After venturing into lawn market, model-turned-entrepreneur Vaneeza Ahmed Ali launched her shoe collection. With most of the collection comprising of flats, she catered to a niche market with 30 designs, exhibited at her flagship store at Park Towers on July 18.
Featuring an animal theme with diamantes, Vaneeza Footwear was priced between Rs1,800 and Rs4,000. Though Ali had introduced four to five designs with her lawn collection, this was the first formal launch of her footwear collection.
Talking to The Express Tribune, Ali said: “I wanted to do something different. There are plenty of nice shoes in the market, but what they all lack is comfort. My priority is to give comfort to my customer.”
“I have used Italian and German leather in most of these handmade flats — they are comfortable and wearable. It is just a few designs that I did with rexine, the others are in pure leather,” she added.
Sharing more details about the animal theme, Ali said: “Nobody else was doing it. In diamantes there were flowers all around, all kinds of flowers. We went according to the international fashion forecast where one sees animal prints, animal motifs and animal shoes all beginning from the New York Fashion Week, hence the inspiration.”
The designs feature owls, dragons, leopards, seahorses, fishes and peacocks. The colours ranged from primarily black, deep gold and shimmery silver. “You will soon see that these designs will all be copied and will be available at various other shoes stores,” said Ali.
While Ali is designing and marketing the shoes, her partners are primarily involved in manufacturing and retailing. However, considering the state of business in Karachi being affected by security threats, Ali plans “to shift her business either to Lahore or Sialkot. Avenues abroad are options which are even available, but as far as my business is concerned, this is not an option I would go for”.
With 30 designs already out, Ali plans to introduce more during Ramazan: “The eid collection will be value-added with more stones and the collection will comprise of formal shoes, not funky ones. Hopefully, it will be out in mid-August.”
Around the same time, Ali plans to take her collection to Lahore, Islamabad and Faisalabad. Further extending her brand, Ali is also considering launching a men’s footwear collection.
While Ali has launched “animal shoes”, Anoushey Ashraf , Natasha Qizilbash and Alizeh Ashraf are back with their animal-themed tees. The trio launched 350 designs as part of their Summer Autumn collection at The Forum on July 18.
With the animal theme being a predominant factor in the collection, Qizilbash said, “Previously we have done a theme-based venture on t-shirts depicting owls. Next, we tried our hands at cats. This time, we have Mickey Mouse, the cartoon character, and in animals we have roosters and dogs.”
“People often say that they don’t wear them, but this is what sells the most. People are making statements with animals and hence, it sells the most,” said Anoushey.
With blacks, whites and some neutral colours, the collection also features floral prints and stripes and prices range from Rs1,200 to Rs4,000.
This was Block Seven’s third exhibition in Karachi and the fifth in Pakistan. However, like Ali, the trio is looking forward to launching their flagship store. “Now, I believe we will be opening a store soon. We have experimented a lot with exhibitions; we need to take a step forward,” said Anoushey.