1. How did you get to where you are today? Tell us a little bit about your journey.
Akazi came together two years ago when we were both at turning points in our lives. I had a lifelong love of textiles and design and experience in dressmaking and Pia had completed her Honours in Interior Design and was living in Melbourne at the time. We were both searching for something more, and it seemed an exciting opportunity to explore.
To be honest the concept of Akazi seemed to come quite naturally to both of us due to our close bond. We were inspired by our travels, life experiences and from living a simpler life for many years together in Africa. Our family lived in a remote area of Northern Malawi where there were very few shops or entertainment. We took our influences from the landscape, people and the natural world. I made all the children’s clothes and soft furnishings and the sewing machine came with us to each new home.
We respect each other’s capabilities and strengths and I think we admire each other’s skills. I’d say we have a growing mutual respect and that’s what makes this journey so special. We have organically designed together clothing that we both love and have found that our most popular customers are of similar ages to both of us.
2. Who is your ultimate muse / inspiration?
The classic women from the golden Hollywood years of early films. We began by naming our garments after these elegant stars.Women we are surrounded by. Each other. Clothing - Lee Mathews / Elizabeth Suzan / Issey Miyake