“Your place for African fashion”

June 2014 

At first Designs by Mariana (DBM) was created  out of a love for accessories and fashion. Creating something unique and special which will help someone to express himself and make her feel beautiful was the starting point. The aim group of DBM fashion are young and  trendy  women in the age group of 16 till around 30 years old. These women know  what they want or  those who want  to step out of their comfort zone and try out something different and new. DBM makes everyday fashion products which can be easily  combined with other items from your closet.

DBM is always evolving  and that’s why we’re doing more than only African fashion. DBM also provides a platform for young and talented women to help them shape their plans and meet other creatives. With this platform we want to support and help develop them to get to a higher level. By giving these young women a place where they can practise their talents it encourages them to be the best they can be and it builds up their self-confidence. It’s all about: EMPOWERMENT !!

In 2003 Mariana started her studies in fashion at the Fashion school in Amsterdam and in 2006 she graduated. Although she did not continue with another fashion education she always was always busy with fashion. The concept of DBM originated in October 2010. Back then she  mainly focused on creating different kinds of headbands from materials as satin, lace, fabric, elastic, robe and different kinds of haberdashery and applications. This went very well and because of that she desired to create more creative products. Now 2014 has come, and the past 4 years were a rollercoaster of ups and downs in regard to the products. Ups because of the many creative ideas that she has had and downs because it was not possible to put it into action due to her current study and lack of time.

Since December 2013 DBM has made her comeback. Currently she’s more focused on woman’s wear, accessories and products for your house. She makes all products herself by hand and with using  her sewing machine.
Within the brand DBM there are two labels. One is the “fixed label” and  the other is the “limited edition” label. The “fixed label” are products you will always find in the collection  and the “limited edition” are products that are being made in quantities of less than five pieces. Because of that, the “limited edition” label is very unique and exclusive.


Her love for Africa plays a big part in the products that she makes. This is especially visible in the African printed fabrics that she uses.
Why she’s started this label is becausee of 2 reasons:

1. Through African fashion she hopes that the youth from the African diaspora will find their link back to Africa (to the source)
She meet a lot of youth who don’t like to wear African attire or think it’s old fashion (only meant for our mothers or grandmothers), and this suprises her because “it’s OURS”! By designing modern designs and using traditional fabrics she wants to arouse them to start wearing their inheritance and to let them discover more of the African culture and history.

2. For others to discover the riches, culture and  beauty of Africa
Her goal is to make the wide African inspired fashion industry known worldwide. Why can everyone wear Western clothes and there’s still something in wearing African attire. She also wants to adapt the current view in runway shows.

For everyone who’s afraid to chase after their dreams: “Start small, step by step, building  your dream. Slowly but surely you’ll realize that you’re living out your dream” – Mariana N Zinga.

Don’t sit and wait for the opportunities to come, get up and make them – Madam C. J. Walker
Start where you are, Use what you have, Do what you can – Arthur Ashe
If you don’t build your dream, someone will hire you to help build theirs – Tony Gaskins