Farah Talib Aziz enters retail with a bang in this exciting collaboration with Crimson
Exclusivity has always been what Farah Talib Aziz has maintained as a brand. No runway presence, no retail store — you want an FTA ensemble? You'll have to seek it out.
Things are about to change. Soon, we're going to see Crimson stores pop up in Karachi and Lahore, the brainchild of Anum Akram.
"I realized soon after I graduated that I was interested in creating a retail brand. I wanted my very own high street brand but with relatively reasonable pricing; however, I knew that there's a lot that goes into launching a brand — there's the design aspect and then production and marketing," shares Akram, whose family owns the rights to the multi-designer clothing store Labels in Lahore.
What does that have to do with FTA, you ask? Well, the designer house will be taking the reigns of the creative division of the budding label.
Maliha of FTA says the brand decided to partner with Crimson to maintain FTA's exclusivity. "I find it strange that someone wears a bridal by a particular designer worth lakhs and there's also a Rs1500 scarf by the same label in the market. It loses it's luxe."
Maliha Aziz, the Director of Communications explains for the brand, "We're operating under the Crimson banner because we as a brand (Farah Talib Aziz, that is) are high-end and I find it strange that someone wears a bridal by a particular designer worth lakhs and there's also 1500 rupee scarves by the same label in the market. It loses it's luxe so that's why we decided to partner up in this manner. We're doing all the designing, down to the interior of the store, so the aesthetic of FTA will become more accessible but as a label, it's still highly exclusive and a separate entity."
Why Farah Talib Aziz?
"We decided to collaborate with one designer and FTA was the only designer we approached or even had in mind from the get go. There are tons of people doing good design work but for some reason, their lawn or pret fails to strike a chord with the general public. FTA is classic and safe and we know they won't do anything too outrageous while still pushing the aesthetic envelope," states Anum.
"It's evident from the product how much thought and effort has gone into it. Nothing is random; every motif is there for a reason. We've experimented with embroidery but if we've done Spanish embroidery on one, we've done chicken kari on the next. Nothing has been repeated which is a testament to the versatility of the collection."
"We wanted to just retain creative control and the Crimson team were willing to handle all the logistics of production and retail so it's been a great marriage of expertise," says Maliha of FTA.
"We want to be more accessible as a brand and the thought of going high-street had been on the agenda for a long time. It's just that the business side of it was intimidating so when Anum Akram and I met and this collaboration came along, it was the perfect match. We wanted to just retain creative control and they were willing to handle all the logistics of production and retail so it's been a great marriage of expertise," adds Maliha.
Quality over quantity
The first collection will be a mix of unstitched cloth and ready to wear. It will have 16 unstitched lawns with chiffon/silk dupattas and 8 pret kurtas, which will start from Rs2200.
"Our priority was quality: we've sourced everything from the best of the best in the business. Our printing has been done by this textile mill that mostly does export work and has barely taken on local work otherwise, our silk has been imported, our dupattas have been brought in from China," says Anum.
Maliha chimes in: "I'm excited. We get to the best of both worlds; lawn is great but it's seasonal, pret is the future."