Mixed Spices is the brainchild of Ashtart Al-Hurra. The brand had its beginnings as a weekly show on her university’s radio station, where it was jokingly named ‘The Mixed Spice Show’ because all of those regularly involved were mixed race women who had been unwantingly fetishized in some way. The aim of the show was for it to be a space centered on the lives and experiences of these women of colour, who were frustrated with the lack of diversity both generally in the media and in their university’s curriculum.
The Mixed Spice Show soon evolved into Mixed Spices, a more structured biweekly podcast with a focus on music and activism. The updated podcast featured interviews, mixes and music from femme, queer and woc creatives, as well as a ‘free chat’ segment which provided listeners with a real insight into the people behind the projects, including the many issues they had faced both in the industry and outside of it because of their identities.
The intention of this was to create a kind of self-reflexive, fourth wall breaking DIY radio that went up against the glamourisation and shallowness inherently found in many forms of media, including some of those which deem themselves to be counter culture. It also became a good platform for different creatives to get to know each other in a meaningful way and strengthen relationships of solidarity between those who are marginalised both in the creative industries and more generally in society.
Today, Mixed Spices has transitioned from a radio format to the website you see before you. The main reason for this huge change is to make the platform even more accessible to the people it was made for. To make it as easy as possible for femmes, queers and woc to get involved, share information, experiences and creative work without the restriction of needing access to a physical safe space or expensive specialist equipment.
Mixed Spices is an angry, uncensored and unapologetic platform created by queer femmes of colour to promote the work of people like us, and to combat the issues we face in society. We would like to think that similarly to our format, our brand name has evolved from representing the frustrations of a few angry mixed race girls studying a mostly white curriculum, into something which stands for diversity in a much wider respect.
All flavours welcome. Stay spicy.