Designer Sade Mims Is Blurring the Lines Between Fashion and Art
EDAS is our new favorite shopping destination.
Welcome to our How to Shop Like series, where we spotlight personalities within the fashion industry and take a deeper look at their personal relationship with fashion and how they shop—think all the best insider tips and tricks. This week we’re chatting with designer Sade Mims.
Art and fashion are two industries whose border often blurs. Identifying the point where art leaves off and fashion begins can prove a tricky task. Just ask artist and NYC-based EDAS designer Sade Mims, whose handmade accessories rival most works of art.
Her nostalgic creations evoke vintage silhouettes and are, as Mims describes, “designed for the eclectic being.” To Mims, EDAS is more than simply a creative outlet, but the way she speaks to the world. Each item is handcrafted and made from upcycled materials, so not only do the designs tell a story, but the process and materials do, as well. That same distinctive style is mimicked in the way Mims approaches her own closet: a respect for the old and a fresh outlook on the new.
When did you first fall in love with fashion?
“My love for fashion came directly from the people that raised me. My mother was someone who loved to incorporate oversize jackets with a chic leather boot and a ’90s baseball cap, and as a kid I was always so fascinated by that pairing. My father, a fan of the famous Philadelphia store Boyds, was always dapper and really instilled in me early on the power of dressing well—dressing to impress. Seeing these vivid examples of style during those young, impressionable years made me explore all that fashion was as I grew older.”
Why did you decide to launch your own line?
“I’ve always been an artist who loves to express and release. My process is very much unselfish in many ways. So developing EDAS felt right. Since I was a little one, I’ve always dreamed of having my own business, so when I got old enough to muster up the courage and confidence to start a brand, it felt right. EDAS is how I speak to the world; it’s my happy place and really works as a form of therapy for me. This form of freedom is unmatched.”
How would you describe your personal style? How does it compare to your designs?
“My personal style is a direct connection between my designs. I design for me and for people who identify with me stylistically. It’s colorful, bold, vivid, and oftentimes multigenerational. It reminds me of my pairing of vintage with contemporary designs, incorporating my love for old silhouettes, doubled with my excitement for youthfulness. I design with that same notion.”
Do you have a uniform?
“Chic and comfy—but also a heel, always!”
What do you let yourself splurge on?
“I love shoes. My shoes hold a very special place in my heart. So yeah, shoe splurging has become a real-life thing.”
What has been your favorite purchase of all time?
“This is really hard to say, as I am one of those deeply passionate people who has an intricate story for just about every item I own. But if I had to choose, I’d say there’s this maroon-colored suede jacket with floral eyelets decorating the entire piece. It’s divine and it was only $17. It’s truly my most coveted item to date.”
Where do you look for inspiration for your collections? Is your answer the same in terms of your own style?
“I look to my family. I look at the people who showed me what style was from an early age. I look to old photography and past times to find influence to design for now. There’s something so special about looking back to build the future. I find this process to be influential in every aspect of my life, too. It’s all-encompassing, all interconnected by the way the elders influence me. My personal style looks and feels the same exact way.”
Which season is your favorite to design for? To dress for?
“Fall/winter for both.”
Which stores do you frequent?
“I am an eBay fanatic. Fun fact: 96 percent of my closest is secondhand and vintage.”
What would your closet be full of if money were no object?
“Shoes and really beautiful dresses. I have this newfound love for long, well-tailored dresses these days.”
Vintage or new?
Your go-to accessories?
If you could envision one icon wearing your designs, who would it be?
“At this very moment, I’d say Nia Long. She’s such a timeless beauty, so that would just make me really happy to see her in our pieces.”
What does your current WFH wardrobe look like?
“It’s forever evolving, as I am a person who dresses depending on my current state of mind. But a running theme these days would be an oversize tee or button-up.”
Who are your favorite small fashion brands of the moment?
What are the top five most-worn items in your wardrobe?
What era of fashion is your favorite and why?
“The 1970s were just a really beautiful time of self-expression to me. It was fluid and fun, yet politically inclined and intentional.”
Photos: Austin Willis
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