Mai-Gidah s/s 2014. Interview for Ozon Raw


The designer was born in Ghana, lives and works in London, graduated from the St Niklaas School of Arts in Belgium in 2012 and his journey stretches ever on through Holland, Portugal and Italy.

The sources of inspiration for the Mai Gidah summer collection come from architecture, 16th century dress codes and modern London culture. Great emphasis is places on technique, high quality fabrics and refined materials, while a heavy dose of futurism is also to be found here. This combination of philosophies marks out designer Ale Ali’s need to find an ideal balance between a modern and classic outlook for his first spring collection. “I don’t really want to mass produce clothes. I want to awaken feelings and memories in people who come into contact with my work” His childhood memories as well as the historical places he has visited, all play a part in his collection, as it is his way of expressin a need to wear items of a very distinct character, which he has not been able to find in the marketplace. Ali is the brains behind the brand and what sets his creations apart is their unisex character, seeing as “our clothes don’t have a definite identity, they can be worn by men and women alike”, he admits to OZON.

You only design men’s clothes. Why is that?

My interest is mainly in men’s fashion, although I do occasionally design women’s clothes as well. It really depends on my mood and inspiration. The clothes I create are neither strictly for men nor for women. They ultimately defined by the person wearing them.

What makes you design?

After finishing my studies in Belgium, I moved to London not only because I like the city, but because it’s a place that offers you a lot of opportunities for professional progression. So I’m inspired by the city I live in, the varying cultures one finds here and how they connect is a larger version of what I try and do through my work. I always design while trying to take various elements from a number of cultures. I mean it makes sense to me; I come from Ghana, studies in Belgium, live in London and travel all over Europe.

Lazaros Tzovaras