|Afiya Bishop, designer of LOUD|
QUICK FACT ABOUT AFIYA: She's not only an accessory designer but also a stylist.
What inspired you to start your own line? I was really wary of seeing women in the same accessories all the time and also going into stores which have a lot of the same jewellery. It was really hard to find anything unique, bold and chic and the few times that I did it was super expensive.
Additionally after I started the
|Afiya Bishop, struts her stuff on the catwalk with Romero Bryan|
How would you describe your accessory line? I would describe Loud by Afiya designs as being fashion forward, chic, loud, unique, bold and affordable. I strive to be different by not having the ordinary jewellery that can be found in stores while keeping my designs affordable; because I understand how it feels to find jewellery that’s unique which you absolutely love but can’t afford. One difference about my accessory line compared to others, is the designs. Even though it’s artistic and unique they are also chic and fashionable which makes it wearable and not too out there or crazy.
Have you ever thought about entering Project Accessory? If no, why not? I am self taught and believe before I enter Project Accessory there are a lot of things I would have to learn. On that show, you have to be able to make every type of accessory including shoes and bags. I make bags for myself and family members but I don’t think I am capable to produce the top quality that I will need to and I have no clue how to make shoes. So I’m not ruling out becoming a contestant on Project Accessory but I am just saying I have a lot to learn before I enter that competition.
What is your biggest achievement so far? My biggest achievement would be my collaboration with British Designer, Romero Bryan, whose designs have been worn by many celebrities such as Kelly Rowland and Alicia Keys to name a few. At
Fashion Weekend 2011, my jewellery were featured with his designs and he even
allowed me to the privilege of walking side by side with him down the
runway which was AMAZING :)
What do you hope to change about the fashion industry in the
Caribbean with your contribution of making
accessories? Perhaps the awareness of local talent within the region,
as well as the integration of resources. I would also like to see an increase
in the availability of material for the craft. I think I have opened up
the minds of people in terms of introducing them to bold jewellery that they
wouldn’t usually purchase or wear and being open to purchasing from a local or
regional designer. I think I have also proved that the Caribbean has much more
to offer than batik or tie dyed stuff and designers in the Caribbean
can and are producing edgy fashionable top quality goods.
Any tips for ladies who over-accessorise? Styling your accessories is really easy. If you are wearing long earrings that pass your jaw you do not need to wear a necklace, if you are wearing a statement necklace you should wear small understated earrings e.g. stud earrings. I personally dislike seeing women with bangles on both hands so that’s a no-no for me. And my ultimate rule for the office with accessorising is, limit yourself to 5 pieces; earrings, a necklace,bangles (4 for the most in the office) or a watch, handbag and a ring.
|Afiya Bishop with British Designer, Romero Bryan at Tobago Fashion Week|
We hope you enjoyed our first "Exclusive Lounge Chit-Chat" feature with Afiya Bishop, view more of her pieces here