Where do you get most of your inspiration?
It really does vary, sometimes it’s an emotion, other times an artist. Some of it stemmed from my mother’s vintage wardrobe or what I distinctively remember her wearing when I was growing up. The autumn-winter collection was inspired by defined lines – triangles. The power of 3 comes across a lot throughout the entire collection. Sharp, metallic and striking.
What prompted you to start your own fashion label?
Ever since I was 20, I used to design my own eveningwear based on the lack of evening dresses that suited my liking. I wanted them to flow effortlessly, and I wanted them to accentuate my assets and hide my wobbly bits. That was a challenge and the prices of the gowns I did find were extortionate. After a few years, many would ask where I bought my dresses from, and when I said I designed them they asked if I could help them design and oversee one of their own. This extended to my family and friends. 10 years later, I decided to give this fashion thing a go, and here I am!
Describe the person you are designing for?
She’s urban, a city girl, has a full time schedule, doesn’t stare at the mirror for too long, wants things to fit without having to starve before she wears the outfit. She’s always on the go, and effortlessly elegant. She doesn’t wear too much makeup, and believes that simplicity does stand out. She likes the dress to speak for her.
Which celebrity would you love to see wearing your designs?
They’ve become a few. Julia Roberts, Kate Winslet, Christina Hendricks. These actresses feel real both on and off screen.
What has been the high point of your fashion career so far?
Calls and e-mails from women who wore pieces from my collection, who’ve told me stories that boosted their confidence, made them feel beautiful, and e-mails asking when the next collection will be released! Recently I received a call from a lady who called me to say that thanks to 3 of my dresses for her sister’s wedding occasions, she felt wonderful, comfortable, and she stood out of the crowd.
Where do you see your designs in 5 years’ time?
I see them in various department stores around the world I hope. I see the collections evolving by slowly adding new types of garments into the mix as the collections go by.
What are looking forward to most about LFW?
Wow, the experience to start off with. London is my favourite city in the world, literally. I spent my summers there since I was 3, and it’s now become my city for fashion, friends, inspiration, and relaxation.
Being with other peers who, like me, are up and coming, I’ll learn a lot from that. Meeting interesting people and seeing the value of brand Dima Ayad in the global spectrum of fashion, where I need to improve, and what it’s going to take to get there will such an eye opener.
And, that there will be one (or many) buyers in that audience thinking, “We like Dima Ayad.”
What advice would you give to other aspiring independent designers?
You’ve chosen a challenging yet utterly rewarding industry to be a part of. Don’t give up no matter what! If you believe in it, it will happen!!!!
Coming from a background that is not fashion-oriented, at first your confidence isn’t the greatest since other fashion designers have studied draping, mastered drawing, and lived and breathed this industry. Yet still, believing is seeing results of your hard work.
Dima Ayad's latest collection can be seen at the Charing Cross Hotel on Saturday 19th February 2011 as part of LGN Events' off schedule show - A La Mode
Press and buyers wishing to attend should contact firstname.lastname@example.org