Michelle Parlett
  • Female
  • Brighton, East Sussex
  • United Kingdom
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Profile Information

Profession / role:
Company / organisation:
oh so Shika
Website (if you have one):
My primary role in relation to fashion is:
Designer, Manufacturer, Other
I am looking to discover or buy
Contacts and information and ideas to help us develop a successful and sustainable ethical fashion label
About me / About business or organisation:
I run a small UK charity called Shika. We provide educational opportunities to disadvantaged communities in Tanzania. We support around 150 people in Arusha. One of our projects is a sustainable clothing design business. We work with a group of talented but disadvantaged tailors and craftspeople to produce wearable clothing to be sold in the UK. All the profits generated by the clothing business support our educational projects.
Career history / Company history:
In 1996 I indulged my interest in fashion and studied an MA in fashion journalism at Central Saint Martins. Following this, I began a career in tv production with BBC Entertainment in London. I remained with BBC production until 2005 after producing a series on African Music. Following this I took a year out to work in international development with an HIV/AIDS homebased care organisation in Tanzania. The beautiful East African fabrics rekindled my interest in fashion and my volunteer experience fuelled my passion for development. Both inspired me to register an educational support charity called Shika and alongside it, a fair trade fashion enterprise, "oh so Shika", in 2006. My professional career has since reflected my interest in development and television production and in 2006 I joined Comic Relief as their Broadcast Manager. There I managed their tv production for the Red Nose Day and Sport Relief campaigns. I continue to undertake freelance work for Comic Relief, most recently producing appeal films for them for American Idol Gives Back and working on ongoing campaigns. I spend the remainder of my time developing our new social enterprise "Fair", a fair trade fashion boutique and retail outlet in Brighton, and developing Shika's educational programmes and oh so Shika's clothing line. I split my time between the UK and Tanzania.

Comment Wall (8 comments)

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At 21:16 on January 26, 2011, Colin Leslie Bamboo Eyewear said…

On the 17th feb at 7.00pm to 10.30 pm at the Brighton media centre

15-17 Middle St 
Brighton, Brighton and Hove BN1 1AL
Anupa Accessories will be having a special VIP launch Party introducing her wonderful fashions to the UK.
Colin Leslie eyewear will also be there to show his bamboo eyewear .
So come along , finally see for real the products you only know from pictures, bring a friend and your wallet ..special prices on the day ..
Free drink , Free food, and free entry...

Please confirm on the link http://anupa.net/launch-party  if you plan to turn up .
hope to see you there
At 11:04 on September 28, 2009, Andrew Nineham said…
Hi Michelle - thanks for your reply. Please could you send an email to me at andrew@group9uk.com as I would like to contact you directly.
Kind regards
At 10:00 on September 25, 2009, Prama Bhardwaj said…
Hi Michelle! I think the girl talking about fairtrade cotton from tanzania was possibly me. There isnt as yet any FairTrade certified cotton in East africa, but we're in discussion with FLO about it. We use the Bio Re organic cotton grown in Tanzania which is fairly traded - farmers are paid a premium and financed, social community projects are undertaken etc but even better its organic too! Drop me an email on prama@mantisworld.com or call on 020 7224 8991 and we can talk more. You could also find some information on our website www.mantisworld.com about the organic cotton range we hold in stock in the UK made in Tanzania (its called TLC).
Speak soon
At 13:45 on September 24, 2009, jacqueline said…
hey michelle

did you get much feedback from your post on the africa group?
i would be interested to hear as i too am working with africa and small cooperatives is my aim

be good to hear your story in more detail

you ve been on for amonth but welcome anyway!!

At 16:00 on September 23, 2009, Chantal Palmer said…
Michelle. In response to your request for suppliers in Tanzania - the person to reach out to is Prama Bhardwaj on the Africa network..
Let me know if she can help you.
At 5:37 on September 9, 2009, Udaya Bikram Thapa said…
Hello there Michelle,
I have been working with natural fibres in Nepal for a long time now and can supply you with fibre, yarns, textiles, as well as finished goods. Please have a look at www.heavenhemp.co.uk and www.wildweaves.co.uk to get an idea of what we do. I work with hemp, nettle, cactus, banana, bamboo . Hope to hear from you and would like to be your friend. Take care,
At 11:21 on August 17, 2009, Andrew Nineham said…
Hi Michelle, having originated from East Africa, I am really interested to hear about your project and involvement in Tanzania. I have recently started my own accountancy firm in Lymington, but my main focus is on assisting small businesses to start up and grow. If there is anything I can do to assist you with your project, I would welcome the opportunity. Kind regards Andrew
At 14:02 on August 16, 2009, David McGill said…
Hi Michelle, I really like the sound of your project.
You may be interested to know that I designed a Tanzanian tartan using the colours in the Tanzania flag which I use to generate funds for projects. The cloth is now being woven in Africa and I hope to introduce it to designers, dressmakers and manufacturers in Tanzania. If you would like to know more have a look at www.tartansforafrica.com and e-mail me at davidmcgill61@yahoo.co.uk

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