Born in Lahore, Pakistan, Aysha Saeed drew on her culture’s practice of getting fashionably dressed for weddings and festivals to influence her clothing line. But when her family first moved to the United States she struggled to fit in until she found confidence and succor in fashion. She saved money from her allowance and her earnings from a part-time job to buy beautiful clothes.
“I wanted to be the best-dressed person in my entire school,” Saeed says. “So I would walk into school looking really fashionable and chic. And when you walk in feeling that
way your confidence grows … and that changed my life and made me feel comfortable in my own skin. What you put on your body is a powerful tool.”
Thus empowered, Saeed went on to study at famous design houses in Milan and came back to start her new clothing label and her boutique in New York. AYSHA NY focuses on sustainability and styles that are timeless.
“They will be with you today and five years from now, because these are not clothes that you throw away because they go out of style,” Saeed says. Her new collection mixes geometrical patterns with print and velour and chiffon pants and dresses, and masculine and feminine elements, to give it timeless appeal.
During the lockdown, in collaboration with 10 to 12 other suppliers, AYSHA made beautiful “1-2-3” style kits – with a mask, matching scarf and pair of earrings. That is, everything to be Zoom-ready in an instant and keep her business going during the summer of 2020.
For the Fall 2020 collection, AYSHA launched the “dressing for the now” collection featuring what women needed for the time being. These were crushed velvet velour jogger pants, called the Only Pant, to denote it was the only pant you needed in your wardrobe to get you through any Zoom meeting. These are comfortable but stylish unlike yoga pants. It goes well with a matching T-shirt, puff T-shirt, or blousette. The collection featured velvet fabric in seven jewel tone colors for seven days of the week.
With businesses are starting to open again, Saeed has introduced a “go-with- the-flow” easy breezy collection, because “the time we’re living in has a resort feel to it,” says Saeed. “I want women to wear it in New York and feel like they’re going on vacation, even if they’re not able to travel.”
One favorite is a bloussete – a blouse and a jacket in one. Made with fine chiffon and sporting a zipper front opening, it feels like a jacket, but it is so sheer, you can wear it as a blouse. Importantly, it can be kept in your closet to wear almost all year long.
Well-made, with a lot of detailing and workmanship, they’re designed to be worn often, and mixed and matched to stay with you for a long period of time.
“Her new collection features airy and breezy print dresses to make you feel comfortable and instantly glamorous. This is a summer must-have that will take you from a garden lunch to an evening cocktail. Add instant drama and a splash of pop and color with bold, bright Add instant drama and a splash of pop and color with bold, bright stilettos.” According to Saeed’s advice, be careful how you mix prints and geometrical shapes, but, done properly, it can be magical and most summery.