If you ask a group of people to describe the West, you'll start to see a reoccurring theme. The words unique, passionate, community, and character will pepper the conversation - quite simply, there's nothing like it.
When Nana Addo decided to start his fashion label, he wanted to capture a similar feeling. Nada Igual means 'nothing equal' in Spanish, and it's a premise and promise that Nana delivers with each step his business takes.
"Design and colour are one thing, but barrier-breaking is the key. We want to present a lifestyle, not just product".
Nada Igual launched online in 2012, striving to ensure the cut, colours, and design of each range was like nothing worn before. Ever the boundary-pusher, Nana opened Journey by Nada Igual in 2016, a space that's half retailer shop, half barber.
"I fell in love with product and love seeing clothes on people. I’ll often compliment people in the street. I didn’t study fashion, I studied HR but for me people are the most important thing in business… I invest in people".
There's no denying Nana's passion. Energetic and enthusiastic, his energy filters through to his customers.
"People in the West are confident and know what they want. There's a good vibe here, it's multicultural, vibrant, and soulful".
Keeping things local is important to Nana; all the product is made in Melbourne, and the team is committed to working with the community.
"I love people, I invest in people and get involved in community stuff as much as we can. I’ve worked with west side football community raising money for great causes, such as the Cure For MND Foundation with Dyson Heppell, and the Essendon and Western Bulldogs boys pop in for haircuts. Working at Highpoint for 9 years now, I have been able to build strong relationships that are really important to me".
It's no surprise to hear Nana has grand plans for the label, with new stores and expansions on the horizon, but he's determined not to forget where it all began, nor the support he receives each and every day.
"When I think of the community here, I think togetherness, love, people coming together. The West has done a lot for me; it's helped me harness the people skills that I have, and given me opportunity. I'll definitely be here for a while".