Culture x Funk: Meet Waridi Valentine

It's Women's History Month and we are chatting with a few funky sweethearts whose styles we love. Each woman is very different from the other; collectively they embody Nakimuli: The Funky Sweetheart.
Waridi is such a special person to us here at Nakimuli; she started out as simply a customer (and one of our most loyal ones), then became a good friend. We have even sold several pieces from her accessory line. Waridi is a sweet soul whose passion for community development here in the US and in Tanzania is admirable and inspiring. 



Wearing: Nakimuli Asymmetrical Mudcloth Vest, Nakimuli Alyssa Skirt in dark brown, and Nakimuli Dookie Bracelet (all Waridi's own)


What was the first item that made you fall in love with Nakimuli?
When I saw the Nakimuli green Mermaid skirt on Tumblr several years ago. I fell in love. When I saw that the brand offered the same styles in straight and plus sizes, I was hooked. I have been shopping with Nakimuli ever since.


How would you describe your style?
A bright, funky, and eclectic collaboration of the African Diaspora.


Who are your style icons?
Erykah Badu, Lisa Bonet, Rose Valentine (my mother)…free forming black women.


Wearing: Nakimuli Vintage Red Hot Africa Duster, Nakimuli Dookie Bracelets (all Waridi's own)


What fashion/beauty trends are you loving at the moment?

As a Tanzanian woman, I am happy about the evident embrace of Afrocentric styles and textures, and appreciation for cultural and traditional styles. The use of prints, bold colors and embroideries.


What fashion rule do you love to break?
Non-matching pairs: earrings, bracelets, socks. I am a nonconformist.


What is the best advice you ever received?
"It’s your body. You love it. Embrace it. Show it." - My mother


What is your fashion/beauty philosophy?
Big and bold. Big hair. Bold eyeliner and lipstick. And big shoulder pads if necessary.


Wearing: Nakimuli Vintage XXO Coat, Nakimuli Alyssa Crop Top in dark brown (Waridi's own), and Nakimuli Brush Strokes Asymmetrical Peplum Skirt (Waridi's own)
Who has had a major influence on you and your style?
I tend not to follow trends, I dress off of mood and convenience. I appreciate the movement of sustainable fashion of reutilizing materials and independent designers that help shape style. As a sustainable fashion designer, I might be biased but “Fast fashion is dead.”


What are 3 things you can't live without?

My family, music, and incenses (Oudh)


If you could go back in time, what era would you go to?
I would go back to the early 1960s. I would like to be apart of the early days when Tanzania received its independence. I would like to been a part of the movement and development, with the people. I would like to highlight the supporting contribution of the women in that era.



What is your guilty pleasure?
Bingeing watching unsolved crime mysteries and documentaries about crime.  


What is one thing most people would be surprised to know about you?
My brother and I are born on the same day, and are exactly seven years apart. I am eldest..and wisest. So we like twins but the opposite, and in no way possible. 


What is the last thing you googled?
Investigative research for my Masters capstone (thesis). My research involves the support of organizations that empower women in Tanzania within the coffee industry in Kilimanjaro.



What are your favorite places to travel?

My go to place is Zanzibar. The Tanzanian island, Zanzibari, is so secluded but inclusive, vibrant and yet traditional. I named my accessory line Zanzibari ArtWear and brand Peace Of Culture because I appreciated integrating styles and textures of all over that encapsulates my experiences, and my endless love for Zanzibar.


What would be the title of your memoir?

I would use, “Peace Of Culture” again. I lived in seven countries and ten cities by the age of eighteen. As a third culture kid most of my experiences were outside of Tanzania and the US. A lot of my skills integrate collaboration of various mediums either from designing of aesthetics or reshaping communities from other countries.


What is one of your most proudest moments?

I am proud of myself and my growth. These are my proudest moments. It took me awhile to complete my undergraduate degree dealing with life and working full time. I am most proud of being accepted into the Pratt Institute Design Management Masters Program, especially since it is recognized as the 5th best in the world in my field. I am  proud that I have excelled and managed to continue to obtain a high GPA. I graduate May 2018. I am ready!



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