SOLO Mila is a brand of upcycled denim wear founded by designer Mili. Mili describes her newly launched brand as creating individual recycling art. This is inspired by her innovative approach to creating clothing in a sustainable and individual way without limiting the flair of her designs. Her makeshift attitude to entering the design world evidences a maverick ambition which will surely be instrumental to her brand’s success.
Glass interviews Mili on her aspirations for her brand.
What motivated you to center your design ethic around sustainability? Aesthetics is a personal matter and for myself I can say that I’m an old soul. Jeans represents tradition and it’s fashion by itself. Everything has already been done. I think fashion is not about what you wear but who you are.
How do you source the designer jeans to upcylce?
The first jacket was made of my old Diesel jeans and I had dreamed about it for a long time. I started pestering people around me to bring me old jeans that they no longer use. That was the start. Nowadays I work with companies that collect used clothes.
What processes do you use to turn unwanted jeans into entirely new statement fashion pieces?
First I wash the old jeans at 100 degrees, then I completely dismantle the trousers so they are unrecognizable and only then the new design process begins.
A design by Solo Mila
What do you like about working with denim?
Everything. I see new, improved, fashionable product in every pair of old jeans that I get. I’ve made a wedding dress as well. It was fabulous.
Does sportswear influence your designs?
All of my pieces are sport couture and comfortable to wear. I want to get close to sportswear in a high fashion way.
In what other ways do you upcycle unwanted clothing or accessories aside from reusing denim?
My second love is leather and I’m already dreaming of it.
How would you describe your consumers?
My consumers are self confident, comfortable, they dare, they dream, they are remembered.
A design by Solo Mila
What other interests do you have outside of your career?
At the very top, my two children, beside that I’m an adrenalin freak, love car racing, motorcycles that kind of thing. Then we have music.
How does it make you feel to be doing something that can only be good for the planet?
If recycling jeans is my contribution to save the planet, I’m proud of it.
What are you looking forward to working towards in the future?
I’m already working on my mens collection, and then I’m thinking of unisex version of my jeans. Have lots of ideas for the future so I think there will be lots of jeans saved.
by Livia Feltham