Section: Inside Interview
Author: Fashion Team | More from this author >>>
This week, Fashion.ie’s Kevin O’Brien caught up with fashion designer Maria Rehmali and tells him why she has turned from from accountant to fashion designer with her work already showcased at London Fashion Week 2012 and due to hit the catwalk at New York Fashion week this September 2012.
Where were you born?
Where did you grow up?
I grew up in Birmingham (Married and living in Dublin)
What was your first job?
A Brand Associate in Hugo Boss
What got you interested in fashion?
From a very young age of 15, I was always known for my statement piece, whether it was a bag, jewellery, shoes etc, I was always complimented on my unique style so I decided to take a step into fashion industry and see if this is the right place for me. The fashion industry is a completely different world to me, a world with diversity, culture and individualism. This is where I wanted to be!. As a stylist in my early days (whilst at university studying for BA HONs in Accounting), my clients often told me to get into design as I knew the way craftsmanship was done in most garments. Showcasing was a distant memory as I had no connection with anyone in high fashion. In conversation to a friend I had learned she had diversified into fashion journalism, and was working with LGN Events (a company that showcase and promote emerging designer for LFW). I asked her the best way to showcase my own designs. A week later, I got a phone call to say that they would love to have me showcase my AW11/12. Obviously I was over the moon and got cracking on my first collection. My collection was the launch under the Rehmali brand
While growing up, did you have a favourite fashion designer who you admired?
To this day I still admire Giorgio Armani. He is a great legend in the fashion world and very inspiring
Where did you study fashion?
I didn’t study fashion. I have a degree in accountancy, that’s where my nickname comes from ‘Brain child of fashion’
Do you remember the first item you designed?
I designed my own personal Blazer Jacket at the age of 19, which I still have!
I remember wearing this and getting so many compliments with people asking me where I had bought it. When hearing that I had designed and created the blazer jacket, my friends and general public wanted it, which was great!!
Where do you get your design inspiration?
My influences come from my inspiration in everyday situations. Travelling across the global has a great input in my designs. Different cultures and ways of life, give me a great comfort in how my designs should balance and differ for a variety of women across the world. From colours to fabrics, global climate has a great impact on how a women feels, 'she should feel confident every time she enters and leaves a room', looking at current establish designers and read on the history of fashion also helps me to learn and push myself to create further iconic garments.
What item of clothing have you designed and thought, I don’t like that?
I had designed a dress, the fabric was a stain silk, midnight blue colour. The dress already had a layer embodied belt from the same fabric, but I knew it was not right!. I was not happy with the end result, so I decide to change the fall length of the gown into trousers and change it into a jumpsuit with added pockets. This was great as a had a lot of applause and recognition for my jumpsuit, even till this day J
How does having your own label differ from working for a large corporation?
Having my own Label reflects on myself, as an individual person. Consumers knowing and recognising your mark on the garments really show your craftsmanship and passion.
How did you start designing your own collection?
When designing your own collection there needs to be a theme which incorporates into the lifestyle of Rehmali. Rehmali is all about structure. This is the vision I have for my brand which I always base my collection around. Putting pencil to paper is a way of relaxing for me and I let my imagination with experiences, culture, trends and travel take control of my design to create my illustrations.
If you could design a piece of clothing for any celebrity who would it be and what would you like to design for them?
Sophia Loren .She is all about a women with her feminine curves and class of a lady. she is a great represent of a Rehmali women. Also Olivia Permlo is a great style icon for the modern age as she mixes up high streets with high end fashion. Her wear of garments is so effortless but yet very striking
What is the best perk in being a designer?
My craftsmanship being recognised. This is with any designer having a vision and creating for the consumers to love and appreciate.
What’s your favourite piece of clothing you have designed?
All my designs are very much close to me. I don’t have a favourite as they all have a unique purpose.
What are your own favourite types of clothes & colours that you like to wear yourself?
I love to experiment with every colour and fabrics. My own staple piece is a Blazer jacket, you will see this in every collection I do. Blazer Jackets are an essential in every wardrobe and really add character to any outfit.
Are there other designers out there who inspires you, explain?
Elie Saab is a flawless designer with his effortless, wearable gowns. I think he is an amazing with his designs and the fabrics he uses in his collection.
So what can we expect to see from Maria Rehmali for the future?
I have a brand to build to make it known worldwide. I will be showcasing again at LFW and hopefully at New York Fashion Week in September 2012. I’m also starting a collection in “Ready to Wear” for my viewers online.
In your opinion, what does it take to become a good fashion designer?
Dedication, self-discipline, passion and a love for fashion.
Where can the public buy your clothing items?
My items will be stock listed in London Boutiques from June 2012.
Do you have a website where people can view your fashion range?
My Website is under construction at the moment at www.rehmali.com. I also have a Facebook page @Rehmali and also Twitter @_Rehmali_
Author: Fashion Team | More from this author >>>