Product for review kindly provided by Milo + Nicki
Perfect for a sultry beach getaway, the pieces in the debut collection by Milo + Nicki have me dreaming of cerulean blue waters and warm summer breezes. From the markets of Bangkok to the beaches of Mykonos, the fabrics used in the collection travel well and add bright pops of colour and whimsy to any wardrobe. Ethically made in the USA and crafted entirely from cruelty-free and eco-friendly materials, it’s certainly a collection we can stand behind.
Founder and designer Nicki Patel took a leap of faith and launched her brand, named for herself and her beloved pup, Milo, after a series of stressful events, a health scare with Milo, and spending years pursuing a career that she ultimately found unfulfilling and uninspiring. Like so many of us who stray from the path we feel we’re intended to walk, Nicki realised that fear and anxiety was keeping her from reaching her true potential. She knew she wanted to do something that reflected her values and made a positive impact in the world, but didn’t know how she could make that happen. Inspiration struck when she began working for a small fashion company with a mission to help women feel their best; this mission would become Nicki’s own driving force that compelled her to launch her brand.
“I realised that my passion and purpose was my cure. With a drive to pursue what set my soul on fire while making a difference in the world, I began to see opportunities. With a lifelong passion for sustainability, the combination of these pieces became the formula for our mission. I was going to create a line that would allow me to inspire and empower other women to find what sets their souls on fire, while combating the rapidly changing world we live in, where societal pressures and life changes merge.”
The six-piece collection is a carefully curated homage to the five rocks in Nicki’s life: her pup, her parents, and her two older sisters – named and designed with each one in mind. The Amore Maxi, for example, has a relaxed fit suitable for all ages and body types and is inspired by her mother.
Taking influence from the designer’s Indian and Zambian roots, the collection is crafted from hand-loomed, made-to-order, certified Ahimsa ‘peace’ silk and GOTS certified organic cotton blend from India certified for authenticity, sustainability, and fair trade measures.
Nicki designed her collection to be versatile to appeal to any woman or girl and her lifestyle. The high-quality materials Nicki uses ensure that each piece will last and can be passed down from generation to generation. While the fit might be appealing and versatile to different women, the designs have a definite bohemian vibe; the woman who might find these designs appealing will most likely have a carefree attitude with a proclivity for daydreaming and adventure. She wants something with an easy and timeless silhouette, but that is at once playful, colourful and bold. She also cares about her impact on people, animals, and the planet, and searches for well-made clothing that respects all three concerns.
Everything about the collection is done with not only attention to each design, but with the utmost attention, care, and transparency necessary to ensure that each aspect of her supply chain utilizes sustainable materials and fair labour. In fact, in an effort to be truly transparent, Nicki has shared with her consumers an illustration outlining the costs to produce her Milano dress.
“We believe in designing clothes that last, and are made without compromising people, animals, or the planet,” says Nicki. “We care deeply about our planet and the people; from where we source our fabric, how it is produced, who touches the fabric in the entire process, and how the pieces are manufactured is something we are super nosey about. And we don’t mind it. This allows us to ensure that everyone and everything that is impacted by what we are creating is respected and cares just as deeply about our planet and people as we do.I want the pieces to empower women to feel confident, authentic and beautiful no matter what life throws at them while inspiring a movement of sustainable and ethical fashion and living.”
Nicki recently ended a successful Kickstarter campaign. With these funds, she’ll be able to move forward with her first run of production and launch her online shop. With a successful funding campaign under her belt, the future looks bright for Milo + Nicki.
This brand uses Ahimsa silk, which some vegans wear and others don’t. At Vilda, we applaud any conscious choice to minimise animal suffering and support all vegans’ free choice in whether they want to wear Ahimsa silk or not.
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Photos courtesy of Milo + Nicki.