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Tags:   Babes,   Creative women,   Women

By Mila Camilleri   -  August 07, 2015

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Photo credit:  Kurt Paris

SWAG’s latest model is Scandinavian beauty, Mari Aho. Mari hails from Finland – Lapland to be exact. What started off as a visit to Malta to get away from the cold Arctic Circle, turned into a great opportunity. A fashion designer and blogger by trade, Mari has presented her very own collection during this year’s Malta Fashion Week, and aims to take her career as model, illustrator and stylist to a whole new level.



I studied a Bachelor of Culture and Arts degree in Finland and Sweden and majored in Fashion Design. I did a design internship for the Swedish jeans and clothing brand Cheap Monday in Stockholm. I used to model only on rare occasions when friends or their friends would ask me.


Modelling really started happening for me more just after moving to Malta, a bit more than a year ago. Here I also got my first job working behind the scenes on a film as a costume assistant. I also released my first actual collection after my studies and presented it at Malta Fashion Week at the new designers show.


I initially came to Malta for the summer of 2014 because one of my best and oldest friends had just moved here, and I was longing for the sun and warmth after living with the cold and grey of Scandinavia the past few years.


When it comes to models that influence me, I admire the ones who use their fame to do good, like Angelina Jolie and Natalia Vodianova with their charity work. Also those who have other talent besides using their looks inspire me, like model Karlie Kloss being a ballet dancer and studying computer coding in a high level university.


One of my best modelling achievements was at this year’s Malta Fashion Week, when I designed a collection and modelled for a friend’s show, as well as attended the rest of the shows with a media pass for blogging. Last year I was there as a blogger only, as I had just gotten to Malta a bit before. This also brought more views and readers to my blog.


Currently I’m working on getting my sewing machine fixed to make a few more pieces for my collection and shoot a lookbook, but in the meantime I’m modelling and hostessing.


I’m hoping to work more on the creative side of fashion, like in costume design for films, styling, editing for a publication or designing for a bigger, well-established fashion brand. I also want to find more time to design and make clothes for myself and get into illustrating again, maybe in terms of print design, because I feel bad about having a talent for drawing and leaving it unpracticed whenever I have other things going on.


I've had my share of funny encounters, but recently when I was asked to wear nude underwear for a fashion show, as they do, I realised my skin tone didn’t match my “nude” underwear any more. After spending days lying under the Mediterranean sun, the contrast was quite obvious, and the underwear being many shades lighter than my skin would show under any sheer fabric.


My ideal man is both handsome and smart. He’s also thoughtful, should consider my feelings, needs and wants – which is probably the best way to woo me. It’s also important for him to be himself, and not to try too hard to impress someone by bragging or sugar coating.


A great date would be a day on the beach or exploring some beautiful place, a dinner, wine and an interesting, easygoing conversation.


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