(MENAFN - Muscat Daily) Bold, comfortable and classy “ the abayas define the styles of designer Reem al Zadjali and Misha Daud, owner of Eye Candy boutique, whom she has teamed up with to make her label 'House of Reem' available at Opera Galleria.
As the launch was on National Day, Reem had abayas incorporated with design elements from Sur and Dhofar. Misha was also dressed in an outfit designed by Reem. ''I am a huge fan of Dhofari clothes so I said 'Make me something that I will like'. She came up with this. It's lovely,'' Misha said.
After designing clothes that were available for sale only over the Internet, Misha is thrilled to be housing Reem's label at Eye Candy. ''We have to encourage each other as women. I want everybody to do as well as they can. I am proud of her for wanting to leave a mark in the world,'' Misha said.
Eye Candy is home to Jimmy Choo, Stella McCartney and a host of world famous designer clothes, shoes and accessories. ''Reem's collection is part of the store because it fits perfectly with what Eye Candy is all about. For me, it's about the quality of the work, the fabric. I wouldn't do it if it weren't something that I personally believed in. Oman has been my home for 19 years. If there's anything I can do to help anybody I will. I've always been looking for something local. As for Reem, I fell in love with her abayas,'' Misha said, adding that on occasions she too liked to wear abayas, perhaps with some embellishments or detailing.
Reem, a mother of two boys, was a practising lawyer who thoroughly enjoyed the challenges of her profession. But when dressing for court was restricted to abayas, she felt the need for something that allowed her to make a personal statement. ''The abaya is more of a cultural than a religious symbol. I want to see women of all nationalities wearing the abaya,'' Reem said.
Her flair for design attracted enquiries from friends and family members. After an online course from Milan and some hands-on experience in the UK, Reem was ready to let her label do the talking. ''Before, when people enquired where the abayas I wore were from, I wouldn't tell them that I had designed them myself,'' she said.
This year, Reem launched a Summer Collection and a Michael Jackson collection, inspired by the pop hits of the singer. The straight lines and rich tones seem to say 'This is me', making Reem's fiercely independent spirit hard to hide. ''Even my models are friends of mine who have their own professions. I make it a point to feature only models with a strong identity,'' she said. Her plans for the future include a prt--porter line.
''Sometimes I am told that my clothes are good only for skinny figures. A ready-to-wear line should change that,'' Reem said.
Active on Instagram, Reem features regular updates and a fashion icon every week for her followers.
''I love fashion and shopping. It is fuelled by my interest in design,'' she said, scrolling her phone for her favourite icons Grace Kelly and Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. ''Misha's store is a place where I have always been able to find things I like and would buy for myself. Being able to display my designs in such a place feels ri