Two lifelong friends who were born, raised, educated and inspired by New York City are forging a social revolution with a fashionable twist.

NYC VIBE talked with Abrima Erwiah and Rosario Dawson about their collaborative social enterprise: Studio 189.

It’s not just about clothes…It’s about empowerment, education and opportunities for women through ethical and sustainable fashion!

From Ghana to New York City – The story of Studio 189 began in 2013 during Abrima and Rosario’s trip to Africa. As they toured numerous countries and villages on the African Continent, Abrima and Rosario decided that they could use fashion to make a difference in society. Their motivation is a deeply shared passion for “The power of collaboration with artisanal communities”.

Rosario and Abrima’s commitment to Studio 189 and their mission of empowerment is catching on in New York City. They have been praised in the pages of The Wall Street Journal and the New York Times. Studio 189 made a big splash at New York Fashion Week during the debut of their latest collection. In fact, Studio 189 received nearly as much attention as some of the iconic designers on the top runways throughout the city.

More and more New Yorkers are seeking a “Greener Lifestyle”. For New Yorkers with a sustainable agenda – The choices they make when purchasing goods are highly influenced by where the products came from, how the product was made and how the product affects the environment. Studio 189 has partnered with several sustainability minded organizations, including The United Nations International Trade Center’s Fashion Initiative.

As an actress in such memorable roles as Mimi Marquez in “Rent” – Rosario Dawson has always raised awareness and inspired people to see the world in a new light. Now with her Studio 189 partner Abrima Erwiah, Rosario is inspiring New Yorkers to take an active role in the empowerment of Women, and to look good while doing it!