After easing into the system with a collection of 25 unstitched prints in August, Khadijah Shah’s young high street brand ZAHA just recently launched its first capsule of ready to wear tunics. Fresh, quirky and colourful prints made their way to our wardrobes and those ladies who weren’t proactive missed the bus. ZAHA R2W went live for online sale at midnight on October 10 and within a few hours 10 out of 15 prints were sold out.
I got in touch with Khadijah, who has a young baby girl as old as the brand (in fact the name ZAHA is a spin off of her daughter’s name) to chat about the collection and the response it got.
How does ZAHAR2W stand out in a sea of printed tunics available in the market, I asked her?
“The first thing that sets ZAHA apart is that we’re bringing runway ready designs to the high street,” Khadijah explained. “When you buy ZAHA you’re getting the closest thing to a luxury product that you can get at a very low price point. Our prints and designs are meticulously researched and thought out with all artwork being created by our in-house artists and designers.”
I already knew which designs I like best (and have vented over the fact that they were sold out before I could get my hands on them) but I also want to know which designs are your favourite?
“Birds of a Feather, Saddle Club and Drip Drop have to be my favourite designs because they are three distinct designs that portray the true ZAHA ethos,” Khadijah smiled. “Birds of a feather has surreal artistic elements and is one of the quirkiest prints in our collection; the colour palette of Saddle Club is sophisticated while the equestrian themed print keeps the vibe fun and cool and Drip Drop is one of our most minimal designs yet it has great impact with the cute embellished bird detail.”
Being a fan of everything black and white, Drip Drop was my favourite print too.
So, would ZAHA now produce both unstitched and R2W or is the brand still testing the waters?
“We will be focusing on everyday clothing with a distinctive flair,” Khadijah said. “The ZAHA aesthetic is quirky, vibrant and fun. I am a big fan of print and at ZAHA we marry current trends with unexpected colour palettes to create prints that are unique, youthful and not something you’d normally find on the high street. This will apply across the board to both our unstitched and R2W collections.”
Will it stay online or will there be brick and mortar too?
“Right now we are online and we stock at the Elan stores in Lahore and Karachi but we will eventually be opening Zaha’s own brick and mortar stores as well.”
Lastly, I asked Khadijah what type of woman she saw wearing ZAHA and how was the ZAHA woman different from the Élan woman?
“While the Élan and ZAHA women are similar in that they both have a very distinctive eye for fashion, ZAHA with its inclusive price point has a greater reach than Élan. The ZAHA woman is an adventurous dresser who isn’t afraid to take risks and is always looking for original and avant-garde designs. She’s the architect who wants to be comfortable while on site visits but still looking her best when she meets the girls for lunch afterwards. Or the college girl who likes to be the centre of attention on or off campus.”