In Conversation With Lahore-Based Designer Rameen Raza

We speak to this young Lahore-based designer Rameen Raza about her namesake fashion label. 

Tell us a little about yourself and your journey as a fashion designer.

As a young girl, I was always interested in the field of fashion. I would often design clothes for my friends and family, but only as a hobby, nothing more.  After completing my A-Levels in Design & Textile, I wanted to turn my hobby into something substantial and hence came my brand into existence. I turned my passion for clothes and designing into my job and Alhamdullilah, it has been a great journey so far.

How did you enter into this field? Was it always the dream?

I am a fashion enthusiast. My interest and passion helped develop my sense of style. It all started with me creating clothes for close family and friends who further boosted my confidence in my brand and I started to display my work for the world to now enjoy.

Where do you look for creative inspiration?

Every year lawn is something every individual wears as a norm in the summer. The lack of diversity among people inspired me to want to create something unique for the public. The hues of summer and spring combined with the birth of a new life in our garden led me to create my signature floral embroidered kurtas on ever classic chicken cloth.

What sets you apart from your competitors?

Every brand is unique in their own way.  I feel what sets me apart is the fact that I keep my designs minimalistic for the everyday women. Personalization at its heart, every piece I create is a part of my blood, sweat and love.

According to you, how has COVID-19 affected the fashion industry and your brand specially?

With more people now staying at home and keeping gatherings to a limited number I feel the fashion industry is drastically going to change. People are looking for more simplicity than extravagance in clothing. My collection focuses on ‘less is more’ and despite all the drawbacks that Covid-19 has brought, it led me to utilise my time and start up my brand. So far it has been a blessing in disguise as people are restricted to their homes and focusing more on e-commerce for their purchases.

What fashion trend would you personally love to see make a comeback in the Pakistani fashion industry?

I would like to see dabka and tila work dupattas being worn with plain, pastel colored shalwar kameez make a comeback, like our mothers used to wear back in the day. Clean lines and minimalistic design is what gives it that old school classic and regal look. I hope to include a few articles in my upcoming collection.

You design tons of easy-breezy summer kurtas. How do you overcome creative blocks? Is it hard to stay innovative?

Creative blocks are very real, especially in these times when going out seems like a far-fetched thought. It’s important for me to take a step back from sketching and visit the market to look for new material. Being in that environment really helps my creativity and helps me focus better. It’s imperative to stay true to yourself and the brand, and just work hard, rest will fall into place.

What is your favourite part about being a designer?

Satisfied customers. At the end of the day it all comes down to my customers. When they receive their orders and they give me feedback it just makes my day. I also love the thrill the end result of my ideas give me. When you’re working day and night to form an outfit on sketch it takes a lot out of the person and when that same idea turns into this beautiful kurta in reality it’s just a magical experience.

Any plans on expanding your brand?

Yes, I do plan on expanding my brand slowly. For now I’m working on a semi-formal collection for the upcoming winter season. This is just the beginning and I’m looking forward to the journey ahead.

What advice would you give to young designers?

From all the experience I’ve gained so far I think the advice I’d want to have been given to me as a young designer would be to believe in your brand. Staying true to yourself is always the best option. If someone likes your work then that’s amazing but if someone doesn’t, take it as a learning opportunity to work harder and transform the criticism into something beautiful.

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