In Conversation with Sabrina Tariq Sheikh from Zaibunnisa | Billboard Pakistan

We got in talks with Sabrina Tariq Sheikh, the mastermind behind Zaibunnisa. She's the sole creative head responsible for this famous clothing brand that sells high-quality clothes for women online.

Q1. Tell us a little bit about yourself and how you started Zaibunnisa. 

Zaibunnisa has been part of the textile industry for the last 50 years but in a commodity market. I always wanted to capture this market with a name that truly represents me and gives me the recognition that I’ve dreamed of, but I also wanted that name to represent me in various dimensions.

Q2. How did you develop your interest in fashion designing?

As mentioned, I wanted to present myself in different dimensions including colours, quality, etc. In my mind’s eye, fashion designing was something I anticipated doing since the start.  Once I manage to create a theme that would bring my creativity to life, I make sure to do justice to it. 

Q3. What’s your vision for Zaibunnisa for the next five years?

I wish to see Zaibunnisa in every mall and every prime location of Pakistan so that it can have a huge name. Moreover, I aspire for it to be the most visited and go-to online brand where people can find high-quality clothing. In conclusion, I want Zaibunnisa to be a synonym for high-quality fashion.

Q4. What is your take on inclusivity, be it in the form of colour, shape, or size in the fashion industry?

I look forward to the time in our industry when the models walking down ramps will portray diversity. Whether they are dusky, plus-size, or shorter than the strict minimum height requirement, beauty and talent cannot and is not defined by these rules and regulations. Although some brands do choose dark-skinned models for their shoots, but they end up editing their pictures to make them look fairer. Once this mindset is changed and some measures are taken to be more inclusive, the industry will be a much better place. 

Q5. What’s your thought process behind every design or collection? How do you come up with collections from scratch?

First and foremost, I choose the colour palette in accordance with the season, for example, brighter colours for summer collections. Every dress has its theme of around five colours according to which it is finalized. Apart from this, I carefully analyze the market and different brands to get a better insight into what is in demand. Using this gathered data, I work on the collections. 

Q6. Who is your inspiration or idol that you look up to?

I idolize my grandmother a lot. When we were setting up this brand, my father suggested naming it after my grandmother, whose name was Zaibunnisa. Although she has passed, I continue to look up to her because she was an independent woman with a bold character and inspirational personality. 

Q7. What’s your thought process behind every design that you create?

I try to think of a colour palette, the theme, season and many other aspects before I create a design. After that, I illustrate it on Adobe Illustrator to get a visual idea of it. The manufacturing and tailoring process then starts to bring the design to life which includes getting the required material such as cloth, threads for embroidery and prints and so on.

Q8. How would you describe your designs, is there any theme that you try to follow?

Every design is made according to a different theme, so I won’t say that I follow a specific theme. Every collection is different from the previous one.

Q9. If you weren’t a designer then what career path would you have chosen?

If I wasn’t a designer, I would’ve chosen to be a model as I always loved the field.

Q10. What’s one quality that you believe every design should have?

I believe that every design should have a meaning behind it. We cannot put different elements which have different meanings in one design. Also, while designing, we should make sure that the design does not hurt anyone’s personal beliefs or sentiments. 

You can check out Zaibunnisa’s latest collection, Embellish Vol.1 on their website.

Check out their Facebook page for more details and follow their Instagram page for exciting updates.

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