Interviews

From our Archives -Sana Safinaz: Never a dull moment

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Sana Safinaz started out some 22 years ago, without any formal training for the field of fashion design. And have been, since then treading the uphill road only, standing tall as one of the very best designers of the country.

Let us see what they share with Brides & You:

B&Y: Do you have any formal training for this profession? Do you think it helps to have a degree in the field? If not what is the most essential ingredient that makes a designer label as successful as Sana Safinaz?

SS: Neither of us have been formally trained and have been self-taught for the most part. It has always been something that both of us have been naturally inclined towards.

ONE OF THE MOST ESSENTIAL INGREDIENTS FOR A SUCCESSFUL BRAND IS TO KEEP GROWING AND EVOLVING. WE TRY TO KEEP OUR FINGER ON THE PULSE OF THE EMERGING INTERNATIONAL FASHION -TRENDS AND FORECASTS in terms of cuts, colours, fabrics etc and we set our own standards accordingly.

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B&Y: How long has the journey been to date? What obstacles did you face when you began and entered into this field?

SS: Sana Safinaz was established in 1989. Over two decades ago, when we first emerged there was a gaping void in our local market for well-priced, innovative luxury designs. Our pret line was established primarily as result of this. We faced all obstacles courageously and came out in brilliant colours.

B&Y: What factors made your work stand out among your contemporaries? What is your niche as designers?

SS: Our work has always stood out primarily due to our design philosophy and focus on a fusion of Eastern and Western sensibilities. Alongside our unique colour schemes we have also maintained an innovative approach to our cuts.

B&Y: What materials do you love working with?

SS: We don’t limit ourselves with regard to the kind of material we would work with but we particularly enjoy working with chiffon, satin and crepe.

B&Y: Do you believe in simple or extravagant cuts and embellishments?

SS: We currently have five very different lines and collections. As a result

YOU WILL FIND SIMPLE, UNDERSTATED DESIGNS IN OUR RANGE AS WELL AS THE EXTRAVAGANT AND BOLD WITH MORE DETAILED EMBELLISHMENTS. WHAT REMAINS CONSTANT IS THE FASHION FORWARD NATURE AND UNDISPUTED ELEGANCE OF EACH DESIGN.

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B&Y: What part do each of you play in the team? Do both of you design or have you divided responsibilities?

SS: Both of us design exclusively for our brand. Over the years of working together we have differentiated different work areas between ourselves. Overall the pressures and responsibilities are shared by both of us.

B&Y: What made you decide to branch out into lawn designing and what kind of response did you get for the lawn?

SS: We have been doing lawn for approximately fourteen years with different companies over the years.  It was the natural progression that was required in order to reach out to the masses and make our brand name available to them. The response has been overwhelming and very happily and humbly received!

B&Y: How do you feel about Prêt?

SS: Prêt is a wonderful line as it allows us to give the clients our overall look and style for an affordable price.

B&Y: Who are your favourite photographers? Which shoots have been your favourite to date?

SS: We typically work with Guddu Shani for all our shoots. It’s difficult to pick a favorite shoot as Shani always delivers 100% each time!

B&Y: What problems do designers face in our country related to the work force and how do you feel when you see your work being copied and mass produced?

SS: Having our work copied and counterfeited is one of the major problems we face on a daily basis.  It is upsetting to say the least and it is about time that stronger laws were put in place to stop this kind of copyright infringement and hijacking of intellectual property.  We are not tolerant about this issue and we try to counter it as best as we can. We appeal to the consumers to also assist all designers in this endeavour by refusing to settle for anything but the original product as nothing can compare to that.  THERE SIMPLY IS NO SUCH THING AS A “GOOD” COPY OF OUR PRODUCT; IT ALWAYS LOOKS LIKE A CHEAP KNOCK-OFF.

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B&Y: How many international forums have you showcased for? How was the experience?

SS: We feel our main market is in Pakistan and we have made that our primary focus, as a result we have not partaken in many international forums.

B&Y: Your comment on the Fashion Weeks?

SS: Fashion Weeks are fashion industry events that occur worldwide and allow designers to showcase their collections and their talents.  They draw the focus of buyers and consumers and as a result are a vital proponent to the emergence of new trends and the general evolution and growth of fashion.

B&Y: What are your future plans?

SS: Sana Safinaz as a lifestyle brand is always growing and evolving, we strive to continually keep the creative juices flowing and never become complacent.  We have just wrapped up our Autumn/Winter Export launches and will be working on the Spring/Summer Export line. Alongside this we are planning on launching our lawn collection in March. All the while our pret, diffusion, bridal/couture collection and furniture/interior design operations are ongoing simultaneously. There is never a dull moment!

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B&Y: Any message for the upcoming designers who are your great fans?

SS: Be true to your vision and your design philosophy and be creative. Do not replicate what has already been coined by other designers; carve out your own niche.

B&Y: Advice for the brides for the coming season? What colours, cuts and styles will be in?

SS: We are still focusing on the long kameez style. We will be going for a more streamlined overall cut. We also plan on using a softer colour palette as well as brighter colour combinations. A delightful interview of two spirited and wonderful women, Brides & You hopes to see greater feats from this duo in the future and wishes them tons of success.

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