Uber talented, Sarah Gandapur is a renowned fashion designer. Sarah has always been attracted to the world of glitz and glamour. She was highly inspired by her mother who helped her in shaping her career in fashion designing. Her father wanted her to become a lawyer, but Sarah opted to study fashion instead. Sarah started her career in 2005 after her graduation in fashion designing from Lahore School of Fashion Design (LSFD). She started an in-house studio and soon established her own label in 2007. She has participated in a number of local and international fashion shows including PFDC Fashion weeks, Bridal Couture weeks, Mauritius Fashion Week, Colombo Fashion Week. She also participated in four fashion weeks in Dubai and India, over the years. She serves both international and domestic clients.
Sarah took a break from the fashion scene for few years and then resumed her work with more vigour and finesse. She collaborated with Kross Kulture in 2022. The brand has introduced a sub-brand ‘New Chapter’ headed by Sarah. Since then, she has come up with three amazing collections. She is currently working on some fresh collections. This week, this stylish designer talks about her love for fashion and shares her beauty secrets with our readers. Read on…
You! What sparked your interest in designing?
Sarah Gandapur: Well, this started from my childhood as my mother was very classy. I was always inspired by her sense of style and fashion. I learned a lot about different types of fabrics, jewellery, stones, from my mother. Later, when I was in senior school, I decided to pursue fashion designing as my profession and joined Lahore School of Fashion Design.
You! How long you have been working as a designer?
SG: I started working while I was studying fashion at school.
You! How has your work evolved since you began your career in fashion designing?
SG: I started my own label as Sarah Gandapur in 2007. I have been designing clothes which are a fusion of modern and ethnic. Then, I ventured into bridal. So, yes, my work has evolved over the years – starting from period costumes to modern attires and from fusion clothes to bridal wear. I also ventured into international market which is a milestone in my career.
You! What is your design philosophy? What type of clothes do you design for women?
SG: My design philosophy is simple – to make affordable, comfortable and wearable clothes. I prefer elegance over boldness. I don’t make revealing clothes.
You! When and where did you show your debut collection?
SG: I got my first big break as a student to design the 18th Century Victorian Era clothes for a famous adaptation of ‘The Phantom of the Opera’ show which turned out to be a complete success. It was part of my graduation thesis. Right after the show, I was approached by ace photographers Ather and Shahzad who wanted to shoot my Victorian Era collection – featuring Reema as the muse. Then a year later, I showed my debut collection at Dubai Fashion Week in 2006.
You! What do you like best about designing clothes?
SG: It gives me freedom to express my creativity.
You! Tell us about your Eid collection?
SG: My Eid collection is a festive collection that you can wear on different occasions – be it Eid, wedding or an engagement party. In my collection, I have played with fresh colours with fine embellishments like gold, silver, beads, sequins and stones.
You! You are also working in collaboration with Kross Kulture, how has your experience been so far?
SG: Actually, I took a break from designing for few years. This is my comeback with Kross Kulture. It has been a wonderful experience. I have already completed 3 collections and working on more.
You! What type of material and fabric do you usually use in your collections? What is your signature embellishment and fabric choice?
SG: It depends on the collection. For my Velvet Rush collection, I obviously used velvet; for my Eid collection, I used soft material. I love to embellish my creations with sequins, tilla work, beads and crystals.
You! What is the one piece of clothing that you shy away from wearing?
SG: A mini backless dress.
You! What is the high point and low point of being a designer?
SG: It gives you a kick when someone wears your clothes; it’s the best part of being a designer. However, there is a downside too. Sometimes, designers compromise their creativity when it comes to sell their products commercially.
You! What colours are you expecting this summer?
SG: Pastels, neutrals, white and beige. Dark tones for evenings like maroons, greens and mustard.
You! Do you think social media has affected fashion over the years?
SG: Of course. Social media now is playing an important role in influencing fashion and sales.
You! What kind of future plans do you foresee for your brand?
SG: For my ongoing collaboration with Kross Kulture, we will continue to provide collections that sell well and carve a niche market for our buyers.
How old you were when you became obsessed with makeup?
I have been fascinated by makeup and fashion since I was a little girl.
What is one cosmetic you cannot do without?
When stepping out, do you wear make up all the time?
I don’t wear makeup all the time but I do use face powder and lip colour when going out.
When it comes to cosmetics, which brands do you usually use?
Estee Lauder, M.A.C, Bobbi Brown, L’Oreal, Maybelline and Cover Girl.
What’s in your beauty bag?
Basic base, face powder, couple of lip colours, eye pencil, blush and perfume.
You go-to lipstick?
Relentlessly Red by M.A.C.
Do you go to salon regularly for your facials?
I am not big on facials but, yes, I go for my HydraFacial every two months.
Your favourite beautician:
Nabila in Karachi and Sagar in Lahore. But I usually do my own makeup.
Your preferred salons:
Toni & Guy, Asma T and Amna Aziz.
Chanel No 5.
Your beauty regimen:
I don’t like heavy foundation. I basically use light moisturiser. I use powder and a bit of colour on the eyes. I like to wear a bright lip colour. I generally don’t wear mascara unless it is needed.
Do you use anti-aging creams?