Faryal Aftab of Muse possesses not only an ethereal, pre-Raphaelite beauty, but also an intriguing perspective on the business of fashion. Through her creations, she offers the discerning Pakistani woman a chance to discover a more sensual, and captivating side to herself. Afshan Shafi catches up with Faryal to discuss, lawn, personal style and much more!
What do you think of designers lending out samples?
I don’t because how can I sell it if somebody has already worn it?
What trends would you like to see die?
Those fancy Patiala shalwars, they should definitely die. Bell sleeves and those other sleeve things that touch the floor, they should die. All those odd knots and twists should die. If you have print, knots and forty other things happening on one outfit, that very aesthetic should die.
Would you say that you have a more pared down perspective on summer fashion?
I think that I do, I don’t understand why women here shy away from wearing block colours in the summer. Why is it so hard to wear, say a pale pink kurta in soft cotton? Why does everything have to be so complicated?
What would you say about lawn fever?
It’s saturated with buttons, lace, print, embellishment, you name it , itâ€™s on there. You have to see that the garment doesn’t do anything for the â€œwomanâ€ herself. Is it making a woman look more desirable or prettier? I don’t think so.
If Muse were to come out with a lawn collection, what would it be like?
I would make sure that the prints were more girly, more delicate. I wouldn’t put two or more prints together. The shirt and dupatta would have more simple floral motifs , not enormous flowers but smaller in size.
What are your plans for expanding Muse in the future?
We’re expanding in all the big cities soon and are currently also in talks with big design houses in Paris for a special project. Fingers crossed!
What do you think makes a woman stylish?
I think that if a woman takes care of her hands and feet, has her hair done, then she feels good. Being well groomed is stylish. If you are groomed, then even non-designer wear can look beautiful.
Muse is in talks with big design houses in Paris for a special project
Photography by Naveed Bhatti
Who are your favourite International designers ?
Christian Dior, Lanvin, Chloe, Saint Laurent, Valentino, Rodarte
Who are your favourite local designers?
I would say that I donâ€™t have a particular favorite locally but I do admire Kamiar Rokniâ€™s work. I love the traditional techniques that he uses. Across the border I do follow what Sabyasaachi is doing.
I love wearing teekas, maatha patteesÂ and other hair ornaments. I hardly wear other types of jewellery.
What is your favourite high street store?
I love Zara, especially the menswear section more then womenswear
Favourite shoes in your closet?
These Chanel ones where you switch on a button and the shoes light up.
â€˜I am Loveâ€™, â€˜Pricelessâ€™ which is a French film and â€˜ Notes on a Scandalâ€™. I love documentaries as well for example â€˜ The Last Emperorâ€™ by Valentino
Your closet is a shrine to?
I like reading, but I like easy reads. My favourite is How To Be A Parisian Wherever You Are
Celebrity you would love to dress?
There are so manyâ€”most of the models who walk for Christian Dior, or Chanel. French actress Marion Cotillard is a perennial favourite as well as Audrey Tautou.