Safia Minney recently interviewed Designer Zakee Shariff about her great new collection for People Tree AW13. We love Zakee’s philosophical outlook on life and love. Take a read, then take a look at the beautiful pieces she’s designed with us – inspired by the festive season.
Safia: Why is your Zakee Shariff for People Tree red hot for the festive season?
Zakee: I came up with a print and People Tree designed the shapes. For me the colour just makes you feel special, loved and sexy. The print makes you want to smile and feel alive! The styles are just so feminine. The colour represents female empowerment to me.
My style tips are to trust yourself; you’ll feel great when you wear it! Talk about the garment with your friends and colleagues around you – it will make you smile. You can accessorise it or keep it simple and classic.
Safia: Amazing cute bird designs. What inspired them?
Zakee: I have always wanted my prints to have a message of peace and love; to encourage people to think a bit more about the world that we live in and the decisions we make, as well to touch people’s hearts and emotions. The bird was a symbol of freedom to me, and of something connected more to nature and wildlife.
Safia: If you were a bird, and could fly, where would you fly to?
Zakee: I would fly to the park to enjoy the peace of nature…
Safia: Peace signs in tear drops….feels subtly symbolic?
Zakee: The raining peace drop is something I have used in my work for about 15 years, and has become quite an iconic symbol in my work. I wanted to make a symbol that represented peace raining all over us…I did some drawings…and thus the symbol was born.
Safia: What saddens you about fast fashion?
Zakee: Fast fashion makes me sad because there is no intention to create something timeless and treasured. It’s where and how it is made that upsets me too. People don’t have to think – they just have to be dictated to. I’m interested in people finding something that works with who they are and what they believe in.
Safia: Love your shooting stars range for People Tree. If you had one wish upon a star for the fashion industry, what would it be?
Zakee: That more companies would follow People Tree’s lead, and produce clothing ethically.