Interview with Rayan Al Sulaimani, CEO Atelier Zuhra

Atelier Zuhra is a rare female-founded couture house that embodies feminine grace and power. 

Omani-born Mousa Al Awfi always dreamed of dressing current and future generations of women with a high fashion glamour. After enjoying raising five children (four girls and a boy), Mousa decided to launch her dream brand: Atelier Zuhra. 

With gorgeous bespoke gowns, Atelier Zuhra opened on the 1st July 2015 its first couture atelier in Dubai. With an impeccable eye for detail and embroidery, Atelier Zuhra quickly became the favourite go-to-couturier for Arab royals, Bollywood actresses and Hollywood stars. 

Bollywood clients include Deepika Padukone, Alia Abhatt, Yami Gautam, Kareena Kapoor, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, Sonam Kapoor, Esha Gupta, Bhumi Pednekar, Janhvi Kapoor, Swara Bhasker, Kiara Advani, Khushi Kapoor, Ayesha Omar, Sonakshi Sinha, and Jacqueline Fernandez. 

7 Star Life recently had the pleasure of interviewing this renowned style icon for a delightful delve into her glittering career in inimitable couture.

 

  1. Tell me how it all began- what was it like taking over the company from your mother?

My mother has always been my biggest source of inspiration and she has always encouraged my enthusiasm in the field of design. Because of my solid business foundation alongside my adoration for fashion I chose to take over the company. I was so lucky to have a mother who was willing to hand over the reins to me. In the initial stages it was challenging but with hard work and determination it enabled my team to become what we are today.

  1. How do you measure success & what does success mean to you?

For me success is making my clients happy. Bringing a smile on their face after seeing the final outcome and gaining their trust means everything to me. In addition, seeing international royalty and global celebrities wear and appreciate our designs is a dream come true.

  1. What was the path you took to get where you are today?

I come from a business background so that helped me take the Atelier to the next level. Besides that, I feel being creative, innovative and hardworking is imperative in any field to achieve success.

  1. What has been your biggest accomplishment to date?

My biggest accomplishment is having being given a chance to be a part of London Fashion Week calendar as the first GCC national to participate in a solo show.

  1. How would you describe yourself in one Word?

Focused

  1. What words of encouragement would you like to pass on to those who wish to follow inyour footsteps?

I would encourage them to keep up with their dreams, but I would also advise them to be creative and get prepared to compete! The fashion industry is very competitive which requires designers to be uniquely distinguishable from their competitors.

  1. What other CEO’s do you look up to?

Vera Wang

  1. We are so excited to see your London Fashion Week 2020 collection being unveiled at the royal Opera House. Please can you tell us little more about the preparation you & your team have undertaken for the show?

This specific season has been very stressful because we had a very short time to design all the new pieces being showcased. We have created 50 different looks in exactly two months – it has been an extremely stressful time for me and my team!

  1. Do you have any new collections or limited-edition products forthcoming in the UK?

We have limited edition pieces that will be showcased exclusively at London Fashion Week this season.

  1. What future plans do you have for atelier Zuhra? Where is next after LFW?

As a design house we believe in growth. We try to reach new levels of success with every collection we design and this ethos has definitely worked in our favour. I am extremely satisfied with the level of success we have reached in such a small amount of time. Having said that, I feel we have a lot of scope for expanding the label even further by exposing it to as many countries as possible. In the near future I want my label to be easily reachable to countries beyond the Middle East.

 

 

 

Mitra Wicks

Editor in Chief