1. Tell us something about your career as a fashion designer that people do not know about?
When I started my career I had no idea what direction it would take. I started small and put out a capsule collection of cuts, and designs I loved. They were understated with very little embellishment. It was many years ago when very few people in Lahore where making such clothes. People loved it! From that collection every year there was progression and I realized that there was a need for this aesthetic. I stuck to what I believed in and what I loved to do. SUBLIME became a label synonymous with minimalism.
2. You are an inspiration for Pakistani Women. How do you feel about this?I hope that I can inspire women in our part of the world that a working woman can be a mother, run a home and fulfill all the roles successfully. There is respect, recognition and a great sense of achievement in being able to do so. Women are great at multi tasking and are capable of achieving great things. I am so proud of the fact that we are able to through our work employ and help so many families out there, in our country there is a great need for this. If you are in a position to inspire it is your responsibility to do so much more through your work. Being socially responsible is key!
3. What motivated you to come into the fashion industry and become a fashion designer?
I think it was a natural calling; I was always inclined towards this field. After finishing my education in London in Fashion design and Marketing I returned to Pakistan and found that they were endless opportunities and I took what I learnt and my personal aesthetic and put out my first collection and since then there has been no looking back.
4. Why did you name your label “Sublime”?
I have always loved the concept of a higher beauty, grandeur heavenly something out of the ordinary. I love the word Sublime and felt that this is what I always wanted to do. Something SUBLIME!
5. You stock your fashion label Sublime at various places, how do you manage production and stocking and maintaining your own outlet?
It’s a tough job and initially I had a smaller set up we have had to grow with time and expansion. It has been difficult to manage due to logistical issues too and I am in the process of re organizing my production capacity. There is no point in stocking in ten different place if you are doing it half heartedly so I would rather stock at fewer places but give the clients an entire range.
6. Do you work alone on creating an ensemble, from selecting fabrics to creating designs?
Yes that can be viewed as a good thing or perhaps not so good at times, I have to put myself self into the collection entirely and do like to control the design aspect. Sometimes a team’s input can also prove beneficial but I am gradually getting there at the moment it is all being managed by me.
7. You maintain a balance and run your business efficiently; do you have a mentor who you always seek guidance from?
I started Sublime alone and pretty much made decisions along the way that I felt right. I have always tried to be rational, fare and followed my heart and thank fully things have turned out alright. My parents are great at giving me direction in terms of life, home and work; they have been great support and keep giving me perspective.
8. How do you feel when you see someone wearing your designs?
It’s always a great feeling!
9. How do you see the Pakistan fashion industry in years ahead?
I feel that the industry has grown rapidly in the last couple of years if we continue at this rate we can achieve a lot more in terms of fashion becoming a serious business. There has been a change in the industry where designers have started to put out collection seasonally; there is a move towards ready to wear, better quality clothing, and more availability. More and more designers are beginning to stock internationally; there is a general shift in the market and a lot more professionalism.
10. What role do fashion weeks in Pakistan play in taking the fashion industry forward?
I have been showing at all the PFDC Sunsilk fashion weeks so far and have felt that we are given a great platform to show our work seasonally. Each time it is getting bigger and better. The focus is shifting to the business of fashion. It promotes new and old designers on an equal platform, creates a healthy competition in which we get a better quality of work. It has also given designers a discipline which was very necessary to make this industry grow into a professional serious business.
11. Five things people do not know about Sara Shahid?
I am a dreamer….
I love music
I am a bit of a control freak
I think too much!
I always tend to believe that there is good in everyone
12. Most adventurous experience you have ever had?
Not a very adventurous person …. But have had mini adventures often!
13. What are your future plans for your label?
Lots ahead but as I have always done, is consolidate and move a step at a time. In my mind I have many plans for my label but the future is not in my control I just pray for more success for SUBLIME!
14. What do you think sets Sublime’s design aesthetic and signature style from other labels?
Sublime is a label that has always been known for its less is more design philosophy. The label is known for its cuts and its understated glamour. With each collection I put out my inspiration and a message so it’s not just about the clothes it is about a Sublime lifestyle!
15. Three things that make you proud about the Pakistan Fashion Industry and Pakistani designers?
I am proud to be a part of this industry; it has given us so much. We are what we are because of this country. Contrary to what people may think there is a great deal of camaraderie amongst our group of designers, we do help each other out and I do believe that there is room for all!
16. Any advice you would like to give to the Pakistani youth?
Live and let live! Be true to yourself and anything you choose to do, do it with a passion and believe in it.