Style File: Mahsa Willis from Mahsa

Style File Mahsa

Mahsa Willis, founder and designer of Mahsa. Image supplied.

Mahsa Willis is the founder and designer of contemporary, eponymous label Mahsa which she launched in 2015. The label is known for it’s sensual pieces that beautifully balance utility and romanticism. Mahsa created the label as an ‘evolving reflection of her experience of the beauty and imperfection of life’. Her designs have a feeling of timelessness and elegance, and as an advocate for slow fashion, each piece is carefully made to last. After a two year break during the pandemic, Mahsa has returned with her fifth collection or ‘mood’ which has a spirit of optimism.

We caught up with Mahsa Willis to find out more about her brand, what inspires her and what you would never catch her wearing!

Tell us about your latest collection?

New Bohemia, my fifth mood, explores feelings like freedom, space, simplicity and having time – and asks us to make a shift in thinking, as well as a shift in dressing. While the wellbeing of the collective is always in our minds, we feel excited by the prospect of allowing ourselves to run with our own feelings again, seeking beauty, pleasure and adventure.

We see 70’s inspired prints and colours, shot in a wild bohemian retreat at Te Henga, Bethells Beach. Our Muse roams free in the garden wearing classic styles in new palettes, maple, sage and lilac and an oversized paisley. The Gala Shirt gives a sexy glimpse of skin between the triple ties on the front (or back, if you’d rather).

What inspires you?

My family and friends, my team, music, film and the ocean. Interiors and architecture are also sources of inspiration for me, I am slowly building my dream studio and I take my time to find the right piece whether that be a desk, a chair, a light, art…

I am also inspired by particular muses; Joan Baez, Joni Mitchell, Joan Didion, Bell Hooks…

Bell Hooks – “knowing how to be solitary is central to the art of loving. When we can be with others without using them as a means of escape” – Love the power of her words.

Style File Mahsa

Looks from Mahsa’s New Bohemia range.

Describe your personal style and how it influences your designs?

I would say it’s a classic mix of modern, utilitarian and feminine. Mahsa offers a wardrobe, a uniform in a gentle sense, and foundational pieces. I work on perfecting the best shirt, pants, trench, blazer – so that each piece feels intrinsically the best “fit”.

What is your all-time favourite purchase?

A Dries Van Noten trench coat, I love the Antwerp Six. I remember their influence on me well, when I was forming my fashion identity. Antwerp is the dreamiest place to wander in a coat and a great pair of shoes.

What wardrobe item should everyone invest in?

Perfume, beautiful underwear (& Mahsa).

What has been the highlight of your career so far?

Day 1 – Mahsa Label, I am extremely proud of where the brand is now, and the wonderful team that surrounds me.

Style File Mahsa

Looks from Mahsa’s New Bohemia range.

What can’t you live without?

Coffee, meditation, surfing, avocados and love – in no particular order.

Finish this sentence – You would never catch me wearing… 

A puffer jacket in summer.

Image supplied.