#FACESOFALCHEMIST | MICHELLE
Meet 33 year old Michelle, from Chile and Sweden, who is behind The clothing line @onehundredyearskenya and the Made in Kenya shop based at the Alchemist.
” The shop is like a blend of different brands, all made 100 percent in Kenya, and of super high quality, like Sandstorm, Pink Savannah and so on. One Hundred Years as the brand basically addresses the fact that there was no basic, functional locally made clothes being made and sold to the local market. Stuff like high quality shirts and t shirts and shorts. The fabric is readily available within East Africa as well, but since none was finding it’s way back to the local market, I saw the gap and decided to fill it. Buy Kenya, build Kenya, is what I keep saying.
Technically, one hundred years is how it all started out a year and a half ago, but as time went by we got the nickname Made in Kenya, and we kept the name in order to further the narrative that we are a totally local brand, and we set up shop at Alchemist because our target audience frequents here, which is great.
I started sewing at age 7, my grandfather made suits; he was a tailor, and my mother ended up teaching me how to sew pillowcases. I ended up ripping alot of other things just to make pillowcases, it was all I knew at the time! My mum then decided that she would teach me to make other things, and the interest in fashion all progressed from then on. I went to uni for marketing and web, but I would go to sewing classes after work to sharpen my skills.
My heart and soul is in old blues music, the likes of BB King, whenever I’m at home I pour myself a glass of wine and just soak it all in. Anything else that I listen to mainly is for the dance floor! Although party music in the car is also cool
Really simple what I like about the Alchemist, of course apart from my shop being based here. CHANGE. It’s a recurring theme here, and everyone who comes to this place embraces it. It’s never about the competition or comparing ourselves with other places. It’s all just good progress and forward thinking that make Alchemist a really special place.
The feeling of freedom makes me happy, and sort of sometimes retreating to a quiet place by myself that no one else knows. A memorable travel experience was that one time I got sick trying to get to the Mt. Everest base camp at 5400 meters. Showed me I’m not a mountain girl, I’m a city girl!
If I had 5 million dollars today, if give away half of it first, and I’d probably buy a piece of land in the Aberdares to have a nice country home to retreat to” #FacesofAlchemist