(MENAFN - Muscat Daily) He is 20. Young, but means serious business. Passionate, though not a go-getter. Stylish, without too much struggle.
A fashonista and now, a designer. Meet Ale al Zadjali. Quirky just like his name, which he refashioned from his original Ali, to best define him: Unique. Zadjali's first collection was launched last week under the label Esque by Ale' at Vivid Boutique in Bareeq al Shatti.
As part of his solo fashion line, Zadjali has designed a set of chiffon and velvet jackets of varied hues and prints for women, some of which have also been inspired from the masar.
What's intriguing is that they do not look anything like your ordinary jacket. Though Zadjali insists they are, and wouldn't want to call them otherwise.
The cuts, style and flow are unusual, with some falling like trails, and a few also bearing hoods, but all designed without bearing any particular size in mind. ''It makes my creation timeless, you can wear it no matter what size you are...there's no need to dwell on finding your size and being upset on not finding one. This way, you have the collection and pick out the piece that you love. Customer satisfaction is a big deal to me, and I strive to achieve it,'' he says.
He goes on to explain why he used the word ''esque'' for his label. Esque is usually used as a suffix, he says, adding, ''In a way, it is used as an accessory to a word. My jackets function like accessories whilst also being a clothing. They can be considered as an addition to your outfit something you'd expect of your accessories. Yes they're jackets, but they add a little touch to what you might want to wear one day and glam it up!''
Interestingly, Zadjali's not been to any fashion school, and is no ardent follower of current trends either. He made it here just because he loves fashion. ''Fashion has always been a part of me, it was never my main focus but always an interest. I don't know how or when I developed the sense of interest in fashion, but for as long as I remember, I've always been fashion savvy,'' says Zadjali, clarifying that being fashion savvy doesn't necessarily mean following the latest trends.
''My style and my line represent me, they don't represent the current trends; they are a trend on their own. In fact, I am a trend of my own,'' he says, confidently flaunting a prototype jacket that he designed for men.
But designing his own collection was never really on his mind, at least not until a year ago, says the fashion designer, telling us how this fortunate accident happened.
''When I designed my clothes, my intention was never to sell them or create Esque. It was simply me listening to Lady Gaga and messing around with material at 3am. I showed it to my friends and they loved it. So I created pieces for them and luckily Monique Helou, the general manager of Vivid Boutique saw it on one of them and got in touch with me,'' says the designer, who gets most of his inspiration from pop culture.
That makes sense. Because until before he launched his fashion line, Zadjali was a pop culture blogger, running feature articles, reviews and updates. He ''still blogs,'' claiming that it's very much a part of him. ''I've always been a pop music fan and I grew to develop a certain (healthy) obsession and admiration for celebs and their lives...my blog expresses my feelings towards this. My reviews and articles are usually written from a fan's point of view, not a casual music lover.''
There is no denying that Zadjali is a source of envy for many young fashion designers, especially those who are struggling to find a footing. But while Zadjali admits he got lucky, he says that chasing for fame and opportunities closes more doors than expected.
''Over the course of the last two years I have met up with a slew of upcoming designers who were all ironically, older than me. Their main problem was that they're chasing fame. They want the money and they want the recognition. I don't carry such baggage, and am very comfortable with exploring new avenues; mostly, I design, because I enjoy doing it.''
That's the attitude, he believes, worked for him, and would work for many, if they could only love