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Home > Blog > How to wear the Mombasa print with Styled by Sian
How to wear the Mombasa print with Styled by Sian
10th April 2019

How to wear the Mombasa print with Styled by Sian

Many of you will remember the beautiful Sian from her time spent with us as a wonderful print designer and stylist. Whilst we were sad to see her leave Nomads, we are so thrilled to see her flying high running her own personal styling business in London - Styled By Sian. As this season sees the release of Sian’s final Nomads print design – the bold, geometric Mombasa print – we asked her to share how she’s styling these pieces.


Nomads clothing will always have a huge place in my heart. After almost a year of interning in various print studios and working abroad for a year they gave me my first opportunity to really use my degree in print design and become part of a team. 

As a teenager, I was obsessed with their recycled Sari collections and whenever I visited Bude, I’d rush up to Wild wood (a Nomads Clothing stockist) and see how many silky trousers and skirts I could justify buying. Little did I know I’d be their design assistant a good few years later!

My time at Nomads was incredibly special. I couldn’t have asked for a better introduction to the world of design and discovering how independent brands work. I started off part time and by the end of my two years with them I had managed to wangle a full time position and had my fingers in as many places as I could get them. I had two desks by the end! It was the first place I ever felt valued and very much part of a team. Nomads nurtured, trusted and encouraged me and without them I wouldn’t be who or where I am today. 

girl holding white iphonegirl sat on bench in red panelled room drinking mug

Now, I run my own personal styling business in London. I work with individuals and help them learn about their bodies and how they can extend their personalities through the way they dress. How the art of dressing can transform them to become the best version of themselves. It is an incredibly rewarding job and relies on my relationship with the client, styling skills and my intuition. No day is the same. Do check out my services page to see how I can help you. 

Nomads reached out to me last month and asked if I wanted to write a guest blog about my final print for them. I was over the moon to have been asked and have been excited to get started ever since. They have kindly sent me two outfits in my Mombasa print, which I had a blast styling yesterday.

The Mombasa print echoes Nomads ethos – intricate and traditional details inspired by distant cultures but with a hint of contemporary flair.  Colour and texture gives it that signature Nomads look. 

My print handwriting has always been geometrics. The shapes within shapes that are then created inspire me. I draw by hand to ensure it has that authentic feel and then rework digitally by adding colour and making sure it works as a repeat.  Adding hue is when it really starts to come alive. 

I believe the Mombasa print is just what you need in your Spring Summer wardrobe. Feminine but striking it will be the print that will become your go to this season. I have styled two looks from the Mombasa collection but in ways that show you how versatile they are and how they will easily take you from day to night.


The wide leg trousers with the printed vest -

printed wide leg trousers and printed vest geometric print girl in green gardenPrinted viscose trousers and printed vest girl jumping smiling

I combined these two pieces because being the same fabric and print colourway, I believed I could make it look like a super trendy jumpsuit. Something that Nomads hasn’t quite ventured into yet (no hints there, Kate!). I combined the first look very simply with my glittery high top converse but if the glitters too much for you – a plain pair will do the job nicely. I felt relaxed and comfy in this combo and liked that by simply tucking in the vest to the trousers, I easily created a statement look without trying.  I think it’s a great outfit for everyday sunshine and days out exploring with your families. 

To move the outfit on to become more considered (I’m thinking BBQ or girls night) I added my favourite tan belt from India and block heel sandals. Adding a belt cinches you in more at the waist, which draws attention to the narrowest part of the body. The heels add height – who doesn’t want to look slimmer, feel taller and look effortlessly more sophisticated?! I would also add a pair of statement earrings if you were really going for it.  

girl walking down street wearing printed jumpsuitGirl walking in park wearing printed vest and wide leg trousers

Lots of people are nervous of a wide leg trouser. I cannot recommend them enough. Wide legged trousers are perfect for putting your body into proportion, which is when our figures look their best. If you are a petite lady and regularly drown in fabric, fear not  – all you have to do is take a trip to your local tailor who can take them up a few inches. 

The split side maxi – 

Girl in printed maxi dress in park with denim jacketgirl wearing maxi dress with denim jacket in park

If I was to recommend one item for every woman to have in her summer wardrobe – it must be the maxi. Maxi dresses are the definition of versatile and floating around all day in one really does make you feel fabulous – trust me! The great thing about the lightweight viscose Mombasa dress is that it comes with a waist tie so you can show off that waist of yours. Or if like me, your waist doesn’t really exist you can remove the tie and let it be free (great if you’ve had a big brunch too) 

I styled the maxi for daytime with my silver converse (I know – dialed it back a bit on the footwear for this one) and my trusty denim jacket. You could also layer the white pleat detail shirt over the dress and tie it at the waist. The Jacquard jacket would make a fabulous denim jacket replacement if you aren’t a fan of them. Think flat sandals in the summer sunshine or tights and boots in the winter – Yes maxis are amazing transeasonal pieces too!  The cost per wear just goes down and down. 

For the night-time look – I’m thinking a party or date night - change your trainers to some wedges. Personally, I like a platform but an espadrille or again, block heel will work wonderfully. I like to get my toes out in the summer as it elongates your legs (as do peep toe shoes) then complete with a big bangle or earrings (The Nomads Daughters of the Ganges ethical jewellery range is just perfect!), lippy and a pleather jacket. I have had mine for years and I don’t know what I would do without it.  

girl wearing printed maxi dress and leather jacketprinted maxi dress with black wedges park

So, there you have it, two looks, four ways and some super simple but effective styling tips for you. Please don’t hesitate to get in touch with me for more advice or if you would like to know which Nomads pieces would work for yourself.  

It has been SUCH a pleasure to write and style this and I hope you have enjoyed reading my first guest blog for Nomads. It feels fantastic to have been back briefly. 

Do follow me on Instagram and Facebook.

Love Sian x


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