“Fashion designing sounds alien to people in Kashmir”

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Mufti Sadia, 23, owner of ‘Hangers the Closet’ tells Saima Rashid that one doesn’t need any degree to become a fashion designer

Sadia

Mufti Sadia

Kashmir life (KL):  How to become a fashion designer?

Mufti Sadia (MS):  There is no procedure actually. I haven’t joined any institute to be a Fashion designer. All you need is to be creative about making designs. Degree or diploma in fashion designing hardly matters; even I have been a science student and recently I have completed my masters in International business from IGNOU.

KL:  What was your parent’s reaction when they got to know about your interest in fashion designing?

MS: My mother and my sisters were supportive but my father thought, I will be only wasting my time. It took me lot of time to convince my father. Our parents have basically restricted their thinking to medical and engineering fields only. Fashion designing sounds alien to people in Kashmir.

KL:  How to make a career in fashion designing?

MS: One should be creative enough to make designs. The familiarity with fabric usage and fabric type is needed. And most importantly there are some Do’s and Don’ts which one should follow. One should be outspoken and confident to convince customer to buy his/her designs. Over confidence is bad. Rather be down to earth. Do not overdo your designs that will lead to confusion. In a nutshell be simple, be different. And yeah use any kind of fabric.

KL: How difficult was it to open a store in Kashmir?

MS: Always start from the scratch. First I concentrated on designs that were comfortable for Kashmiri consumers. Then I started using Pakistani fabric for my designs because Kashmiri girls are crazy about Pakistani outfits. I rented a low budget shop in Lal chowk to check out the exposure. And then the journey started.

KL: What is the scope of fashion designing in a place like Kashmir?

MS: Usage of designer clothes is growing in Kashmir but at a slow pace. I would say it is very hard to convince an ordinary Kashmiri lady to buy your designs. A normal outfit costs very less than a designed one, because we have to use bulky and expensive fabric to make such designs. In Kashmir, products are purchased on quantitative grounds rather than qualitative. So it becomes very hard to switch customer’s mind to qualitative world.

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