Some talk shalk with the gorgeous Khadija Shah of Elan, Enjoy!
ss: How did you celebrate the holidays?
KS: I went to nathiagali with my friends and all our babies.
ss: What's your favorite winter food?
ss: What was your childhood nickname, and what's your nickname now?
KS: Dija and still is
ss: What was the first movie you remember seeing as a child?
KS: Sound of Music
ss: What's your favorite store in the world?
KS: Harvey Nichol’s and Label’s Karachi
ss: What's your favorite Fashion memory?
KS: At college when I was at my thinnest, I wore these white skinny pants with a white sleeveless tank and a long beige suede and fur coat on top and went super chic clubbing in Chicago. It was great fun people thought I was a celebrity or something.
ss: Have you ever been discouraged or felt challenged in pursuing your innovative take to Fashion?
KS: Well sometimes I do, when I send something I think is fabulous to the stores and it’s not very enthusiastically received because people want to to go for the same old things, but that’s mostly in Lahore. I love designing for the Karachi lot. Also, its very frustrating when other designers start copying my work and pretend its there brilliant idea; but the up side is that it also keeps me on my toes because I constantly want to come up with new things..
ss: You were the first to introduce the use of various fabric dimensions in garments, and every one has followed... Does it matter when people claim to be the pioneers?
KS: Well I never used to lay claim to anything before. As long as my clients appreciated the clothes and the sales were good I liked to keep a low profile. BUT then I noticed other designers were not only copying my work but also claiming to have been the brains behind those designs. That has really annoyed me and now I do like to admit when asked, that I did start the printed back, plain front trend and also the many different color/prints, paneled shirts at least in Lahore. I believe Sana Safinaz in Karachi also started doing them at roughly the same time but I didn’t know about that till much later as I had not seen their work since I made some of my own wedding clothes from them in 2006. Hence they were not my inspiration as I’m sure I wasn’t there’s
ss: What was the most rewarding - and challenging - thing about Fashion?
KS: Well the most rewarding is when your work is recognized, as you have done by interviewing me for your web-site. The most challenging I would say is to keep upping the design ante and keep your collections fresh and innovative without losing your signature style.
ss: Please look up from your computer and describe what you see.
KS: I can see a beautiful Anver Shafi landscape.
ss: What do you want the Elan woman to feel?
KS: Elegant and Luxe.
ss: The most understated Designer in the Fashion Industry?
KS: They are all mostly over-stated.
ss: The most over stated Designer in the Fashion Industry?
KS: I wouldn’t like to comment.
ss: Tell me about your favorite item of clothing/accessories and why it's so special to you?
KS: My gold Rolex, it has a customized ruby and sapphire strap and is absolutely stunning. It’s so special because my grandmother had got it for me when I was hardly a teenager to give me on my wedding. Sadly she passed away long before that and my mother presented it to me on her behalf.
ss: When was the last time you wrote a letter? Received one?
KS: I write letters all the time. I feel I can communicate best through writing. They are all mostly addressed to my husband Jehanzeb. Sometimes he is gracious enough to write one back haha so his would also be the last one I got.
ss: What's the greatest or most important lesson your parents taught you?
KS: Stand on your own feet.
ss: What's the first thing you do when you get home at night after work?
KS: Run to my babies!
ss: What's the worst gift you ever received?
KS: I can’t say. I get boring gifts all the time but I can’t pin point one as the worst.
ss: What never fails to make you cry?
KS: A mother losing a child even if it’s in a movie.
ss: When are you happiest?
KS: With my family or my real true friends.
ss:What's your favorite time of the day?
KS: Morning. I sketch, have my tea and chill-out in my pj’s with Zaydakbar and Hakan.
ss: What is the last thing you googled?
KS: Party games for grown-ups.
ss: What is the price range for your bridals? If someone doesn't afford to pay all at once, Do you have a deferred payment plan?
KS: My samples range from 200,000 to 400,000. But I design for people with all sorts of budgets.
ss: How does one do about interning at Elan? And is it only for Fashion student?
KS: Anyone interested in interning can email me their CV and if it works for me, I’ll ask them to come in for an interview and we’d take it from there. I feel people can have a flair for fashion without necessarily studying fashion and therefore I’d hire talented people regardless of what degree they have.
ss:Fashion only for the rich? your take...
Ks: I disagree. Some of the most fashionable people I’ve seen, put together great looks for themselves with high street or vintage clothing. Some even tailor there own outfits. Not all Rich people are fashionable and many people with limited means are insanely trendy..
ss: What is your computer desktop pattern/screen saver and how often do you change it?
KS: My son Zaydakbar’s picture from when he was born. He is two now so its not been changed since.
KS: Upfront and Honest
KS: apologize for speaking the truth
ss: Hard line truth about what you do, for those who wish to do it.
KS: it’s not all fun and games. You need to put in as much hard work as any other job if you want to be a success. And be prepared to never have any clothes for yourself!
SS: What do you think about Style Stripped and which is your favorite section?
KS: I think its great fun, ever since ive been introduced to it I regularly check it out. Its pure unadulterated fashion lowdown!