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Middletown native, 21, sells sporty street fashion worldwide as First Twelve



MIDDLETOWN Both athletic and artsy, Dillon Milardo was that student in high school who always managed to fit into a diverse range of social circles.

The Middletown native took his unique combination of talent and charisma and turned it into a unisex clothing line that fuses his interests in art and design with his desire to see Middletown evolve into a fashion-forward city.

First Twelve Clothing — which started as an e-commerce business — opened its first brick-and-mortar location Nov. 1 in Main Street Market at 386 Main St.

The line is the brainchild of 21-year-old Milardo, a Central Connecticut State University senior, and his friend Dave Ambrose — a senior accounting major at the New Britain college.

And the brand’s identity harkens back to Milardo’s dormitory at the state university.

“The name comes from my suite number from my freshman year of college (Suite 112). When broken down, it literally means: first floor suite 12, therefore ‘First Twelve’ came to be. This was the room where the idea was came to be and came into fruition.

“It was our first idea for a name and we just knew it was right,” Milardo said.

In the summer of 2013, the two friends and former roommates put action behind their idea to create a line that could bring the “anything goes” fashion-forward look and feel of New York City to Middletown.

“I love Middletown. I’ve always been very prideful of the city and I always saw potential in Middletown in terms of the style of life,” said Milardo.

“Also, being somebody who loves New York City and goes there frequently because of the lifestyle and the atmosphere, I always say to myself, ‘Middletown could be a little piece of that.’”

Initially, when Milardo and Ambrose, 23, of Wallingford, started their e-commerce business — with Milardo serving as the designer and owner and Ambrose tackling the chief financial officer duties — response trickled in slowly.

The pair’s big break came shortly after the launch when First Twelve Clothing found its way onto the radar of the team at Complex Media. The company publishes Complex Magazine and is a new media powerhouse boasting a monthly reach of over 60 million “music, style, sports and gaming enthusiasts,” according to its website.

First Twelve appeared on the list of “10 Streetwear Brands Worth Checking Out Right Now.”

Milardo said that the recognition from Complex pushed the clothing line’s response into high gear and interest began pouring in from across the country and even internationally.

Today, First Twelve has retailers in Hong Kong, Detroit and SoHo, New York.

Milardo, whose grandmother was a seamstress in Middletown, taught himself to sew but quickly learned that it would be necessary to outsource his original designs to factories for mass production.

“I completely design the range of products. I design everything from scratch — the colors, the logos, the cut of the shirts, the measurements,” said Milardo, a 2010 graduate of Middletown High School and honor roll student.

“Then, I’ll outsource it to the factory and get it mass produced. There’s a factory in Portugal and there’s a factory in India and a few others that are good at making high-end sportswear.”

The line is made from various materials: soft cottons, polyesters, breathable polyester, moisture-wicking fabrics, and fleece and polar fleece for outwear,” he explains.

Milardo said that while he has placed a lot of emphasis on creating a stylish line of clothing, he is also interested in using his clothing designs to create cultural commentary.

“[The clothing] is a fusion of street and sportswear but I always like to say that’s really just the basis of it; it’s seasoned with a combination of different cultural identities,” explained Milardo.

“I like to investigate different countries — their style of life, how they dress, the way they do things in everyday life. I like to add little bits of that into the clothing so that it could make the clothing — not just sports- or streetwear — but a little more thought-provoking.”

Ambrose, while he is charged with handling the business’ finances, said he and Milardo are adamant about keeping the focus off of simply making a profit.

“Making money is important but we want to make a difference,” said Ambrose. “Money is more of a way to make the business effective.”

Majoring in fine arts with a focus on painting and illustration, Milardo has organized First Twelve’s store hours around his demanding school schedule.

The store is open Mondays and Wednesdays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.; and on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9 a.m. to 1 and 4 to 7 p.m.

Milardo said he stumbled upon the Main Street location that he ultimately decided to lease and make the home of First Twelve.

“When I saw [the location], it had that small New York City boutique look which is what we were going for and it didn’t really require that much work to be done to it. It looked almost like an art gallery,” said Milardo.

Their website, firsttwelveclothing.com, is home to their e-commerce business and accepts orders which can be shipped domestically and internationally.

Milardo said the average cost of a shirt on the website is $55 but prices are reduced at the Middletown store location.

Follow First Twelve on Facebook at http://on.fb.me/1FfNbDp or email firsttwelveclothing@gmail.com.

Article source: http://www.middletownpress.com/business/20141123/middletown-native-21-sells-sporty-street-fashion-worldwide-as-first-twelve

Street fashion: Head start

A hairstyle should be approached in exactly the same way as clothing. Ask yourself the following questions: does the color wash you out or make you look vibrant; does the style flatter you and reflect your personality; is the cut outdated or trendy; and does the upkeep suit your lifestyle? Changing a hairstyle is one of the quickest and least costly ways to revitalize your look.Off-beat style
With a rainbow of colors in her hair, Einav, a hat designer from Tel Aviv, immediately attracts our attention.

Are the stripes of color in your hair just a one-time look?

“No, for the last two years I have been putting gradients of color in my hair and before that I was blonde.

Read More…

Article source: http://www.jpost.com/Metro/Street-fashion-Head-start-382349

Fashion University

What are Ivy Leaguers wearing this fall? At Yale’s New Haven, Connecticut, campus, it’s a mix of preppy essentials, “athleisure” gear, and—no surprise—varsity sweaters. Give us a Y!

Article source: http://www.style.com/street/scenes/2014/best-college-street-style-yale

Sisters launch Asian street style boutique from Newcastle’s China Town

Two fashionista sisters from Newcastle have launched an alternative Asian ‘street style’ clothing shop online.

Carmen and Katie Ho set up HAKKA Fashion in July, aimed at 18-25 year-old women in search of Asian street style clothing – a trend which has pervaded western culture in recent years.

Based out of their China Town studio, the sisters have seen traffic to their site increase by 30-50% each week since launching.

Now 24 year-old Carmen and 22 year-old Katie are planning to design their own collection to be marketed under the HAKKA label.

Carmen said: “Katie and I have always loved fashion, especially experimenting with different styles and prints, but felt that the fun looks that an edgy, Asian style emulate weren’t readily available in the UK.

“Having spent a lot of time selling our still-new clothes on eBay to be able to afford the newer trends, we realised we could be turning our shared clothing passion into a viable business.

“With the increasing prominence of online shopping, we sought the guidance of our family and friends and decided that the time was right to go for it, and HAKKA Fashion was born.”

The Ho sisters model some of the 18 different global brands they stock, and have recently received interest from labels famously worn by Miley Cyrus and Lady GaGa.

Carmen added: “Everyone should embrace their own style and never apologise for it. We are passionate about encouraging our customers experiment with unique looks, enabling them to stand out from the crowd in the best possible way.

“Asian street fashion is quickly becoming the next big thing. We should all embrace fashion influences from other cultures or countries, put a little twist on it and give women the confidence to wear their look in a more stylish way. If we can wear it and look good, then so can anyone.”

Named after the native Hakka Chinese language spoken by their parents, HAKKA Fashion was created to honour their heritage. Carmen explained: “We don’t want our westernised persona to lose its roots so HAKKA seemed an ideal label name.

“We are also working towards marketing the brand towards East and South East Asia over the next 12 months and share the best in ‘quirky’ Asian street fashion online, both locally and internationally.”

The e-commerce online boutique, at www.hakkafashion.com , can take direct payment from Payment Sense and is PCIDSS protected.

Article source: http://www.thejournal.co.uk/business/business-news/sisters-launch-asian-street-style-8120916

Former Liverpool misfit Ryan Babel releases street fashion range branded ‘YNWA’

  • Ryan Babel has released a clothing range bearing the initials of Liverpool’s famous ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’ anthem
  • The Dutch forward spent a largely forgettable four seasons at Anfield
  • The 27-year-old currently plays for Turkish Super Lig side Kasimpasa 

Richard Arrowsmith for MailOnline

21

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Ryan Babel’s time at Liverpool wasn’t particularly memorable, but Anfield still seems to hold a place in his heart after the Dutch winger released a clothing range branded ‘YNWA’.

The 27-year-old was signed by Rafa Benitez in 2007 and spent four uninspiring seasons on Merseyside – where arguably his most remarkable act was receiving a £10,000 fine for posting a picture of then referee Howard Webb wearing a Manchester United shirt on his Twitter account.

The former Holland international, who is now plying his trade for mid-table Kasimpasa in the Turkish Super Lig, returned to social media to reveal his fashion range bearing the acronym of Liverpool’s famous ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’ anthem.

VIDEO Scroll down to watch Ryan Babel hits the streets wearing YNWA 

Ryan Babel posted a picture of himself dressed in YNWA clothing on his Instagram account

Ryan Babel posted a picture of himself dressed in YNWA clothing on his Instagram account

Babel's fashion range includes baseball caps - which are fortunately colour co-ordinated with his Bentley

Babel’s fashion range includes baseball caps – which are fortunately colour co-ordinated with his Bentley

Babel's promotional video sees him choosing a restaurant to try on his new threads

Babel’s promotional video sees him choosing a restaurant to try on his new threads

Despite the 'You'll Never Walk Alone' branding, Babel wanders the streets accompanied by a friend

Despite the ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’ branding, Babel wanders the streets accompanied by a friend

No promotional video is complete without a thumping soundtrack and moody stare into the distance

No promotional video is complete without a thumping soundtrack and moody stare into the distance

The streetwear range appears to include baseball caps, beanies and sweatshirts emblazoned with the YNWA logo – which Liverpool fans may be pleased to learn comes in colours that co-ordinate with a Bentley sports car.

The release is also accompanied by a promotional video featuring the player dressing up in a restaurant before roaming the streets of Istanbul nodding his head to a hip hop soundtrack… as you do.

Whether the Dutchman’s choice of brand name will endear himself to Reds fans – who may remember him better as ‘Babelcopter’ after a failed aerial dash to London to sign for Totenham or West Ham in 2010 – remains to be seen. 

The former Holland international spent four uninspiring seasons at Liverpool between 2007-11

The former Holland international spent four uninspiring seasons at Liverpool between 2007-11

 

 

 


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Article source: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-2836649/Former-Liverpool-misfit-Ryan-Babel-releases-street-fashion-range-branded-YNWA.html

EXCLUSIVE: Street Style with Fashion blogger Nuala Gorham

Caitlin McBride

Published 14/11/2014 | 15:14

Black fedora, €24.95; watch, €34.95; black bag, €44.95

Black fedora, €24.95; watch, €34.95; black bag, €44.95
Yellow and black scarf, €19.95; black bag, €32.95; sunglasses. €`17.95; black boots, €49.95
She wears sunglasses and scarf as before
She wears a scarf, €14.95; brown belt, €8.95; grey tote, €24.95
She wears accessories as before
Croc clutch, €19.95 and scarf, €29.95
Burgundy fedora, €24.95; grey clutch, €39.95; gloves, €17.95; watch, €32.95
She wears gloves and watch as before
Cream wrap scarf, €17.95; watch, €32.95; pumps, €24.95; brown tote, €39.95; sunglasses, €17.95; double ring, €5.99; ring back, €6.95
Black beaded necklace, €17.95; black sandals, €34.95; sunglasses, €12.95; box clutch, €32.95; watch, €32.95
Black beaded necklace, €17.95; sunglasses,€12.95

In the latest instalment of our Street Style spotlight series, fashion blogger Nuala Gorham shows us her killer autumn/winter fashion.

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Article source: http://www.independent.ie/style/fashion/style-talk/exclusive-street-style-with-fashion-blogger-nuala-gorham-30744851.html

Neneh Cherry’s street style hits: ‘I looked like the female Muhammad Ali’

Neneh Cherry walks into our interview dressed exactly how you would imagine: hair piled up, bomber jacket, Adidas high tops and gold hooped earrings. The singer, 50 this year, has spent almost 30 years perfecting this look, and it’s now what you might call a street classic. “If it ain’t broke, right?” she says, with a shrug and one of her, quite frankly, gorgeous smiles.

Cherry is back with her first solo record for 17 years and a single, Spit Three Times, which is out this week. It’s a welcome return – in style as well as sound; ever since the early 80s, she has embraced the connections between the two. Her debut album, Raw Like Sushi, defined late 80s London. The cover features a 25-year-old Cherry wearing a defiant expression, dollar-sign earrings, stacks of gold bracelets, and on her hands the tape more usually used by boxers. It was cool, tough and, as the record title suggests, stripped-back. “I can’t say that it was a concept,” she says now. “It wasn’t like ‘We want to focus on this tough chick’. It was just what were doing – making something that mixes the street in.”

Despite no grand plan, this image – and others including her now-infamous pregnant appearance on Top of the Pops in 1988 – has become a touchstone for younger female artists negotiating the pressures of looking a certain way in the pop sphere. The spontaneity of its conception must appeal to a generation who have stylists’ moodboards planning their outfits years in advance. “It sort of amazes me,” she says, of her new status as style inspiration. “I have always felt like a bit of a ditz.”

A pregnant Neneh Cherry on Top of the Pops, 1988.

In fact, Cherry’s cool credentials are the stuff of legend. The stepdaughter of jazz musician Don Cherry, she lived between rural Sweden and New York as a child, hanging out with Allen Ginsberg in the Chelsea Hotel and sharing a loft building with Talking Heads. Her first job in London was stapling together issues of i-D magazine “with a girl called Scrubber”, and she hung out with Ari Up from The Slits on the punk scene, dying her hair red as a teenager. It was meeting stylists Judy Blame and Ray Petri in the mid-80s that crystallised the look for her burgeoning solo career. Cherry has worked with Blame for her entire working life, and credits the stylist and jewellery designer with her ability to “create fashion that’s anti-fashion. Putting a Gaultier thing next to cycling shorts from some shop in 14th Street”.

Petri, who died from complications due to Aids in 1989, was responsible for the Buffalo look in the pages of The Face: tough boys and girls from multicultural London wearing crisp graphic tailoring and street staples such as pork-pie hats photographed in still, almost classical portraits. Cherry embraced it, as the title of her biggest hit attests. “Ray was a true artist,” she says. “He had the insight and compulsion to draw out something that hadn’t been seen in fashion – the streets, who we are, all of our colours, all of our mixtures.”

This appealed to a young Cherry, growing up as a mixed-race child in Sweden. “I was incredibly conscious of being different, looking different,” she says. “That no one else had hair like me, or my skin colour.” This experience contrasted with the family’s regular trips to New York. “The States became somewhere I could spread my wings and really start to appreciate and absorb black culture,” she says, her voice a mishmash of Scandinavian, cockney and American. Fashion was part of that: “People would step out flexing their own style, taking whatever it is that they got and really making the most of it. I remember seeing this girl in a blue suit, with her hair all defined like it was an amazing cake.”

Fashion as a means of self-expression remains deep in Cherry’s bones. She says clothes, wherever they’re from, still need an edge of cool to appeal to her: “If it’s from the street or goes to the street, it always has to look cool.” Along with those bomber jackets and trademark high-tops, she regularly wears young London designer Christopher Shannon – “He’s my darling,” she says – Stella McCartney and Swedish avant garde label Ann-Sofie Back, and, as always, looks every inch herself. The formula certainly ain’t broke yet. Here are seven ways that show Cherry’s style in full effect.

1981

Ready to rebel: in a squat at Ladbroke Grove, London.
Photograph: David Corio/Redferns

This was when I first moved to London. I used to wear head ties at lot. I first visited when I was 14 and stayed with some punk friends of my mother’s. I remember being completely fascinated by what was happening here. I was ready to rebel.

1984

The New York vibe.
Photograph: Ray Stevenson/REX/Ray Stevenson/REX

When I came to England and I was spending a lot of time going to sound systems, the crown or the hat was the strong piece. Those bracelets are like the ones from New York, that kind of vibe.

1989

‘The female Muhammad Ali’: on the cover of the album Raw Like Sushi.
Photograph: Internet

Jean-Baptiste Mondino [who shot the picture] had been to my house and saw me breastfeeding and we did the picture like that. Ray Petri used to say I looked like the female Muhammad Ali.

1988

Cherry, seven months pregnant.
Photograph: ANDREW CATLIN-LONDON FEATURES

People still talk about the Top of the Pops thing. It wasn’t planned, there was no scheme, there was just no changing it: I was about seven months pregnant. Judy just got some stretchy stuff and I wore that. This jacket is by Mark Lawrence, a new designer coming up out of Central Saint Martins.

1989

Cheap and cheerful: The dollar bodysuit.
Photograph: Mick Hutson/Redferns

This was from Patricia Field’s shop in New York – it’s not by her, it’s by some drag-queen designer. I think we ran out of money, spending it on baby clothes, so needed something cheap and cheerful. Those are $7 earrings.

2004

A decade on, Cherry still owns this top.
Photograph: J F MARTIN/REX/J F MARTIN/REX

This is a bit more girly but I’m sure I’m still wearing it with trainers. I’m not sure what that top is, but I still have it. I’ve tried to get better at keeping the things that have emotional value, that I can pull back out.

2008

A flea-market find in Sweden, where Cherry lived as a child.
Photograph: Sipa Press/REX/Sipa Press/REX

This is my weird 60s cocktail dress. I should be on a patio with some green olives. I bought it at a flea market in Sweden with my mum. I was really hungover. I tried it and it fit like it was made for me.

2014

Stella on loan: Cherry attends the Stella McCartney show during Paris fashion week womenswear S/S 2015
Photograph: Pierre Suu/Getty Images

I was playing at Stella McCartney’s after party and my daughter Mabel had never been a fashion show, so we got the early train. I was wearing a Stella McCartney knitted jumpsuit, Judy Blame necklace and Stan Smiths. I had all these amazing Stella McCartney clothes on loan. I’m still mourning sending them back.

Article source: http://www.theguardian.com/fashion/2014/nov/11/neneh-cherry-street-style-hits-pictures-look

The Sartorialist Scott Schuman on all things street fashion

It’s often said that style is simply about being yourself. It’s probably this that the New York-based blogger Scott Schuman wanted to showcase when he decided to launch The Sartorialist in 2005, a photo blog that effectively showcases street fashion. In nine years, the photo blog — which started at a time when blogs depicting street style were still a rarity — has not only earned a mammoth following of the fashion flock, but has also opened a medium of style coverage that is more real in its approach. On his recent visit to the city for a talk organised by Elle India, he reveals what prompted his foray into street style photography, his plans for the blog’s 10th anniversary, and more.

How’s your trip to India been?
India is really beautiful, and I’m getting to see a lot of places. I started with Delhi, then Jaipur, and now Mumbai. I was supposed to leave for Udaipur and then Benares immediately, but I guess I am going to change my plan and stay longer in Mumbai.

Coming to your blog, what prompted you to start it?
It was just something I wanted to do for fun. I didn’t know that it’ll become a big thing. I didn’t have a business plan in mind. And because there was no pressure, I knew I could have fun with it and do what I wanted to do. I guess that’s why it felt fresh and different, and took off.

Did you face any initial roadblocks or get into trouble while shooting strangers on streets?
I never got into trouble in that regard, but I faced some roadblocks in the sense that I was doing this for the first time. Initially, it wasn’t easy getting people to see the beauty of the work I do. It required a lot of talking. When I went to a fashion week for the first time, I had to make people understand what a blog is. So, I went through all of that.

Why do you think street style photography has become a big thing now?
It clicked because people want to see style by real people. Earlier, for anything on fashion, people depended on fashion magazines and model images. Street style blogs really help because they add reality to fashion. They don’t have models, they have real people. Also, now, it’s become so much more diverse. There are blogs in different countries that showcase what the fashion is like in a particular city or town.

But, don’t you feel that this has led to the problem of plenty with several blogs looking like clones of one another?
This situation is like coffee. There are several coffee stores, but there’s only one that is really famous. There might be a lot of imitators, but that doesn’t affect me. I really like going out and taking pictures. And people still like them.

http://www.decade-sense.com/wp-content/plugins/rss-poster/cache/6a289_1211cafepg6a.jpg

Where do you think street style photography will be, say, in five years from now?
It’ll be the same. It doesn’t need to evolve. The only thing it needs is to continue to find new ways to shoot and capture reality. Street style doesn’t have to change, but it’s the edit that has to change. I have started shooting more interior and travel stuff now. So, I feel that’s what makes my photographs different — the mix of photographs.

What do you see in a person when you decide to click him or her?
It’s always different from person to person. It’s the people, their gestures, the colours they are wearing, etc. I don’t try to intellectualise it. I just react instinctively.

Which city is the most stylish, according to you?
I love Milan and Florence. In fact, I like all of Italy.

Has the street style of any city surprised you?
I’m very curious about Mumbai. I saw some potential here.

10 Do you have any expansion plans for your blog?
Not really. I just want to continue posting variety. Also, I’m doing a lot more on Instagram. This has really changed things in the sense that I’m shooting a lot more with my phone, and sharing things instantly.

11 What else is on your plate for the coming year?
My next book, after The Sartorialist and The Sartorialist: Closer, comes out next year. It’s a big thing for me because next year will be the 10th anniversary of my blog. The book will be like my first two books with images from the past three-four years, but this one will be a lot more diverse in terms of the places I’ve shot in. Also, it’ll have around 50% of cultural shots and 50% fashion shots.

Article source: http://www.hindustantimes.com/lifestyle/fashion/the-sartorialist-scott-schuman-on-all-things-street-fashion/article1-1285269.aspx

Hippie-hearted meets street-smart

Lifestyle Feature ( MRec ) – 2, pagematch: 1, sectionmatch:

Article source: http://www.philstar.com/fashion-and-beauty/2014/11/12/1390628/hippie-hearted-meets-street-smart

Cocktail of high-street fashion

For news details visit : http://nation.com.pk/sunday-plus/02-Nov-2014/cocktail-of-high-street-fashion

For news details Read on : Cocktail of high-street fashion

Sumbal Hammad , the Creative Director of The House of Aphrodite is the mother of four who was raised in Australia. A well-travelled and enterprising businesswoman, Ms. Hammad sought to introduce premium western wear to her homeland; a womens wear category which she determined was currently underserved in Pakistan. She strongly believes that The House Aphrodite truly encapsulates a shopping experience born out of passion and the love for fashion.

The brand offers trendy and chic western wear for women catering to the retail needs of young and mature women alike and features an extensive range product line consisting of tops, blazers, dresses, jeans, dress pants, vests, coats, jeans, jeggings, lingerie, sleepwear and accessories such as shoes, handbags and jewellery.

Located in Gulberg III, the premium fashion brand also caters to niche women’s wear consumers with select merchandise from some of the leading global designer labels including Karen Millen, French Connection, Gap, Zara, Top Shop, River Island, Wallis, Jane Norman, H M and Debenhams while also introducing the European inspired and sourced brand Aphrodite.

In an interview with Sunday Plus, Sumbal Hammad shares the brand philosophy and her working style. Here are the excerpts of the interview:

 

How did you get into fashion? Was there anyone in your family who made you feel like designing? 

I feel passion for fashion has been in my family since many years. My sister was a model in the USA and she was the one who ignited my fashion style and taste. The main reason I decided to start The House of Aphrodite was it beautifully blended in with my lifestyle of travelling and shopping abroad.

 Who do you think the market is for The House of Aphrodite? Did that align with your initial vision of the brand? 

The market for The House of Aphrodite is the fashion conscious stylist. The woman who wants to look good and balance her wardrobe with trends and classic style.  This is the basis on which I have built my brand and what determines my choice of merchandise.

 How is your personal style reflected in your brand?

I believe in a balanced and versatile wardrobe. I love trends but prefer to build my wardrobe on classic styles. Pieces that won’t be tossed out next season. I also feel every girl should have at least a few pieces that can be dressed up or down according to the occasion. For example a nice pair of linen pants can be teamed with a well tailored blazer for a formal look or a simple camisole or t-shirt for a more casual occasion. This is how I construct my wardrobe and is also the same way in which I am building my brand.

How would you describe your brand?

My brand is a cocktail of European high-street and exclusive boutique fashion. Classic styles laced with current trends.

 How much involvement do you have in the actual selection process?

I am the selection process. I travel frequently to Europe to source and purchase the merchandise. All the merchandise is handpicked with much love and thought by myself.

 What should a brand do before entering the market? Any particular tsteps they should take?     

It’s very important to establish a good understanding of customer demand and to thoroughly research your product.

 What did you see lacking in the market that you believed The House of Aphrodite could fulfill?

I felt there was a need for a wider range of womenswear products and accessories that were up to date, yet affordable. Women in Lahore have great taste but often find it difficult to shop here.

 In such a competitive industry how would you ensure that you would always be in demand?

Our products and customer service will do the assuring for us. 

 How do you balance creativity with commerce?

By creating a fashion collection which is in demand, introducing new and unique boutique styles and making them affordable.

 Do you have a specific research process when you select a new collection?

I keep my eye on the global fashion scene and choose items which. I believe are suitable for our market. I like to research and source the best quality and prices to give my customers the most value.

 What are the unique challenges you face as your role as creative director?

I wouldn’t say any of the challenges are unique but it is a juggling act. Being mom and businesswoman takes a lot of energy, especially with all the travelling involved. The research process involved is quite lengthy and the greatest challenge is to convince distributors to supply such a small amount per design. The Lahori fashion scene is closely-knit and no one wants to be wearing the same as anyone else. It takes a lot of negotiating and convincing with my distributors to buy in such small amounts. 

 Your house stores high street fashion with international brands. So what is your core strategy for stocking other brands?

I believe fashion is not one-dimensional, wearing designer brands or known brands is not the only way you to look good. I believe in balancing a variety brands to complete any look, casual or formal. This is why; I aspire to offer an affordable and stylish collection.

 In your view, how much role can marketing play in the promotion of a brand?

Marketing is a very important tool. It is the language that communicates demand and supply. No matter how good your product is, if the consumer does not know about it, it is of no use.

 What are your general professional and non-professional interests?

By profession I am a teacher and have also done a course in weight loss management.

My non-professional interests are cooking, travelling and shopping.

The latter two I have assimilated into a business interest.

 Who inspires you the most in fashion? Anyone who stands out?

From the classic beauties, Sophia Loren, Audrey Hepburn and the iconic designer Coco Chanel. From the modern times; Princess Diana and Natalie Portman.

 What would you say your greatest accomplishment is?

I am still working on it.

 What are some of your favorite websites, magazines or books?

Vogue and Elle

 What does a typical workday involve for you?

Sourcing merchandise, organizing new stock, monitoring the outlet and display, strategizing new marketing plans.

 What would be your dream creative project?

A café boutique

 What do you think your strongest skill is?

Creativity.

 

Article source: http://nation.com.pk/sunday-plus/02-Nov-2014/cocktail-of-high-street-fashion