Actor and designer Rehmat Ajmal speaks to us about her brand Rehstore, her time at NCA and life after marriage
How did Rehstore come about?
Rehstore was born in 2019 shortly after I graduated from NCA. It combines my love for both art and fashion. Today, 3 years later it has surely become the most important part of my life. It is true what they say “If you do what you love, you’ll never work a day in your life.”
Tell us about your new collection.
Sona is a step forward for Rehstore as we introduce hand embellishments. Like every other custom article that is part of our work so far, these can also be customized and so it becomes a personalized, individualistic experience for the buyer. This collection is all about luxurious drapery that encapsulates festive energy while also remaining minimal. It is perfect for intimate weddings.
Who is your inspiration?
I always say I draw inspiration from nature. Sometimes I design around it and sometimes it designs around me.
What’s your favourite product?
It has to be the new hand painted envelopes and notecards set. It makes for a perfect gift for all stationery lovers.
You studied Textile and Design from NCA. Do you feel that gives you an edge over other designers that haven’t?
I feel everyone holds a unique expression as designers and artists. Personally, spending four years at NCA studying the subject has definitely helped me technically but I believe experience and hard work can take you a long way ahead in life with/without a degree.
How is married life going?
It is going great. Can’t believe it has been over a year!
How do you like Karachi?
I fall in love with Karachi everyday. There is something about the wind here that really lifts my spirit up. I also love the concept stores, coffee shops and local art running through the veins of the city. I cannot wait to have my friends visit so I can show them around!
How do you find the perfect work life balance?
Being a freelancer gives me the freedom to draw a perfect balance. It allows me to run my business, keep my marketing consultancy going and work hours that suit me. With a little bit of structure, discipline and empathy for yourself you can get the engine running pretty smoothly.
We see from your Instagram that you’ve taken up baking recently. How did that happen?
Well I have always been fond of cooking and baking. It is just that I am taking out more time to record videos and create content around it. I am finding it so soothing and therapeutic just like painting.
What are the differences between the two big metropolitan cities that you’ve operated from, Karachi and Lahore?
In some moments it feels like both cities are the same and in other moments it feels like they are not. I have found Karachi to be more diverse and also more fast paced in comparison to Lahore. But then Lahore is my home that is so culturally and historically enriched so really, one I am falling in love with and one I already love.
Does the pressure of cancel culture and posting the right thing ever get to you?
No, not really.
What advice would you give to young people who are trying to get their big break?
There are two things that will never fail you; hard work and consistency. If you are working hard to be consistent and are consistently working hard you will not have to find your big break as it will find you.
Is there a message that you would like to give to our readers?
I would definitely like to thank everyone who has ever helped me in regards to my small business. Your kindness and sincerity truly elevates the experience of it all. Be it the teams that come together to create artistic photographs or friends and family extending support and love. None of anything would be possible without all of you.
Photographer: Mehlum S. Sadriwala
Muse:Â Sona Rafiq
Hair & Makeup:Â Bryan William
Jewelry:Â Ali Javeri Jewelers