26 Feb #tbt to when I launched my first collection…
Not to make this post suuuupperr long, but here’s a condensed version of the facts and steps on how I decided to become a fashion designer. Back in 2008, I graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Modern Languages & Linguistics. I was excited to be part of the adult world, as I knew exactly what I wanted to do…and that meant translation (at the time). A year into the work field, I was like that’s it, this is not me! this is impossible! I’m unhappy….and then flash forward to when I figured fashion design is the way to go.
Getting into fashion was the best decision I ever made at 21. I knew then and there that life is all set for me. It took me 13 months of intensive work, blood (literally), tears, amazing friendships and experiences to get me the diploma. With great distinction, I became the designer I knew I could be. I was young, hungry and extremely ambitious to get into the industry. I was eager to leave my mark despite the fact that everyone thought I was mad for getting into this field while wearing my veil. Don’t get me wrong, I never thought my veil would ever stop me from being awesome or kick ass and I never saw it or used it as a handicap. I always knew that I wanted to be a girl boss and let me tell you (very humbly) that I did that and so much more. I managed to launch 3 lines on my own and get contracts and even start my own online shop…
So today, I am sharing with all of you my experience as a fashion designer. I launched my first line in 2013 as a tribute to my voyage to Morocco, the land of Saharan beauty <3
It was crazy, surreal, exciting, humbling, scary, chaotic, and the list goes on. I will never forget the adrenaline I felt backstage, watching the girls parade my dresses with poise and finesse (Gosh they were all super sweet and adorable!!!). I felt like a proud mama, letting her babies go off into the world on their own.
I never in my mind have imagined to be there, backstage at Ottawa Fashion Week. It was so surreal that the next day I got sick; literally and psychically sick. I was beyond words. Everyone who ever shut me down and told me to not even think about designing was wrong and I made it. It was a moment of glory and pride for me and for my family. I want to thank everyone who didn’t believe in me, because if it wasn’t for them, I would never have had the guts, the power, nor the energy to push and achieve.
So here are some of my pieces:
To design is a beautiful art, but it’s a tough art. It’s very demanding in a fulfilling way. Long hours go into making garments. From the pattern, to the fitting, to the adjusting, to the sewing and to the very last detail put on the last minute backstage..everything counts and everything makes a difference. There is no room for error and no time to waste. Let me tell you that I didn’t truly believe in myself until the next day, when I saw the reviews. They were positive, constructive and just very touching. I cried, and cried hard. Knowing that I actually made a dream come into a reality gave me the necessary push to keep fighting.
From that moment on, I vowed to believe in myself and do everything I wanted to do. Anything that scares me, I do it! Anything anyone tells me I can’t do, I do it! Ain’t no time to waste!!! Life is too short to sit and wallow. We must always have the courage to fight for what we believe in and follow our dreams. I was very hard on myself growing up, always told myself I wasn’t good enough, always pushed myself to the limit. But now, I have come to an age where I can say, good job Iman! I achieved a lot and I am proud of every effort, every step and every mistake I took to get to where I am today. I am fierce, I am powerful, I am limitless and I am woman. I guess what I am trying to tell everyone out there with a dream is; go for it!! Do not let anyone put you down. And the negativity, use it, take it in, turn it into fuel to keep pushing yourself to another limit and to another level. Never be afraid to make mistakes, as they are part of the beautiful process and journey to achieve personal greatness and to reach your goals.
Keep shining peeps and be who you are meant to be, fully and apologetically.