Dima Ayad

Dima Ayad

by Melissa Magsaysay

Designer Dima Ayad on Why Fashion is For Every Woman

Designer Dima Ayad’s story isn’t entirely different from anyone who has ever had an issue finding something they love to wear in their size. But she did decide to do something about it and has managed to build a brand that celebrates individual style and the female form (in all of its shapes, curves and sizes).

The Dubai-based fashion designer found a lack of event appropriate clothing that was neither fast fashion nor couture. The “in between” failed to exist.

Cut to 2010 when Ayad took matters into her own hands and launched her eponymous label to great success.

Expect out of the box looks like pleated gold wide leg pants, baby pink ruffle neck tunics and even a shiny gold turban to boot.

Ayad’s clothing may not be for wallflowers, but also doesn’t scream to be heard. It’s a street style star’s go-to brand and appeals to anyone who wants a few statement making pieces to break up a sea of black and neutral basics.

Here, Ayad shared her insights on being a fashion designer and the difference between size-inclusiveness in the Middle East vs. the USA.

Q & A With Dima

Where are you from and where do you live?

I'm Lebanese and have lived in Dubai for 35 years now.

What inspired you to become a fashion designer?

I never studied fashion nor was it anything I dreamt I would have wanted to be when I was a little girl. I struggled to find clothes that suited me with enough of a variety of styles in my size (I'm tall and broad). One summer I had many weddings to attend and had a very hard time finding anything. It was either super high street or haute couture - nothing in the middle. I made my own clothes that entire season and friends and family asked me to make dresses for them. I then created my first collection and so it began!

What is your point of view as a designer?

Effortless! The clothes should speak for themselves. You should always wear what suits you and not follow a trend just because it exists. Cliche as it may sound, Be YOU! What you wear is a reflection of you!

Why is it important to you to create fashion-forward clothes for all sizes?

Because we are not all created the same! Inclusivity is everything and fashion is for every woman and we're in 2018 - nothing is the same anymore. Everyone counts and every woman should find clothes in every collection to buy.

Being based in Dubai, do you feel like you have a different perspective on body/size and fashion than we might in America?

The world keeps getting smaller that's for sure; social media, the internet, and global trends on runways remain the same. Dubai is such a cosmopolitan city where we are exposed to over 150 nationalities. America started the inclusivity trend way before anywhere else and slowly that is trickling into this market. My perspective on body/size is the same had I lived elsewhere.

From your perspective, do you feel like the fashion industry has made great strides in becoming more inclusive? What more would you like to see happen in this regard?

I think we've come a long way but we are nowhere close. What I would really like to see is inclusivity and not segregation. All sizes should be on one floor on the same rail and not divided into separate sections to view collections. Designers really need to just have sizes available and market the fact that they do and not shy away from it.

Describe your personal style?

I'm all about comfort in clothes. Even to a gala, part of my confidence comes through in how comfortable I am in what I'm wearing. Effortless chic, lots of monochrome, and I really do love my bling.

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