New York fashion designer, ak Mojet, is introducing her sharmbaa IS... line of “Infinitude” Shrugs, with a May Pop-Up Shop coming to RSPOP+ at the Roger Smith Hotel. As part of the interactional experience, customers are invited to meet the designer and experiment with the four styles currently available. The Inifinitude Shrugs are made from high-end fabrics designed to move with the body for an elegant, feminine look. With opening day approaching, Lion'esque Group wanted to introduce the brand with a quick Q&A with the designer, ak Mojet:
LG: What is the inspiration behind the brand?
AK: Fulfilling the need for an item that plays cleverly together to fit a life in motion with luxurious lightweight warmth, femininity and functionality. The inspired idea known as sharmbaa Infinitude Shrugs came to me one hazy, hot and humid New York City summer day while sitting in a frigid movie theater to escape the heat. I was in a modern day dilemma: freezing cold air-conditioning inside and hot, unbearable weather outside. As I draped a bulky cardigan sweater and a scarf around my shoulders to ward off the chill of the air-conditioning, I absentmindedly played with the two fabrics while watching the movie “Inception”. Draping, folding and wrapping the fabrics in style after style after style, a shrug within a scarf within a cardigan, unfolded. By using the sleeves as cowl and the scarf as a cape, I created several versatile looks that defied easy labels. An elegant solution for lightweight warmth on the go was created that day and the niche market known as Infinitude Shrugs has arrived for spring 2014.
LG: What does Sharmbaa mean to you?
AK: The brand name sharmbaa is the sum of shoulders + arms + back + and more!, which actively invites wearers of the garment to participate in the creation of their own looks and styles. Wearers are invited to fashion their fashion in limitless ways, bound only by one’s own imagination.
LG: Describe your target customer:
AK: The upwardly mobile creative/clever professional woman, the affluent artist/entrepreneurial woman, the savvy woman traveler.
LG: Why did you choose a pop-up?
AK: This is my first pop-up shop and the retail premiere of the sharmbaa Infinitude Shrugs. The number one benefit of a pop-up is the ability to create my brand’s experiential environment exactly the way I want it to be introduced into the world. Setting the tone and feel of my brand is important to me, as I want to share the creative vision that is sharmbaa. I’m looking forward to interacting with sharmbaa’s customers, to hear their comments about the sharmbaa brand and to invite customers and buyers into the sharmbaa community.
LG: What do you like about the concept?
AK: sharmbaa is all about experiential versatility and pop-ups (I project) are too! I love the freedom and flexibility pop-ups create by enabling me to set up shop in various locations in NYC and throughout the United States. After I assess how my first pop-up goes, I’m hoping to continue down this path and would like to do a tour of the NYC Pop-ups. After that, I’d like to expand by traveling across the USA in various locations with pop-ups.
LG: What are you hoping to learn about your brand and customers throughout the pop-up?
AK: What feeling is evoked when they step into the sharmbaaShoppe? Will they want to participate in learning about this new niche market of Infinitude Shrugs? Will they be willing to purchase one or two styles of sharmbaa Infinitude Shrugs? Does my branding work? How can I convey what my item is quickly & efficiently? I’d like to create an environment that inspires creativity, conversation and community. This also allows me to get hands on market research about my brand.
LG: What will you have in-store that is new and fresh for the spring and what trends are you excited to see?
AK: The sharmbaa SimplySilk line will be available as sized and made to order items in Crêpe De Chine and chiffon silks. The customer can come in, select their colours, leave a 50% deposit and we will make their sharmbaa right here in NYC’s garment district, within a week or two. Also, a select edition of Crêpe De Chine and wool knit as well as Crêpe De Chine and cotton knit will be available, on a first come basis. I love the Pantone colour of the year, Radiant Orchid. I’m creating some lovely Infinitude Shrugs in collaboration with LA knitting mills, allowing sharmbaa brand to have a collection of “Made in NYC with fabrics made in LA”
LG: Anything else you would like our readers to know about sharmbaa?
AK: The combination of elegant design, sophisticated fabrics, and ethereal drape takes the rigorous practicality of sharmbaa-designed clothing to a high-end luxurious and elegant feeling, ensuring that confident beauty is an ever-present quality of each day. sharmbaa is a fashion brand I founded in 2013.I am now a fashion designer and long-time creative video editor. Drawing on my experience from the digital arts and film world, I am designing innovative, elegant garments that flow and transition seamlessly from one shape to another. The sharmbaa philosophy supports a one-world view which holds sustainability and ethics as core tenets to its business and creative practice. sharmbaa is created in corroboration with environmentally friendly textile companies and factories that treat employees ethically.
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