships, mental health, loss, and more they will cover it all. It is interesting from a fan perspective as we get to see that the artists we love and hold on such a pedal stool, as vulnerable and that in a way makes them appear more familiar to us. It’s also great to see that the scene has progressed to this point. For a long time, it seemed like the scene was set in its ways. It seemed like everything happened one genre at a time, with every artistseemingly having a go on each genre. Now we have several successful genres running concurrently: grime, UK rap, drill, and afroswing (plus whatever category D-Block Europe fall into). With this, we’re seeing more artists reach the 52
Perspective: Things We Should Be Thankful Of The Current Music Climate For success that previously seemed unattainable. What it also is allowing is for diversity in content. Gone are the days of one-dimensional rap about the streets, now open conversations are had about sexual escapades, making investments, faith, and even life as a landlord (listen to KwayOrClinch – ‘Renting’). It has also been beneficial as sticking to sounds they are comfortable with has allowed artists like A2, Lancey Foux, Etta Bond, and more to develop cult- like followings that have grown as the artists have. What this has allowed for is for musicians to no longer feel under pressure to go down the route of signing to a label. For too long it seemed like signing to a major was the thing that would help artists truly make it. Yet today we see a plethora of both newer and more established artists taking the more independent route. That’s not a knock to labels either. Over time artists have developed a level of business savvy that was previously lacked. Now, instead of signing deals for certain amounts of projects or years, artists are signing contracts solely
ists do is self-funded. Video-shoots, shows, merchandise – they not only have to come up with the strategy and products for all of this but they have to pay for it all out of their own pocket for it to go ahead. Luckily for them, they usually do this in knowing that they will make back whatever they spent and more. It is this current climate that helps that. (big narstie show/ big narstie show twitter) Streaming is especially important. No longer are radio and television plays the most important thing. In fact, physical sales aren’t even as important anymore. All because of how big streaming has got.Now sometimes what makes or breaks artists is getting on to the right playlists. Certain artists racking up hundreds of thousands or even millions of listens from being put in the right places. Add in the fact that because of how big streaming is, it is included in figures for traditional accolades like awards and chart position, it’s no surprise to see why streaming is eclipsing other forms of music consumption.
for publishing, or distribution, or for some their own label imprints. This improved negotiating leads on to another success we should be screaming about even more. Money! For a long time, it seemed like there wasn’t good money in the music game. It very much felt like unless you were one of the select few top tier artists you would always need something else to support you. Streaming, social media, and just generally the internet has completely changed that. Now artists can directly interact with their fans, get their music out to them and even take a large percentage of revenue from their songs on their own without even having to organise a deal. AJ Tracey has recently spoken about how for him being independent is beneficial but not without its risks. Being indie is, of course, great, it allows artists to be able to sustain themselves and create for their own fanbases without compromising. What people must also not forget is that what this also means is everything that these art-
Lastly, and arguably what is the most positive change is that now music can be used as a stepping stone on to other things. There are so many examples of this: G Frsh going from an artist to a manager, Stormzy starting a Cambridge University scholarship programme as well as his own book publishing imprint, J2K starting Crep Protect and being one of the men behind Crepes & Cones, Krept & Konan with the aforementioned Crepes & Cones. Two final examples that deserve special mentions are Big Narstie and Michael Dapaah. Big Narstie went from Brixton grime artist to having his own show on mainstream national tv and it all happened via the internet and creating a name first through music. Michael Dapaah is interesting in this aspect as he started away from music, honing his craft in sketches and comedy, yet one sketch of him as a rapper rocketed him into the limelight with the now infamous Big Shaq – ‘Man’s Not Hot’ track. Music is no longer seen as the end goal, the be all and end all so to speak, it is great to see amongst both younger and older people that they are seeing it is an opportunity. An opportunity to propel the culture forward through getting into different avenues, and in doing so inspiring future generations to not sell themselves short. 53
Introudicng Deyah formerly known NonameDisciple a rising welsh rapper who’s music has transcend the UK scene with the likes of herb rand new album ‘Lover/Loner’, she has also received recognition from the likes of Red bull to Lilly Allen who states she will be the next big artist in 2019.
How would you describe your music? I only rap about what I’ve experienced or learnt, which has essentially resulted in the person I am today and my identiA fusion between old school lyricism ty, so my music expresses exactly that. and new school musicality. There’s bits ofgrime, neo-soul, jazz, hip-hop, What is to come for 2020? afrobeat etc.. It’s actually mad hard to describe. I aim to make history in some form or another and work to the next level. I What is freedom to you? have a very good feeling for 2020. I’m a person of faith and my faith is Advice for new artists? freedom. Freedom to me is to be rid of fearand to be free mentally, to think Hmm, as cliche as it sounds, I’d say for yourself regardless of the social you’ve got to believe in your craft reconstructs of society. Not allowing the gardless of whether 1 person listens to pressures of the expectations of others to have an impact on your decision it or 1000. Once you believe in it and making or how you feel about yourself. stand firm in knowing that you’re delivering the best work you can, then the opinions of others don’t have an impact Who inspires you? or alter the way in which you create your art. Musically, I’m inspired by the likes of Michael Jackson, Fela Kuti, Lauryn Hill, Queen Latifah, J Cole, Burna Boy, Com- Anyone you would like to work with? mon, Erykah Badu, Black Eyed Peas, Mary J Blige, Little Simz. On a personal Saba, J Cole, Burna Boy, Dave,Stormzy, Chance the rapper, Little Simz, Pink, level, I’m inspired by Jesus for who He Ghetts, Wiley, Mahalia. was, what He did and His teachings. How does your music express your identity?
PHOTO - IBRAHIM KAMARA WORDS - SADE AKINFE
MILK & HONEY Ebinehita Iyere, Lead Project Co-ordinator at Juvenis spends her time creating space for the Youth of London. Initially she started her career working with young males in the justice system, where she identified a gap. Ebin identified there was a lack of support for young females affected by traumatic events which involved these young males, this led to her curating a platform named Milk & Honey to provide this support.
What motivated you to curate Milk & Honey? “I started my career working with predominantly with young males in the Youth Justice System and Community and every time an incident occurred such as an arrest, fight and or stabbing it would be a young female that would call me to explain who they were and also what had happened, this repeated itself for many incidents. When I first started working with young women I never had a name for what I was doing I just did it until I read a poetry book called Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur. I remember giving one of them the poetry book and after reading (as well as posting the quotes on snapchat) she told me that all girls needed a space to read it and do what we did together so she named the project Milk and Honey, which offers young women a creative and expressive safe space that aims to allows them flourish and take ownership of H.E.R (Healing, Empowerment and Resilience) through 1:1 sessions and group projects.” Knife crime in the UK has become a hot topic, however as mentioned the young girls affected are rarely discussed. How did you discover that this was an issue that needed to be tackled? “During Summer 2016, a lot happened in London but this year changed my life and created my balance of working with both males and females, I had just graduated with a 2:1 in
Criminology and Youth Studies, working fulltime and started an Organisational Psychotherapy: Introduction to Violence and Trauma course. Sadly, during summer, a special young man passed away and typically everyone was so worried about the incident rather than also thinking about the after math. His death touched me professionally and personally as I saw was my adolescence flash before my eyes. Whilst having my support system, I supported the young women 1:1 and in groups containing their expression, taking them out to eat and play (as play has no age limit). The young women I was supporting also helped me to engage more girls and even some of the young males around them that where traumatised but refused to engage with services.” How has creating this platform exposed you to challenges not addressed by the community? “Milk and Honey has enabled me to understand that a lot of people do not really understand women and young women’s involvement in the communities they grow in unless it is from a victim stance. Milk and Honey is for young women who have experienced something traumatic this is because I never want young women to feel that they must label their experiences. Standing by this has helped me understand there a huge lack of understanding of trauma surrounding and impacting young people. I learn 57 every day from these girls they have taught
I learn every day from these girls they have taughtme allot about the pressure they face due to mental health, education, social media and roles they play within society that we fail to look at unless she is a victim of something but then we blame women when they experience something as a victim but then also have the same energy when a woman does something that is not ‘woman like’.” How do you think Milk and Honey has had an impact on the young women you have worked with?
expression.” – Baby J. “It has been a way of letting out my emotions in a way that comes easy to you while doing something that you enjoy. It has helped me grow as a person and find out more about myself. Milk and honey has given me lots of opportunities to be have fun and help my confidence has grown which very uplifting!” - D What has been the best part about Milk and Honey so far?
“I get asked this a lot and I always say the same “Everything, every day is a different day on things, Milk and Honey is for them and designed the projects but the trips and events we by them every aspect of the project has input go toh ave opened a whole new world for from young women past, present and future me as we have gone to educational and so let me hand it over to them so they can tell fun places and the best part is I got to do it you…” with other girls” How would you say the safe space has helped you put H.E.R first?
“I didn’t even realise it was a form of therapy but it’s really helped me grow, I started seeing myself and life differently and felt “Milk and honey helped me feel more comforta- way more confident in my abilities and ble within myself and grow as a person. They career goals. I now work with them and to showed me a different side of life and ability to heal, empower and build resilience in other put myself first. Being in a safe space with other young women. it has helped me make a females where we could talk about topics like difference in people’s lives who come from mental health, growth and created together this where I grew up, I have a love hate relationhelped me come out of my shell more”- O ship with my past there’s a lot of things I wish I could’ve changed so Milk and Honey “Milk and honey opened the door for me to helps me make that difference” - O. speak out about mental health issues. I was so used to being aware of mental health issues but never having the space to talk about it. Milk and Honey created a safe space for not only myself, but the other girls in the group to be comfortable enough to talk about mental health” – Big J How does the creative expression help with the healing process? “I remember when we wrote our poems and recorded it in the studio, everybody listened to it, and their reaction made me feel like my words were so powerful and had an effect on everybody and myself. I never thought I would do something like that or reconnect with my love for books but it has helped. We are now doing a photography project and I love it because I am able to mix my passion with an expression.” – Baby J. 60
WORDS - BONITA DARKOH PHOTO - IBRAHIM KAMARA
E EX XP PR RE ES SS S Y YO OU UR RS SE EL LF F
STYLIST: FELICIA BROWN MUA: KARINA HIDALGO MODEL: YASMIN IDRIS PHOTOGRAPHY: TERNA JOGO
BRANDS ON THE BLOCK: GRINDSHINE PHOTO - WILFRED CISSE CREATIVE DIRECTION - YEMI ALADE & FRANCIS IBIWARI JACK SET DESIGN - AYUMI KAJIWARA MAKEUP - CHENAY JOHNSON MODELLING - DEV CLARKE & FRANCIS IBIWARI JACK WORDS - ABIOLA KAREEM INTERVIEW - ABIOLA KAREEM
A brand that personifies determination hard work and success, simplified to two words GRINDSHINE. GrindShine a futuristic, aesthetically pleasing clothing brand which is cooperates the notion of simplicity throughout its designs and campaigns. Every customer is a representative of the brand as the brand owner believes anyone who wears GrindShine are reinforcing the message that they will go any lengths to achieve their goals. Exactly what GrindShine stands for! The products are comfortable and designed in a unique way making the customer feel like a new and improved person.
Photography by: MARIANA PERES
Francis Jack a London born and raised Nigerian, has always wanted his own brand and attempted to established one in 1st year of college. Failing his 1 st attempt he decided to rebrand and establish GrindShine in January 2017. There has been many ups and downs, but with determination and passion Francis has been able to take his brand from strength to strength.
BRANDS ON THE BLOCK: MISEMI CREATIVE DIRECTION - ABIOLA KAREEM PHOTO - SHENELL KENNEDY INTERVIEW - ABIOLA KAREEM WORDS - ABIOLA KAREEM
Misemi, a clothing line created in 2014; that celebrates culture, diversity, selfcare, and being unapologetically yourself. Predominately womenswear but venturing intounisex clothing. ‘’I started Misemi whilst in uni studying an architecture degree. Misemi has allowed me to express my voice through fashion and start conversations and grow personally.’’
As of the start of June 2019 they have been able to open a brand-new concession in Atika, Brick Lane. With clothing items being fe tured on the likes of Mr Eazi, Raye, Lethal Bizzle, Beats 1 Radio presenter - Julie Adenuga, Alicai Harley and in numerous music videos such as Da Beatfreakz, SVGA, and Destinee Anthony; Misemi is just getting started!
MARIAM ADUKE Introduce yourself and what you do?
CREATIVE DIRECTION - ABIOLA KAREEM STYLING - MARIAM ADUKE PHOTO - SHENELL KENNEDY INTERVIEW - ABIOLA KAREEM WORDS - ABIOLA KAREEM
I am Mariam Aduke, A Pipeline Engineer, fashion entrepreneur And a sustainable fashion enthusiast. What does style mean to you? Style is a form of self-expression. I believe everyone has their innate style and this something that should be encouraged. A combination of personal preferences makes up a person’ style. Being a Muslim woman, I consider modesty when selecting my garments, but I also include items that portray my personal quirks. As a Stylist my job is to enhance personal style and come up with creative concepts and leave room for other flexibilities.
tographed. It was a leap of faith. My transition wasn’t smooth but looking back now, everything rolled out exactly as it was supposed to. Where do you get your inspiration from? I get my creative inspiration from anything and everything, it could be from science, or even people’ stories. Personally, I’m inspired by sustainability, inclusivity and spontaneity.
How did your career start?
Where do you see yourself in the next 2 years?
I started off as an Oil and Gas Pipeline engineer. You will be surprised how much transferable skills there are between traditional engineering and Fashion. A few years ago, the Oil industry went through a decline, and I decided to start my journey as a fashion stylist,as I have always been interested in styling and even worked on a couple of projects including a Vogue magazine feature of Mr Eazi, which I styled and pho-
I try not to think about these things I don’t want hypertension. Of course, I have an idea of where I want to be, but time stamps are limiting. However, giving the projects I am working on right now, I see myself growing and scaling up my businesses; Raw Edge Label, a sunglasses brand and Luxe Reloaded, a sustainable luxury brand where you can buy and sell pre-owned luxury goods. Best advice for anyone who wants to get into the industry Be ready to do the work. Intern with someone who’s Journey is in line with yours. Don’t sell yourself short and thread carefully when comparing yourself to others. It can eat you up!
THE WIND COLLECTIVE WORDS - AJI BOLAJOSIAH PHOTO - ANGIE STYLING - FELICIA BROWN
Creative Community Travel Company Wind Collective have had a year to remember, hosting 15 trips on five different continents and with plans to host 36 trips next year. Their four- person strong management team (Doyin, brother sister duo Clé and Camille Hunnigan, and Barni) has spent more time abroad than they have in the UK and have negotiated partnerships and deals with the likes of the Shangri-La Hotel and the Moroccan Tourism Board. This phenomenal growth is simply expected to continue as they further refine their offering, which currently provides a unique blend between hosting everyday travellers and creating content whilst abroad for brands - often with crossover. GUAP sat down with the four of them for our latest issue, to find out more about how they are finding things and wherethey plan to take it all. The four of them are in high spirits as they enter our office and we discuss the concept for the photoshoot that will follow the interview. Jovial introductions are made to the wider team as Doyin speaks about taking her recent project management exams. “The Wind Collective is a project itself and my most important one” she explains. “I would definitely say that I’m learning things from my exams that I can apply directly to the Wind Collective - implementing efficiency is one such thing.” Doyin and Cle briefly touch upon how each of the management team was doing separate things before they collectively decided to sit down in Shoreditch one day and strategise about how they would work together and create the Wind Collective, and that they have each had to adapt a number of times since then as the company has continued to grow. Seeming like the perfect moment for us to sit down and kick things off, we 80 segue into the interview itself.
Tell us more about the Wind Collective. Cle: What makes WC really special as a collective and community is that everyone plays different parts. We use the analogy of a body; this is reflected in the way our trips and the management team itself are structured. For example, Doyin, who had the persona of a corporate person who likes to travel has been able to bring those elements to the Wind Collective and attracted an audience from that corporate world too. The great thing is that it has caused us all to adapt. Even the way we first started designing trips was by starting a trip on Wednesday and finishing Sunday to allow people in that world to work around their work schedules. Aside from that and continuing the metaphor further, when we first started Camille was volunteering in India, so since then every trip has incorporated a ‘give back’ element. At the time I was writing and interning in journalism and personally wanted to start creating film, so decided that I’d like a community of creatives around me. This also helped with the loneliness of travelling solo, which is a real thing. This led to Barni joining, and introducing that element. Now our trips reflect our entire team and whole community. Doyin: I agree.
Cle: Now you have people specifically coming to shoot with Barni, others coming because they resonate with Doyin, and others even coming specifically for the ‘give back element’. What sold the Wind Collective to you Barni? Barni: At the time, I was doing a huge project which left me locked in a room for like six months. When I joined the Wind Collective, it was my first experience of true freedom. I really enjoyed that the planning was taken care of, which is important as a creative. Doyin: This is so so important for us and it’s really great that our Head of Creative Content said this. People can just jump on our trips and be free. Cle: We design these trips to feel like solo travellers travelling in community. We want people to use their phones less, plan less, and just create and be free. We give them things they can do, places to go, but also allow them to create content - this is important as we live in an Instagrammable generation. Barni: For me more than anything, what sold the Wind Collective to me is the experience of ‘freedom’ in every sense. Camille, you’ve been there from the start, what’s it like seeing everything come to life? From the outside, at least to someone like me, it seems that you guys are starting to see the fruits of your labour? Camille: When I first joined and was interning in India, I told Cle that I really wanted us to have an orphanage in the future. I think it’s amazing that now we get to see children smiling all the time. I recently did a ‘give back’ session in Morocco. It was amazing to have all the travellers come up to me and say it was the most important part of their trip was really heartwarming. Not everyone has that passion for it. It’s growing me as a person and is a route that I’m really enjoying.
Cle: It just reminds us that everyone is growing in their own thing and we have the resources to support all of that. We can support Camille with doing more on-screen work and modelling in the same way that we can support Barni as a
as a filmmaker and director with doing more of that. I feel the Collective is also creating opportunities for those within the collective. Doyin: Yeah I agree, we even have certain influencers within our community that we can support. How does that work? Cle: So we do run trips, but we are a ‘visual-first’ creative agency. Our main focus is that we run trips centered around ‘diversity’. Morocco, for example, featured 40 incredibly diverse individuals - plus-sized models, those active in the LGBTQ+ Community, white people, Black people etc. We package all of this together and present and pitch the trips and content that we can produce to brands as potential campaigns. With influencers - who we call ‘creative explorers’ - we include these as part of the package that we present to brands. With your Miami trip, for example, which a number of my friends were on, you looked like you had quite a good blend of people. How do you manage and marry the two sides of things? Managing the creative explorers (and and then the trip host will look after the travelyour interactions with them) with the people lers. That book to come on the trips themselves?
Doyin: For influencers, they’ll either come on the trip or will host a trip. So with Dubai, Phil Waukee did an Instagram takeover, but it wasn’t necessarily a case of treating him better or anything, it was a case of him genuinely enjoyDoyin: It is a part of the experience. People genu- ing the experience and sharing with his tribe. inely do sign up to the trip as they see the creative content. You don’t generally always get to do that So what have been your biggest partnerwhen you travel with your mates or by yourself. ships so far? Obviously you had the Pangea People want to be a part of that. partnership - what else has happened? Cle: On our trips, we have both a trip host and a creative lead. We try and tie our creative things with our traveller events so that we don’t isolate our travellers.
Cle: So in a scenario like that Barni will know ahead of time and go: “Ok, we’re going to Miami, the theme will be Miami Vice”.
Cle: We’ve done quite a few things with luxury hotels, like the Shangri-La, and we’ve done work with the Kempinski, and others.
Then we’ll send a moodboard to all the travellers And do they reach out to you or vice versa and say “this is what you need to pack, this how does it work? is what you need to look like” and then we’ll shoot that. So we pitch to brands, often on a diversity-first basis. We’ll state that Black travellers Barni and his creative team will then go away and spend X amount of money each year and will produce all the content for that scene and only spend it where they’re represented. We’ll what it will look and then the trip host will look then explain that to tourism boards and hotels 83
hotels who will invite us to stay with them by just sponsoring our trip and other times doing paid campaign work. For example, we pitched to the Moroccan Tourism Board ahead of our recent trip.
pleases’. I believe that the person who lives like the wind is a person who has come alive and is trulyfree, has no boundaries and is super perseverant. They go the extra mile to achieve what they need or want to achieve.
Doyin: That’s right. With some brands, we even work with them on a retainer basis.
Freedom to move is a big thing for us, as is freedom to do what I want with my time and being free and able to give back. The wind forces you Essentially, they get first ‘dibs’ on content creation to move even when you don’t want to. I feel and production. like we’re this force causing things to move and causing things to change. Cle: Exactly. So one example is Vitae London, who we shoot for monthly. Camille: For me, when I close my eyes, you can just be yourself and be in the moment. There Doyin: We’re then able to use people on our trips is this tattoo that Cle has - it’s called Qarah (with consent) for shoots as well and which means to be in the right place at the right benefit from a locational advantage. time. That’s a beautiful message. It means to just let yourself be. Rounding off - where do you see the Wind Collective in five years’ time? Amen. Doyin: Honestly, we plan to be the leading creative travel company in the world. It sounds crazy, but I feel that we’re on the way to doing that - no one does what we do how we do it and with the people that we do it with. Cle: I feel that as a creative travel company, we’re always going to honour those tenets of creativity and community. So we talk about how we can empower creatives through helping them to open businesses, the plan later down the line is to own Wind Collective houses abroad which we can invite people to. Doyin: The WeWork of Travel™! Cle: Haha, it’s crazy because the way it started we just sat down with no expectations or limits. We just thought ‘should we plan a trip?’ and put something up on Facebook with our account details. Not long after, 25 people sent us money. It was crazy - things have just blown up from there. Final question - what does ‘Freedom’ mean to each of you? Cle: It is definitely in line with our theme or slogan ‘Live Like the Wind’. For a spiritual person like myself who considers himself a Christian, when we came up with that theme, it was based on the scripture which says ‘the wind blows wherever 84
Barni: I think freedom means that I am free to experience; free to make my dreams a reality. It is experience. It is expression. It is creation. Doyin - how about you? What does freedom mean to you? Doyin: (*laughs*) sleeping and still making money. Nah, I’m playing. At this point, Felicia Brown, celebrity stylist, GUAP Gang and stylist for this editorial, walks in and everyone is temporarily distracted. Doyin: Picking up where we left off, freedom to me means living in purposeful greatness. When you feel like you’re in your optimal space and are just doing what God has planned and has created for you. Once again - purposeful greatness.
There’s been many unearthly, problematic moments within the fashion industry. From Burberry burning their unsold garments for simply being ‘unsold’ to fast fashion brands which promote ‘sweatshop’ manufacturing and culture. We as consumers of the cloth world are now beginning to understand the dire urgency and responsibility we all have when it comes to the planet and furthermore the fashion industry. As the people who fund the industry, it is up to us to ensure the fashion industry begins to evolve from something which constructs our world rather than deconstructs. These highlighted upcoming designers and creatives, are enforcing sustainable practises in which the fashion industry can evolve into something effective rather than damaging upon our planet.
As a fashion creative who is LGBT+, how does this shape your fashion identity? Furthermore is there any obstacles which you feel you have to endure when exposing your authentic self? I like to wear a lot of bright colours. You can probably see me in like yellow or pink. Shorts. I really like short shorts! I go for bold colours because I like to stand out. I’ve got such a bright personality, that’s where my bright colours come from. I do think times are changing. Back in the day everyone [LGBT+] was afraid to stand out and now we’re getting more.
Especially young people coming out. I came out in 2017. It took me a while to come out just because of ‘society’. I was afraid. But as soon as I did I realised there’s nothing to be afraid of. The sooner you come out the better you will feel for it and that there are people around you that will support you. Times are definitely changing and we are moving forward.
Do you think there’s any issues that arise being a person of colour and LGBT within the creative field? I think being a person of colour is hard enough. It has gotten better but it is still hard being a person of colour and also a part of the LGBT community. Having one is hard enough having both together, you feel like more of a target. What is your narrative as a British person of colour who is LGBT+ identifying? It is a juxtaposed position as you are British but your heritage isn’t entirely. Do you feel this has presented any privileges? When I hear stories about back home, it’s hard as I haven’t personally been through it or experienced homophobia compared to countries like Jamaica. So hearing about it - I wouldn’t know how to go through it. Nobody wants to go through that. If I could feel the pain, go there and bring them all back i would. Being LGBT+ is more acceptable over here. I’ve had it easier coming out. My family accepted me. My friends accepted me. I did have the fear as some of my family is from jamaica and I was unsure if they would accept me. I’m glad they didn’t. Where and how would you like to see the
What obstacles have you had to overcome being an openly queer creative? Especially as you work within the music scene - an often male dominated creative space?
First identifying myself as being black and a person of colour. Than identifying as a lesbian. But also a woman also. There are three angles i’m fighting. Initially I had to hide who I was. It was almost like I was living two different lives but i was just like take me as I am. How can we all improve so the creative community and society as a whole is more inclusive of minority groups such as the LGBT+ community? The main thing would be open communication. Communicating everyone’s perspective. It would just make certain topics easier to tackle which people don’t want to approach. It would bring more things out and in the open.
In a few words describe what itâ€™s like to be a LGBT+ person of colour creative?
Being black and gay is two strikes against you. Where and how would you like to see the LGBT+ community develop? What changes do you feel need to be made? Iâ€™d like the LGBT community to be accepted into society without having to fight so much for the right.
Does being LGBT+ identifying, transcend any disadvantages when working within your industry? It’s a hard situation, but as my nan says ‘God strangles but does not choke’. So you would not receive anything you can’t deal with. I’m a person of colour yeah. I’m a LGBT person too. But it’s all just labels i embrace proudly because you will be greater if you overcome all the things people can’t even imagine or relate to. You were actually born in Dominica, Rachel! Having only started to work within the UK the past few years. What are your thoughts regarding working and living within the UK creative field? Something I do like about Britain is that it preserves its history and it remembers its past, for history to not repeat itself in a bad way. Having worked within numerous industries in the UK for the past few years, do you feel times have changed? Are they continuously changing? Yes they are. Time is a never ending arrow just going forward. Maybe we say for the better not the worse. We’ll see in a few years time. Time is always changing and in a few years we’ll realise it was for the better. What advice would you give to people in society who may struggle to understand the needs of the LGBT+ community? Our family and community need to just keep listening to each other. We might not have the same idea but we fight for the same causes. It would be very sad that a movement that joins people would separate people because of a couple of differences. I don’t care if your atheist or left or right. As long as we can live in peace and harmony nothing else matters. That’s the 92 main point of being human.
“It’s a hard situation, but as my nan says ‘God strangles but does not choke’.”
‘808 LONDON’ is a brand disrupting the fashion ecosystem. Encompassed of politcal honesty, multi-purpose streetwear and founded by a non-conforming, inspirational founder, heights cannot be predicted for this brand and everything they will enbark on within the future. We delved deep with the founder of ‘808 LONDON’ to explore how this dynamic label, is setting the tone for the rest of the industry, and why the rest of the industry needs a taste of it.
CREATIVE DIRECTION - ABIOLA KAREEM PHOTO - CALEB DE SOUZA INTERVIEW - MONIQUE MAY MUNROE WORDS - MONIQUE MAY MUNROE
Hi ‘808 LONDON’! Congratulations on your newest collection and the success the brand has achieved since it’s youthful launch. ‘808 LONDON’ truly is a unique, ethical and multi-dimensional brand, with a USP for style and individuality. What would you say is the creative process and objective, while creating the newest collection? The creative process in designing clothing for ‘808 LONDON’ all comes from a very authentic place. I like to either tell a story or give a message through the clothing. There are 8 billion people on this earth all needing clothing and if a message or a story can be shared, educated and gained through clothing then that is a very powerful thing to be able to access and utilise. In terms of the messages I promote through ‘808 LONDON’ they are all very different. For our most recent drop ‘Legacy Eight’ this drop is based upon humanity. The pieces have a message of living a different life to the average 9-5 and finding a way to create your own reality. I know there is more to life than what we are all brainwashed to believe and I want to help get that message out there, When creating the pieces for ‘808 LONDON’, it is also very important to me that the actual items of clothing are shot in a creative way and including all race, gender and sexuality. I like to work with real models, not agency models, realistic beautiful people. I have models/friends who have shot with me since day one of creating ‘808 LONDON’ and seeing them still shoot with me now and who they have grown to be is something very beautiful. Remarkable. I was also incredibly touched to discover that with this new collection you have created an initiative in which every sale made of the newest collection, a tree is
planted in support of a non-profit environmental charity? Yes, ‘One Tree Planted’ is a non-profit organization and environmental charity, who are on a mission to make it simple for anyone to help the environment by planting trees! They plant trees in North America, South America, Asia, and Africa. Most of their projects help with restoration from forest fires, floods, providing jobs, building communities and protecting habitat for biodiversity. So an all round great organisation! ‘One Tree Planted’ work by collecting a large amount of donations. Then for each project they send the funds to their reforestation partners. They vet their partners to ensure that they maintain a tree survival rate of 80% - 90%. Depending on the project, their partners choose the best tree species to plant. Working with local communities to get them in the ground. Planting typically happens in the rainy season when the soil is wet and provides optimal conditions for tree survival. As of 4.07.19, ‘808 LONDON’ has helped to plant over 800 trees through clothing sales and direct tree purchases. One tree purchase = £1! £1 is such a small amount of money but when everyone comes together it makes such a big difference! I do thank everyone for supporting and planting trees through 808 LONDON. Truly amazing. If only some of our favourite major fashion retailers encompassed your practises, it would make such a difference. It’s prominent that the 808 LONDON brand is built upon principles and practises of sustainability. But what exactly does sustainability mean to you and the brand? Furthermore, how has this shaped your beliefs and endeavours within the fashion industry?
Sustainability is very important to me. Climate change is a medical emergency! It it demands an emergency response. Yet not many people are doing anything about it. If you think of global climate change like an iceberg, once you reach the peak and things start to change, there is no climbing up again once you start to slide down. It will start a clock ticking down the time we have left till planet earth is destroyed. 40% of all amphibians, 25% of all mammals, 31% of sharks are all at threat from extinction so that says a lot on how we as humans, the ones who started this, need to put a stop to it. Sustainability within our pieces is very important to me. Where our clothing is made - in London- is powered by solar energy and every item of our clothing has a minimum of 50% recycled yarn. Our new tees for SS19 are manufactured from organic cotton, this is better for the producers of the cotton as well as the ecosystem it is produced in. Before the cotton can be spun the seeds and petals need to be removed, the waste seeds are pressed into cakes to feed cows and the vegetable oil gathered is used for food products. Nothing gets wasted. Renewable energy (solar farms) are used throughout the supply chain producing the tees. I also discovered that your plant a tree incitative isn’t the only sustainable practices you uphold. Would you mind telling us more about the other environmental choices you imply within the brand?
Yes, even our packaging is sustainability. As of 2019 our packaging is made of 100% recyclable 220 gauge polythene. I think a lot of brands feel that taking a sustainable approach is more expensive. However it doesn’t necessarily mean it will not be successful. Has the brands experiences defied this narrative? Yes, this collection has been really successful even seeing many well known people support and plant trees with us from Paigey Cakey to female MC star Roxxxvn. If we had a time machine and we flashed forward to the future - where would you hope to see 808 LONDON and the sustainable practises the brand has initiated? If I had a time machine I would love to see ‘808 LONDON’ using 100% sustainable and recycled materials with a zero carbon footprint. I would also love for our partnership with ‘One Tree Planted’ the company planting trees all over the world with each sale of ‘808 LONDON’ to be sending out seed to our customers to plant their own flowers and trees here in the uk and globally. In think in terms of reforestation I would love to see a big change in how many trees are cut down vs how many are planted. Lets get there trees back up! I want to plant a million trees!
FREEDOM THROUGH POETRY FT EMMANUEL SPEAKS, DANIELLA OH, ASMAA FLOATS, KWAME SAYS, DONNELL ASARE & VERSE WRITER CREATIVE DIRECTION - AJI AYORINDE & BONITA DARKOH PHOTO - IBRAHIM KAMARA VIDEO - IBRAHIM KAMARA
CREATIVE DIRECTION - MAUREEN KARGBO PHOTO - SHENELL KENNEDY FILM - IBRAHIM KAMARA ASSISTANTS - STEPHANY ARHU & DINACHI ABALI TALENT - CATERINA SARCINELLI, JAHMIR DURAN, KING YANZ, PRINCESS & NINETY7
Ft Brent Faiyaz, BBZ, Novelist & more.