Monday 26 April 2010

Insight into the fashion industry - the stylist

If you fancy yourself a career in fashion, your first two thoughts might be "designer" and "model" but a whole lot more goes into the catwalk shows and gorgeous editorials that you see in the magazines. Unless you count writing this blog, I haven't worked in the fashion industry and like anyone else I love getting a behind-the-scenes look at what goes on. So when freelance stylist Nasima Ahmed got in touch with me I had plenty of questions for her about her job!

what are the main skills involved in doing your job (other than a good eye for fashion!)
Being able to understand what the client wants, being able to create something from scratch is always a good advtange, sometimes clients want one off pieces that no one else will have and it helps to have the skill to know how to quickly make something. Being able to work with different types of creative people is important, a lot of times you might have clashing opinions on things and its always important to know when to draw the line.

Describe an average working day
Depending on the project, if I am given a brief from a client I will spend a couple of days prepping the idea, giving feedback, sourcing props and specific bits for the shoot/ event. Then on the shoot its pretty much working with the creative team to get the achieved look!

what's the most enjoyable part about your job?
Not knowing where I’m going to be next, doing freelance styling means that I'm flexible to move around to new and exciting places and it also means I get to meet all types of people. Last week I did a talk on styling to fashion students on a fashion course, the week before I was shooting on the streets of East London and the shoot before I was shooting in a national park! The possibilities are endless! There are different parts to styling, there’s commercial styling which is more advertising which is really great fun, then there’s editorial which is more creative, personal styling with individuals, there’s so many different areas that I work with that I'm blessed to work in all areas.

what's the most challenging aspect?
Hmm maybe the long working hours, some shoots can start really early and last up 15 hours depending on how intense it is or if the client is not happy with the results you need to keep going till it is!

do you have any tips for all the budding stylists out there on how to get started?
Get work experience with a fashion stylist, do internship with a magazine, possibly do a fashion or styling course.

All images are from the "garden of eastern" shoot which Nasima styled, these appeared in Asian Woman Magazine and were a collaboration with FK Creatives. If you want to get in touch with Nasima, visit her website

Friday 23 April 2010

Saris at Wills Indian Fashion Week 2010

Wills Indian Fashion Week took place at the end of March this year and featured a range of India's top designers showcasing their creations. There was so much on show, from the special guest bollywood actresses on the catwalk, to the weird and wonderful outfits themselves. You can find photos from all the shows at and here are some stand-out saris:

These two print-saris above are from the Mynah by Renu Tandon collection, now we've all seen black and white print saris, but it's the houndstooth blouse print that really makes these stand out for me, and then in the black it's paired with a zebra-print-esque bordered sari. This combination really shouldn't work, but it doesn't look hideous and I think both of these outfits are very interesting!

Sari by Pallavi Mohan

Sari by Joy Mitra

I love the metallic look to this sari by Puja Arya

This sari by Gaurav Gupta is without a doubt my favourite, the whole look is just so chic, although perhaps a bit over the top with all the arm/shoulder detailing? I wonder how the sari is pinned to the models arm so it's almost like a floaty sleeve...if someone can enlighten me as to how this is styled I'd love to know!

Tuesday 20 April 2010

Key trend - jumpsuits as seen at The Asian Mela

Now I know this isn't strictly asian fashion, but when I saw these on the catwalk at the B4U Lycamobile Asian Mela 2010 I couldn't resist doing a quick blog post about them!

I'm guessing this part of the show was to promote the accessories rather than the outfits, but I thought these jumpsuits looked fab. I have no idea where they're from, but if you like the look of this trend and you're after one for yourself, I've found a few high street stores which have them in stock:

French Connection:

Ted Baker:

Red Herring @ Debenhams:

Friday 16 April 2010

Gul's Style Collection (part 2) at the B4U Asian Mela 2010

The second part of Gul's Style fashion show at the B4U Asian Mela had less of a bridal feel to it and the outfits seemed more partywear/eveningwear. If you missed the first part of their catwalk show click here to view.

What do you think of these jacket-type suits worn with trousers or capri pants? They do have a certain elegance about them, but personally I find them a bit too "heavy" looking, with long sleeves and the much long tops, they just don't seem very spring/summery to me. I do love the colours and fabric choice of these last two though.

Wednesday 14 April 2010

Jaan part two at the B4U Asian Mela 2010

Jaan had a second slot on the catwalk at the B4U Asian Mela 2010, in contrast to the more traditional and hijab outfits which they showcased in their first show, they went for more western-style dresses and lehngas, with off-the-shoulder tops and sleeveless designs.

My favourites were these two outfits with the corset-style tops, the colours really stood out to me.

Tuesday 13 April 2010

RDC at the 2010 B4U Asian Mela

East London based RDC displayed their collection of asian bridalwear at the 2010 B4U Asian Mela. Their show was composed of full length gowns and skirt suits, most of which I think would be perfect for a registry.

Saturday 10 April 2010

Ekta Solanki at the ASIANA Bachelors Search Party - London 2010

Asiana Magazine is on the search for their 2010 top 50 Bachelors and are holding events in London, Birmingham and Manchester. The London event has already taken place, and as part of the entertainment they had a fashion show with designs by Ekta Solanki.
Here's some photos from the event, courtesy of

The collection was composed of these very pretty party/cocktail dresses, which are a vast difference to the fully embroidered asian bridalwear by Ekta Solanki which were on show at the Asiana Bridal Fashion Show. However judging by some of the slits in the sides of these, I think a lot of these dresses can be worn with a matching churidar pajama, but I think they look just as good as dresses and fitted in with the tone of the event.

Here's the designer herself (in the centre at the back) with all the models.

The next stop of the Bachelor search is Manchester on Saturday 17th April and then on to Birmingham on the Saturday 1st May. I'm still undecided about whether or not to attend the Manchester event, but if you're going there's a 50% chance I'll be there :) Visit for more event info.

Friday 9 April 2010

Jaan at the B4U Asian Mela 2010

Another one of the exhibitors at the B4U Asian Mela was Jaan. A regular advertiser in Asiana Magazine, some of their recent editorials have featured bridal and partywear outfits with a hijab as part of the design.

They decided to showcase their hijab designs further by putting them on the catwalk at the B4U show:

Green and purple was the colour theme for the rest of their fashion show:

The Jaan website looks like it hasn't been updated in the last decade, and they don't seem to have a presence on facebook or twitter. I'd love to know, what do you think of this shop and their collection? leave a comment :)

Wednesday 7 April 2010

Gul's Style Collection (part 1) at the B4U Asian Mela 2010

I was really looking forward to attending the B4U Asian Mela, which took place in London over the bank holiday weekend...but I got struck down with flu and had to give it a miss :( I'm feeling much better now though and have found some photos from the fashion show which I can share with you. Credits for the photos go to Alisha Mohamed.

Did anyone attend this event? Was it busy? and more importantly did you enjoy it? Leave a comment and let us know!

Here's the first part of the collection by Gul's Style:

I like the idea of this dress, but think they went a little too over the top with the skirt. I think it would have looked so much better without the train. I loved the touch of red in the bouquet!

The rest of their collection were your more traditional asian outfits, as opposed to the east-west combination wedding gowns that they started off with.

I'll be posting the rest from Gul's Style later on this week, as well as catwalk photos from Jaan at Punjaab Textiles, RDC, and Ziggi Studio.

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