St. Martin's personality : Milkaya Laïjah
"I believe that clothes should be worn by women above all to flatter them, make them desirable and attractive. However, this should be done in an intelligent way since sensuality can easily switch into vulgarity".
Milkaya has always been passionate about illustration and art but it was in her early teenage years that her love and interest for fashion-designing developed. Back then she lived in Saint-Martin FWI and kept herself informed about the fashion industry through magazines, books and television, but being a fashion-designer still seemed as a far-fetched dream.
With her family’s support and after 3 years in college (English literature & civilization), Milkaya moved to Paris and integrated ESMOD, the renowned and selective international school of fashion-designing and pattern-drafting. Mostly motivated by fashion designing, it was at school that her interest and then love for sewing finally grew.
Milkaya’s inspirations over the years never changed, the main source being her father's, Ras Mosera, paintings representing above all proud, beautiful, luxurious and outrageously sensual Black women. Along the line, the upcoming designer realized that she wanted to create clothes for all women who are proud of their sensuality, their body and who are willing to flaunt it.
Milkaya graduated in 2007 at ESMOD and started working on her own fashion line. Her skills in subliming women’s beauty quickly opened the doors of the style-makeover industry as she started working as a fashion-stylist with a well-known style-makeover agency in Paris. Three years later, in 2010, the young designer finally revealed her line, MILKAYA LAIJAH, and presented a first collection called “Ethni-Rock” at Jamaica's Caribbean Fashion Week, blowing a breath of fresh air in the fashion show. This first break-through was unexpected as her line raised interests, from a subtle balance between Africanism and rock couture. Her second collection was presented a year later under the ambitious name, “The Badass Collection”. Inspired by female superheroes and pop-culture, her new garments caught the eyes by their sharp-edged lines, vivid colors and bold leather details.
Quickly after, Milkaya’s work is discovered by the fashion site for young designers, Mondéfilé.com, and they have been in a steady and fructuous collaboration ever since. The Caribbean designer has created exclusive pieces for the site that are now their iconic best-sellers as she is currently working on an exquisite summer collection. So far, Milkaya Laïjah released three mini-collections for Mondéfilé.com under the label “Milkaya Laïjah pour Mondéfilé.com”.