28 episodes

Hi there! Dubai Fashion News is the new podcast where you can get to know everything about the fashion industry. Here we will interview fashion designers, influencers, models, photographers, shop owners, you name it. And what for? To learn their insights, their stories and the lessons they learnt along the way.

Please susbcribe to the podcast to receive the latest news about the fashion industry and get to know the players in it.

DUBAI FASHION NEWS PODCAST FASHION

    • Fashion & Beauty

Hi there! Dubai Fashion News is the new podcast where you can get to know everything about the fashion industry. Here we will interview fashion designers, influencers, models, photographers, shop owners, you name it. And what for? To learn their insights, their stories and the lessons they learnt along the way.

Please susbcribe to the podcast to receive the latest news about the fashion industry and get to know the players in it.

    DFN PODCAST: MOHAMMED RABI FROM THE LETTER ON HOW TO DEAL WITH YOUR EMOTIONS WHEN YOU ARE STARTING YOUR FASHION BRAND

    DFN PODCAST: MOHAMMED RABI FROM THE LETTER ON HOW TO DEAL WITH YOUR EMOTIONS WHEN YOU ARE STARTING YOUR FASHION BRAND

    I enjoyed so much this podcast that I think you are going to love it too. Today we speak about the pretty and the ugly emotions you might face when starting your own brand. Mohammed Rabi, the designer, and entrepreneur behind the brand The Letter will share with us his journey and how he manages not only to stay afloat but also to thrive.

    ABOUT TODAY´S PODCAST

    Starting your business is not easy. It requires a lot of work and determination. Rejection, fear, frustration or even self-doubt hurts the entrepreneur. Much more if it is the creative brain behind the brand. We might even take it personally … At the end of the day, it is our baby and we are putting so much of ourselves in it. Mohammed Rabi is a successful designer opening up and sharing how he overcame all these emotions and kept his mind clear and focused to keep on working in his brand.

    ABOUT MOHAMMED RABI

    Mohammed is a reserved person, but once you start getting to know him, you see he has a really cool vision on life, work, family and also, success. Originally born and raised in Dubai, he studied Art Education in San Francisco. That, allowed him to venture and research into all sort of different ways of expression and creativity. Not only the traditional drawing and sculpture but also fashion and graphic design. Thanks to all the experimentation he found his passion and what he wanted to do.

    His California period was amazing. After the initial culture shock, Mohammed Rabi got to know the locals and embrace the freedom and the essence of the place. There is something about it, that is simply put, COOL. Being Mohammed a total movie and pop culture lover, his inspiration started with leather jackets. You can read about this here as we did an article about his brand.

    When it was time to come back to Dubai, he didn’t feel he would fit the 9 to 5 and started helping his sister with her bag business. That inspired him to actually start his own brand.

    LAUNCHING THE LETTER

    The Letter couldn’t have started any better. When they did launch the brand, sales started to come in immediately. It was something new and fresh in the market. It was a hit!

    But Mohammed was already two steps ahead wondering… “ok, So now… How do I keep this consistent?”. Retail is now at his lowest, but at that time it was not so. Diversifying was suggested. And so, he started creating t-shirts that complement his offering and started developing other types of jackets.

    He says it is better to start bit by bit and grow organically rather than his way. But one way or another you learn.

    MOHAMMED´S GOLDEN ADVICE



    * He learned that it is OK to say No to things. That, it is also Ok to have losses. It is part of the game and the blessing of being able to do trial and error and master your craft and your product.

    * Follow your gut.

    * Have a good support system. In his case his family.

    * Prioritize your time and your energy well.

    * Focus on the good things and the good people. Have the right mindset!

    * Try making progress every day, even if they are baby steps.

    * Have a good reason to do what you are doing.

    * Appreciate the process.

    * Embrace the struggle and my favorite…

    * STAY HUNGRY!



    SOMETHING WE DIDN’T KNOW ABOUT THE LETTER

    He produces his leather jackets in a very small factory in India. The workers there are super creative and skilled. They do the hand paintings over the jackets. Mohammed appreciates their talent very much and wants to keep on helping them by being loyal. “I found my other family here”.

    A jacket needs 4- 5 days to be produced without any artwork. If there is artwork involved it can take up to 10 days. There is a lot of love and dedication in every piece.

    Mohammed likes to play in his mind with different fictional characters and imagine what...

    • 49 min
    DFN PODCAST: HOW TO ORGANIZE A POPUP WITH MANAL WAQI

    DFN PODCAST: HOW TO ORGANIZE A POPUP WITH MANAL WAQI

    Manal Waqi is by now a seasoned Popup organizer. Today she is going to share with us all you need to know about how to organize a popup, what works, what doesn´t, how to come up with a concept and what the process is like.

    Hit Play to listen to Manal´s interview.

    ABOUT MANAL WAQI

    I met Manal a few years back as we started our editorial projects more or less at the same time. From the very beginning, I admired her determination and drive. She is always on the go. Her mind always thinking about what can be done next. And she is not alone… Her entire family is amazing and supports each other beautifully. Her online magazine is called The Amanqi Edit. You can check it out. I recommend it very much.

    The Amanqi Edit´s focus is writing about the creative minds in the region, sharing their stories, putting them out there to be seen. Eventually Manal wanted to assist further by creating sales opportunities for those same designers she was helping promote. And so, she started organizing the popups.

    HOW TO ORGANIZE A POPUP

    Of course, everyone might have a different approach but Manal Waqi shared with us how she does it and how it works for her.

    TIME IS OF THE ESSENCE

    Manal popups take around 6 weeks to get organized. The months that worked better for her so far have been March and December. All this came with experimentation. Initially, they were just looking for convenient dates until one of their popups clashed with an Art Fair. Eventually, they made it work having a partnership with them.

    Now she advises being more strategic, making sure there is not “too much” going on. Dubai is hectic and busy with many events, many of them being popups. Try to avoid saturated dates if possible.

    Manal always organizes the Popups from Thursday to Saturday. Three days are the magic number here. One day popups are not enough and month-long popups don’t have the sense of urgency and end up being forgotten.

    PROCESSES RUN IN PARALLEL

    In the case of Manal popups, there is not any particular order. All has to be done and it gets tweaked if needed along the development of the event. To have a successful popup you will need to have:



    * A good venue

    * Brands

    * A concept



    As they already have experience and have developed good relationships with some venues and designers, there are certain things that it is easier for them.

    The Venue

    Manal events are normally at the Culinary Boutique or at Society Cafe. Both in Jumeirah and really nice cafes with beautiful spaces and a cozy atmosphere. The popups of Manal are nicely decorated and don’t have booths or stalls that might stop the flow within the space. The idea is to make you feel like you are in a stylish boutique with easy access to everything and where you can mix and match clothes and accessories at leisure even if they belong to different brands.

    She has also done Popups in London and Geneva and is considering adding Paris to the list. Europe is very different but they are hungry for the new. Middle Eastern designers bring a very interesting and fresh approach to fashion that is very well received.

    Brands/ Designers

    Designers come to Manal interested in the next Popup or she selects some of the designers she knows already. But she is open to having newcomers. Please feel free to send her an email and show your interest.

    The Concept

    You can play with different themes but it is important that all is coherent with the designers and product offering. It has to be suitable for the brands as otherwise, they won’t be joining for other popups. Some concepts are easier to develop like The Jewelry PopUp or the Ramadan Popup. Others require more creative work.

    PROS AND CONS FOR DESIGNERS

    The only con might be the price but Manal tries to...

    • 35 min
    DFN PODCAST: ECOMMERCE WITH SIRISH KUMAR FROM TELR

    DFN PODCAST: ECOMMERCE WITH SIRISH KUMAR FROM TELR

    We can not understand fashion nowadays without the online democratization that e-commerce and social media is bringing to all. This podcast is a gold mine if you are starting an e-commerce, especially if you are in the MENA region. No matter if you are in the fashion sector or in fitness, consultancy, or construction. You need a website and if possible an eshop. There is a lot of questions when it comes to payment gateways to be able to take payments online. So, we got Sirish Kumar, CEO from Telr to answer all of them. Telr is one of the sponsors of the podcast and is offering to all the readers and listeners a very special promo code. Keep on reading and listening to the interview to get all the details.

    ABOUT OUR GUEST: SIRISH KUMAR

    I met Sirish at some event at In5 where we are incubated. We started talking and I saw in him a visionary. The kind of people that has a very defined vision, lots and lots of patience, knowledge and rare-to-find leadership skills.

    He started Telr after being CFO of Paypal, because there was a gap in the market that needed to be addressed. It was not easy but his laser focus on his clients and his wish to serve them the better he can, it is making a difference. Today Telr is one of the preferred online payment gateways. We use it for Goshopia.com and we can only complement the service we have received so far. Today Sirish shares with us some of his knowledge on e-commerce, and entrepreneurship.

    WHAT IS KEY WHEN SELECTING A PAYMENT GATEWAY FOR YOUR E-COMMERCE?

    Sirish advises checking these three main things when looking for the payment gateway. First, we should ask ourselves if we would want to use social media as an additional sales channel. Right now, social selling is getting bigger and bigger and it is possible to have a link that connects directly to the Telr checkout. This means expanding your reach to new levels.

    Second, is security. You shouldn’t underestimate the impact of fraud in any given business. It can damage not only your numbers but also your reputation. Online shopping is very much linked to trust. If your page is not trustworthy, you are doomed. Telr is offering one feature called 3D Secure. It basically requests a confirmation number sent as a message to the phone linked to the bank account. Without that confirmation, the transaction will not go through.

    The third key is innovation and keeping up to date. Plugins get updated and if linked to a payment gateway, it might give errors. Telr makes sure the integrations are seamless and updates constantly with the changes in partner plugins. Also, there are so many innovations when it comes to how to serve better your clients, that you need to have an eye for all that. Like the QR codes that allow for remote payments instead of cash on delivery.

    THE OFFER: OUR PROMO CODE WITH TELR

    The offer that Telr has for the readers and listeners, for the friends and family is fantastic. It is zero setup fees, zero monthly fees and only 2.5% per transaction. This rate applies to whatever transaction volume.

    If there are no transactions within the first three months, then a monthly fee of AED99 will be applied from month 4th onwards, for each month without transactions.

    This means huge savings for startups. So go ahead and use it, share it with your friends or friends of your friends. To avail it, it is very simple. You just have to go to their contact page here and send a message stating that you have the promo code FASHION. If you have any question related to the offer conditions or to related to any other thing that we can help you with ( we are good at Marketing, SEO, Social media, Content creation, Podcasting and Setting up a business in Dubai) please feel free to reach out. We are happy to help in whatever way we can. Our email is hello@dubaifashionnews.com.

    And now sit,

    • 42 min
    DFN PODCAST WITH ADELA ALONSO- EVERYTHING ABOUT FASHION BUYING.

    DFN PODCAST WITH ADELA ALONSO- EVERYTHING ABOUT FASHION BUYING.

    In today´s podcast, you are going to learn everything about fashion buying with the creative consultant Adela Alonso. She has tons of years of experience doing precisely that not only in the Middle East but also in Europe and Asia.

    If this is a career path you thought you would like to explore, don t miss all her tips and comments. She didn’t keep anything for herself. Listen to the podcast here!

    ABOUT ADELA ALONSO

    Initially, Adela studied fashion. She wanted to become a designer. When she started working, she realized she loved following up the whole process and so her interest in fashion buying increased. The jump was easy as she is very analytical, and she did it for many years in different continents. One year ago, she decided to start her own company in Dubai.

    She found that designers don’t get enough business training at fashion schools. And business people ready to invest in the industry have no idea what will work and what won’t as they don’t understand the nitty and gritty of the sector.

    Alonso & Alonso was born to bridge that gap and it is doing really well.



    ABOUT FASHION BUYING AND FASHION BUYERS

    Most of the designers want to know how to get their collections in front of the buyers. They seem to be hiding and to be difficult to reach. Today you are going to learn what they are needing and how to get through to them.

    Fashion buyers’ roles depend on the business model of the shops. Adela worked in Landmark and they have many brands and markets under their umbrella. They have teams of designers, buyers and factories and a very well-oiled work system. Other fashion buyers might be buying for multi-brand shops such as Debenhams, Galerie LaFayette, Bloomingdales, Robinsons or Harvey Nichols. In reality, designers and buyers need each other. You have to make sure that what you offer is right for the shop and their clients and send all the information they will need.

    Adela explained to us the trilogy between the fashion buyer, the merchandise planner and the designer. They have to work in total synchrony to make sure the items designed, and produced are desired and bought by the clients. How the different departments work together in order to achieve good margins and benefits for the company.

    If you are a designer, you might want to listen to the full interview to learn how to negotiate and leverage when dealing with factories among many other super juicy topics.

    Check all the great tips that Adela shared with us in the podcast.

    Play it here!

    THE WORLD OF RETAIL

    Buyers are required to know about trends and what is working and what not. Therefore, they normally visit the shops, read trend reports and watch the street style evolution.

    What do shops do when the items are not selling? If you have only one shop, you can put the items on sale and offer them discounted. Also, you can save them for later when the sales are on. Retail space is expensive, and you need to maximize it as much as you can.

    If you have more than one shop, you can see where those items have been selling better and send them to that shop using what is called Reverse Logistics. Zara is very efficient in doing this and has a very small ratio of items not being sold.

    If the items don’t get to be sold still, you can repurpose it by changing the color or adding some embellishment or something trendy.

    If you want to get in touch with Adela Alonso, don’t hesitate to send her an email to adela@alonso-alonso.com and check her website www.alonso-alonso.com.

    LIKED THIS PODCAST?

    Then for sure, you will also love our other podcasts!! Check some of our other episodes.

    DFN PODCAST: HOW TO BUILD YOUR FASHION ...

    • 59 min
    DFN PODCAST: UNCONVENTIONAL FASHION WITH WINDE RIENSTRA

    DFN PODCAST: UNCONVENTIONAL FASHION WITH WINDE RIENSTRA

    In today’s podcast, we interview Winde Rienstra. She is the mastermind behind some of the most daring shoe and clothing designs out there. You can see her pieces in museums and in celebrities like Lady Gaga or Selena Gomez. She uses cardboard, glass beads, wood, lego blocks, plastic… there are no limits to her creativity.

    With Winde Rienstra we are going to learn about her creative process, her personal and professional journey and how to live out of unconventional fashion. Click play and enjoy!

    Today we are starting the third season of our Dubai Fashion News Podcast and we are really excited because this interview is different. We admire very much the people that decide to change the status quo of things, that challenge what is accepted and reinvent their own rules. Great couturiers are now remembered thanks to that daring attitude. Winde is sweet, shy, very observant, but it is a creative powerhouse.



    ABOUT WINDE RIENSTRA

    Winde initially studied Arts to become a teacher to later realize that, in reality, she wanted to be a fashion designer. In love with art and architecture, she always managed to impress her teachers. Thanks to that, she went to Australia as an exchange student. She loved the freedom of that semester and one of her assignments got the eye of Australian Vogue and was featured. All this, even before she graduated.

    Regarded as a very promising star in the Netherlands, she immediately started producing fashion shows after finishing her studies. For three years, she prepared every single detail of the shows, and created absolutely everything that would go on stage. Not only the clothes but also the shoes, the bags and all sort of accessories.



    Now she doesn’t do this anymore. “It is a lot of work, for a 10-minute show. Great for publicity, but not necessarily for sales.” At that time in her life, she realized that her priority was to safeguard her creativity, even if that would mean having less money or less visibility. She remembers the energy of friends, family, and interns working together to produce a show, the adrenaline that comes with the applause, the fun…

    HER CREATIVE PROCESS

    She loves art, architecture, nature and the small things. That is why traveling is a great source of inspiration. Dubai and Oman are now part of that inspiration after this trip. Oh! Our desert did leave quite an impression on her memory.

    The designer doesn’t think of a particular person or muse when creating. She follows the material and what it can be done with it, using the moulage -draping directly the materials over the mannequin- instead of sketching.

    Food for thought: Excessive knowledge might hinder our creativity.



    HANDS ON!

    When it comes to the production, and due to all the different materials Winde uses, her studio was not enough. Sanding machines, laser cutters, 3d printers… are part of the utensils she needs to create her pieces. Her father is very good with his hands and helps her a lot in transferring her ideas into the real world. It is an amazing team. We could say that the family that creates together, stays together!

    WORKING WITH THE CELEBRITIES

    Most probably you will work with their stylists, not with the celebrities themselves. Celebrities help put her name out there and it is great to get more people knowing what she is doing. “If only we could work with some more time”, says Winde. “Normally they come with very little time in advance. And because everything needs to be custom made, sometimes we end up running”.

    Winde Rienstra has done already Opera-yep! the Madame Butterfly outfits. And she would love to be able to work on films. Taking into account her unique vision and talent, I am sure that is something to be happening very soon. I can see her dressing Khalessi and all the Star Wars cast!

    WHAT IS THE FUTURE OF FASHION?

    • 42 min
    DFN PODCAST WITH ALIA KHAN ABOUT MODEST FASHION AND HOW IFDC OPERATES

    DFN PODCAST WITH ALIA KHAN ABOUT MODEST FASHION AND HOW IFDC OPERATES

    Modest fashion is a trending topic not only in the region but everywhere. Today we will speak about modest fashion with Alia Khan, president, and founder of IFDC which stands for Islamic Fashion & Design Council. She is also going to share her journey creating the council and how they are helping designers and other industry players succeed.

    Have a listen to the interview here.

    ABOUT ALIA KHAN

    Originally from Pakistan, Alia Khan grew up in California. She moved to Dubai in 2005 to be closer to her family. At that time, she had a media company that created content for huge companies like Procter & Gamble. You can tell she knows how to express her thoughts and ideas when listening to her in the interview!

    Eventually, she realized there was a huge demand and an even bigger gap in modest fashion and Islamic design. That is how the idea of a starting at fashion and design council came to life.

    WHAT IS MODEST FASHION?

    IFDC is not a religious body so the criterium is not something they will impose on anybody. Alia Khan explains that it is a matter of personal interpretation but there are some general guidelines.

    • Clothes that are not too revealing

    • Clothes that are loose-fitting

    • That have an appropriate neckline and no open backs

    • The sleeves should cover their arm up to the wrists

    • The length of the dress or skirt should reach the ankles

    • And the hijab

    TALKING ABOUT THE HIJAB

    Probably the most controversial piece of modest dressing, the hijab is more than just a piece of cloth. Alia shares with us what is behind it. “Not everybody is ready to follow it and they are many different ways to wear a hijab”.

    Hijab means partition, veil, something that protects you from something… in this case, evil. But they are many different hijabs.

    If you put a hijab in your tongue, you should not say bad things about people. Should you put a hijab in your eyes or in your mind, you should see the positives and not the negatives in people or situations. If you have a hijab in your heart, you wouldn’t harm anyone and try to be good, well-intentioned, and fair. All these hijabs come before the cloth over your head. It is a personal commitment to your beliefs.

    I must admit that this romantic way to explain what the hijab is, resonates more with me. Of course, in the podcast, we spoke about how the hijab is seen in other places as something imposed. Not a choice. IFDC is trying to change the narrative. Hijab is a personal choice and it doesn’t necessary correlates with any sort of repression. Of course, there are exceptions to every rule, but to focus on the exceptions is what is damaging how everyone else wearing a hijab is perceived.

    ABOUT THE IFDC FIRST EVENT: PRET- A- COVER BUYERS LANE

    The event that took place at City Walk took Alia and her team good 10 months to put together.

    “It took this long because it was the first event we were doing and because we wanted to do something original and never seen before”.

    And so, they did! The catwalk didn’t have models, but rather projections of each and every designer showcasing. This way not only the clothes but also the vibe and energy, the story or the inspiration were part of the experience. 15 LED screens, water screens, and around 20-25 projectors did the job. Not sure if it was easier than having the models doing the walk but definitely it was a different and unique concept, we might see more of.

    The sponsors seemed to be very happy and IFDC managed to get more sponsors interested in participating in the coming events.

    Pret-a- cover displayed the collections of 35 designers. You can read here our review of the event, but we can tell you that there was a lot of talent and enthusiasm...

    • 52 min

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