Mizizi Clothing looks to Represent every African Country
Hip Hop and fashion have always been inextricably linked almost as closely as the marriage enjoyed by the culture and the music itself. As Africans looking to etch our own unique identity in Hip Hop finding the line where American influence ends and African inspiration begins has always been an ambiguous demarcation. Paakow Essandoh, the President and CEO of the Florida(USA) based MIZIZI streetwear brand is looking to find a way to merge American Hip Hop apparel with traditional African patterns and national flags in a unique way.
“MIZIZI came around the spring of 2014; it was originally conceived in the dining halls of USF. My friend George & I would spend hours just brainstorming ideas on different patterns and designs that could be marketable. We wanted to address the issue surrounding the lack of representation of African pride in Florida, as well as on a global scale. We wanted to uplift that African Self-Esteem within everyone and give them something they can wear stylishly and take pride in.
His clothing line targets Africans the diaspora looking to represent their nations with modern designs. Mizizi has also recently launched a campaign titled the The Mizizi Afrikan Games Campaign – unless you have been living under a rock for the past 2 weeks you will understand the significance surrounding the timing of this release.
“In light of the excitement surrounding the games this summer, we wanted to have something for everyone so that they would feel represented. In the past, we’ve had collections that only featured certain countries. This time, we wanted to take it to the next level by introducing something that everyone can be a part of, and no one would feel left out.”
The campaign marks the release if Mizizi’s largest collection to date and features a line of Basketball jerseys that represent each and every African nation. The line will only be available for limited time and will soon be discontinued.
In recent weeks social media has been awash with horror tales from disgruntled customers of various online boutiques and stores who felt that they had been swindled by these virtual stores and designers. I spoke to Essandoh about my concerns via email
Because unlike many, MIZIZI is a very customer-centric business. Our process isn’t because we are bent on delivering quality- from designs to communications to sales. It’s a “for us, by us” model; we identify with our customer, because we are them, so we know what they expect and we commit to exceeding those expectations in every facet.