An Interview With Nawel From Good Girl Gang
Ahead of our upcoming event in collaboration with XXY Magazine and Good Girl Gang at our Cheshire Street store we spoke to Nawel from Good Girl Gang to discuss all things DIY, sustainability and feminism.
Good Girl Gang started in 2016 as “a means to create clothing for the underrepresented,” and you can see this reflected in every design the sell. Hand drawn and hand printed using handmade silk screens they create unique designs that celebrate a range of different marginalised people by putting them at the centre of all their beautiful designs… these are no means your average high-street graphic tees with faux-asian writing and cringe-worthy slogans. *eye roll*. Just when you think their t-shirts couldn’t get any better, they’re also printed on organic cotton for a more sustainable approach to fashion. Their website describes the collection as “a love letter to feminism and all things girl power” and we’d have to agree with that.
Tahmina Begum from XXY Magazine models a GGG t-shirt
Where did the idea to start Good Girl Gang come from?
It all started after leaving an unfulfilling art foundation course, looking for a way to not only continue my artistic interests but build something in which me and my cousin could feel represented, hence the birth of our first t shirt, ‘brown girl power’! We hadn’t really come across clothing in the market for women of colour to really resonate with, so decided to create a small collection of tees like ‘melanin blessed’, ‘not your babe’ & ‘not exotic’, which were received with amazing support and love!!!
GGG tees are beautiful and humorous, seeming to represent both the women who make them and those who wear them. Where do you get the inspiration from for your designs?
I find inspiration is present everywhere I look! I usually don’t find it in one specific place, but through music, films or even tense family debates. Conversing with people about a wide range of discussions, can really cultivate ideas for what to put on a t-shirt next. Random things like talking about why brown guys are excused from house work while the girls seem to be the ones cleaning up after everyone with my grandma, usually is inspiration enough!
Do you find screen-printing to be a mindful, calming process for you where you can channel anger or emotions through or is it strictly work?
I 100% find it an extremely therapeutic process. As I am self taught, I do run into majorly infuriating issues that can only be resolved through trial and error which can be a bit debilitating and get me feeling furious but it’s nice to know I can learn from my mistakes and become not only a better screen printer, but work on myself in the process, turning seemingly unresolvable problems into calming solutions.
How do you incorporate mindfulness and self-care into your daily routine?
I tend to resort to music & films when practicing self care. Seeing what people are currently creating can be really inspiring for me and aid me in being motivated with my own work. Also tending to indulge in some alone time, be it going on an evening walk or a trip to the cinema, it’s nice to reserve some time for yourself.
We’re really excited for the event on the 13th, what can we expect from your screen-printing workshop and in what ways do you think it would be a good way for someone to get involved in mindfulness if they haven’t before?
It’s going to be a super fun day and I’m so excited to take part! I’ll be running a little printing station where you can make your own prints to take home and also just learn a lil something new! It’s going to a very calm night, full of lots of love and great people, a wholesome way to end the day!
We love to support boss-ass babes disrupting the industry with new approaches, so we are excited to have Good Girl Gang at our Mindfulness evening on the 13th June. We’ll have screen-printing workshops as well as zine-making and a feminist book swap, for a wholesome evening of self-care, self-love and celebration. If you haven’t already check out XXY Mag and Good Girl Gang on Instagram and be sure to get your tickets to the event here.
Words by Eloise Gendry