Monday, March 9, 2009

Your 10 questions-Thanks to Datuk Farah Khan,President of The Melium Group

Thank you so much to Datuk Farah Khan for answering my questions. I really appreciate it. She inspired me to dream BIG!

Your 10 questions

Local fashion entrepreneur/guru Datuk Farah Khan takes on questions from fashion and lifestyle to business from readers.

1.What are the cardinal rules for dressing to suit your body shape? – Bulbir Singh, Seremban

There is an endless variety of books that give you regular tips on this. Personally, I would suggest you refer to popular magazines and study the looks that suit your own taste. Tear out the sheets and carry them in your bag. Together with a friend whose taste and style you respect, you will find similar products at large-scale brand stores. Try them on and play around with the styling and proportions as these are ways to wear what you like and discover what suits your figure. Ultimately, dressing is an expression of yourself. Always reinterpret what you like and what you see on screen and in reading references into a style that exudes your personality.

2. At what age did you get interested in business and have you always wanted a career in fashion? – Sharimar, Kuala Lumpur
Local fashion entrepreneur/ guru Datuk Farah Khan takes on questions from fashion and lifestyle to business from readers

At the age of 8, I was already seriously interested in business, fashion and food. I had a lot of local and international exposure. My parents were in business. My favourite friend was a Barbie doll and my mum loved food and cooking. All of these have shaped who I am today.

3. My 12 year old daughter aspires to be the next Farah Khan, but people say it would be easier if she were from a wealthy family. What’s your advice? – Edd, Penang

Teach her that the two most important possessions are confidence and compassion. You can develop her confidence with your guidance, educating her and exposing her to anything and everything. Drive her towards any good opportunity that comes along. At 12 years old, encourage her to do a lot of research. The Internet gives you so much information for free. Talk to her about her findings. Follow her interests. Learn the chosen subjects well. Money certainly helps, but not everyone has it and it is certainly not everything. I suggest she later works in an established and reliable company to gain experience, to find her niche and hone her skills. Life is one transition to another.

4.In business, we often face obstacles. How do you motivate yourself and regain the momentum when facing challenges?– Sarah, Seremban

Challenges are a part of daily life. I consider and think about them deeply before making any serious decision. I am rather practical. I don’t do anything hastily. I am very motivated and challenged by my colleagues and friends. I think of others and this is seriously a great motivation. Everyday I choose to live my life in a way that is meaningful to me. I understand the opportunities I have been blessed with.

5.Do you think the sales of luxury brands can be sustained during these hard times? – Selene, PJ
There is certainly a downturn in the economy. Our industry is not spared. However, people continue to buy, but in a more considered manner. Our fashion buyers order items which are: (1) more practical or (2) exceptional collectible must-haves. We are the entertainment of daily life. Most people realise that The Melium is where one can reap enjoyment. Something beautiful and meaningful bought lasts a lifetime of pleasure and appreciation. This is the world of luxury that I love.

6.You’re the creative director of the Farah Khan label. How involved are you in terms of design? Who is your muse/inspiration for the collections? – Melissa, Penang

As the creative director, I steer the way for the entire look and feel of the brand – from the research of pattern and design to the cut and materials. When I started the label, I used to design the collection completely, but since last season, I have the opportunity of having two designers to assist me. The Farah Khan brand is about glamorous wearability. Put one on and you will feel like a goddess of style instantly. I am inspired by celebrities and my best gal pals, which is why each dress is given a name.

7.What or who gave you the determination and push to start The Melium Group? – Riz, Malacca
The Melium Group was started from a passion for things that I enjoy – business, fashion and food. I was lucky to be able to follow it through. I commit thoroughly to achieving my goals. There have been extremely challenging incidents and hard times, but we overcome it by adapting with workable and innovative strategies, staying the course and moving on when the storm has cleared. The important thing now is sustainability, the need to reengineer and do things differently, both in a personal and work context. Life changes with the times.

8.Of all the brands under The Melium Group, which is your favourite, apart from the Farah Khan label? – Jarrad, Petaling Jaya

I don’t have a favourite brand. What I love most about Melium is its diverse portfolio of brands. This was done selectively and intentionally. Each of the brands we carry develops its own following.
We must not forget the food and beverage division of our Group. Our F&B brands – DOME Café, YO! Sushi and Aseana CaféBar – all together make up a total of 20 outlets.

9.Is fashion serious business? Has anyone implied to you that the industry is less important than, say, shipping or banking? – Mindy, Subang Jaya

Absolutely serious! The luxury brands’ turnover last year was estimated at US$220bil, and is expected to increase up to US$450bil by 2012 – and this is only the fashion category in the luxury business. Shipping and banking are necessities of living. Fashion is the emotion that makes life colourful and playful. It is to be enjoyed.

Every business has its own importance. Fashion has its own history and shapes its own future. It is a universal subject that binds different nationalities and cultures together. It is highly sought after by any realised individual who understands and accepts what it can do for them. Dressing and presenting yourself well helps in making an impact and your personality shines immediately. This has shaped the fashion industry at all levels. If you look at the history of fashion, you will see that there is a look that expresses the sentiment of each passage in time.

10.What are the glamorous and the not-so-glamorous sides of the job? Is it all parties and fun? – Casper, Damansara Utama

This job appears all glamorous. The front-row seats at the Milan and Paris fashion shows. The exceptional events. The celebrities, the luxuries, the delicious brief conversations with highly alluring individuals. The buck stops here! The dedication to the industry is far and deep. The work is hard. The hours are long. The people are not always fair. The industry is a highly interesting but complicated and competitive one. I adore fashion and I love business. I have dedicated a huge part of my life to my work. I will do it as much as I continue to enjoy the journey. The day-to-day commitment and hard work behind the scenes are extremely far from what it appears to be. But the results are gratifying and what keep us going. It’s not that different from show business.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Inspiring answers !

* I have prepare the step by step of Thinking Batik. Wonder if you like to read them ...

Copy the whole thing and enlarge the images in Word Program.

I hope you can do out a simple art piece soon by that method.