Nabila’s first coffee table book for L’Oreal is in the making and its bone structure looks visually stunning.
Documenting Nabila’s journey through hair design over 25 years, – from the absolutely subliminal to the extraordinarily whacko – and with Zain Mustafa involved in the conceptualization, Saima Zaidi the graphic designing and myself handling the text and editing there isn’t really much that can go wrong.
Let’s just hope the print quality does it justice.
The narrative is minimal and yet it’s so riveting in the way it connects the ebb and flow of her personal to her professional life. Nabila’s personal upheavals and their influence on her personal style reflect in everything little stroke of work she has done within that time frame. ‘Chaos’, for instance, the time when she was trying to find balance in relationships, motherhood and weight is reflected in her own unruly long hair (remember the sun-bleached, wispy haired image). Her work from that year speaks of the same emotion. Her models have long, unruly unkempt hair. They are almost clones of her, something she claims is never deliberate.
25 years is a long time and though there is much more that Nabila could have done in terms of expansion – a larger chain of salons, a product range to her name, more spas etc – she is someone who has believed in quality over quantity. It is the limitations of someone curtailed by the quest for perfection that seems to have been her only shortfall. She is a perfectionist, regimental in her drive and motivated to challenge no-one but herself. This, I feel has been the hindrance in growing at any faster rate. How ironic.
But this book will certainly be something to celebrate. One looks forward to the pristine bluntness of its cover, with the wash of six letters that will reflect self exploration, vanity, precision and everything the book is about: Nabila.