Over the past couple of years, Instagram has become a popular hub for talented designers looking to make a name for themselves in the UAE fashion world. But it’s not easy! That’s why Melltoo wants to help up and coming Instagram sellers/designers by giving them a place to shine: our blog and app! When Instapreneurs sign up for an m-boutique on Melltoo they can focus on what they love do most (design) and we’ll hand the rest (promotion, payment and delivery)! Are you an instapreneur? Download the Melltoo app today and enjoy a hassle-free selling experience! In the mean time, learn about the creative UAE-based brand Chi-ka!
1) How did the brand come about?
The brand came about as a result of me and my partner’s fascination with Japan and Japanese culture. It is an incredible country, and an endless source of inspiration. We felt that there are many similarities between Japanese and Arab culture and we wanted to find a way to further unite the two through fashion.
2) How essential is a kimono?
Kimonos are versatile garments that can be worn in a casual or formal way. It’s easy to spice up any outfit by putting on a kimono. It will add a note of glamour and elegance to your look. It is also a useful travel piece, where you can remain modestly covered, but look hip and trendy at the same time.
3) Where are the fabrics manufactured?
The materials are manufactured in Japan, and the kimonos are also hand-crafted there by highly experienced Japanese artists. The material is silk, which is hand-dyed, hand-painted and hand-embroidered. Genuine kimonos are an art form and it take months to complete just one piece. They are one of a kind, exclusive pieces, and the design will never be repeated.
4) Your inspiration?
Japan, always. Their talent for colour and pattern coordination, attention to the finest of details, and strong work ethic. Also, GCC culture – the beauty and boldness of Middle Eastern ladies and their creativity in evolving the standard black abaya. They inspire us regularly.
5) Who do you want to see wearing CHI-KA collection?
Ladies from all around the world. Those that appreciate craftsmanship, attention to detail, and impeccable quality. We hope our kimonos go to those that can truly appreciate them as works of art. A CHI-KA woman has unique taste, she is continuously looking for something original, and when she steps out everybody stares. It takes a bold personality to wear some of our pieces, as they will attract attention. She needs to feel confident enough to carry that off.
6) Your thoughts on pre-loved fashion?
Why not! Though it depends what it is. Kimonos actually have a long tradition of being handed down to the next generation. They are kept for many years. As long as they are cared for properly, it would be an honour for someone to receive. Like most luxury goods, from vintage Chanel, to old-school Rolex’s, they age beautifully, and manage to retain their value and cool-factor.
7) What can we expect to see in the near future?
More gorgeous pure silk kimonos in different colours and patterns, new accessories, and a kids kimono line inshallah.
Want to see more designs from Chi-Ka and fashion in Dubai? Follow their Instagram account @chikacollection and prepare to be amazed!