Rima Cherfane, whose innovative use of craftmanship is broadening the definition of couture, talks to 33 MAGAZINE about her mission to expand the label worldwide and outside boundaries of couture by combining tradition and craftsmanship, handwork and modern fabrics.
From T-shirt to Bride, from bedroom to evening, ”RIMA CHERFANE“ is a label that is addressed to the passionate modern women of today. The label is designed to have it all: it will take the woman that wears it through different occasions on a high level of style created to give her a statement appearance and have her remembered anywhere she goes . From Resort to Streetwear couture, from Athleisure to Red Carpet up to Bridal, RIMA CHERFANE, is a bubble that you will enjoy being in.
From the beginning, Rima Cherfane’s signature has been painstaking craftsmanship, but over time her label expanded exponentially. As the designer prepares to expand her label worldwide, she took time to answer few questions in exclusive for us and we love her already.
A TALK WITH RIMA CHERFANE for 33 MAGAZINE
Describe yourself as a designer and how did you start?
I could say that I am a designer with a continuous high sense of self-criticism. I can’t really tell how I started being a designer because that’s the only thing I ever thought about being since I was seven years old, and I worked out my way to it through studies and workshops to a full job.
How do you manage the creativity process exactly?
For me creativity comes from all kind of information I would collect from day to day life. I do follow up fashion trends but I follow up world affairs and foreign politics too as well as the ways of the world, because my woman lives in this world and I have the obligation of dressing her appropriately in order to follow up with her progress.
When did you land your first internship and what was the most valuable thing you learned from this experience?
My first internship was quickly paid. It was right after I graduated in design and pattern making. My first job was to put a drawing and a number on hundreds of pattern envelopes with a lot of dust on. That job made me understand that a drawing comes last in the process of fashion designing. It is very ephemeral if it doesn’t come after a good pattern and at the end of a perfect cycle in the workshop. In fact, a drawing of a fashion collection is only the tip of the iceberg in this industry.
What was your first job out of college, and how did you land that position?
I started out as a fashion designer / assistant to the manager, who was a designer as well. I got this position by a word to mouth, from a client of my future manager , who was a friend of my mother.
What was the biggest rookie mistake you made when just starting out?
I’m not sure I have made mistakes , I am very meticulous and I would hate getting paid for a work not perfectly done. It is an ego issue I guess. Add to the fact that after a week I started sneaking out from home early, to go to work so that my mother stops driving me there and back. She was very protective and I wanted to discover myself.
That responsibility over myself made me more cautious with people i met and the work environment. I didn’t want my parents to worry about me.
What’s the main impact of social media in fashion industry in both ways, fashion buying and brand marketing?
Well, when I started working in this field , there was nothing called social media and marketing. There were only clients and markets and above all of that, there is a woman, somewhere in the world, buying a dress she would feel beautiful in and special. Women are driven by emotions, fashion provides these emotions. A good picture on social media may inspire them but in the end, the verdict comes from the final consumer.
What is your favorite and NON-favorite part about being part of the fashion industry?
My favorite part is the continuous evolution of fashion. It is a product that is always on the move, a true mirror of society.
My non-favorite part is the second side of the coin. It takes a lot of hardship and persistence to stay afloat in the fashion business.
Can you tell us how your brand makes a difference in fashion industry?
RIMA CHERFANE is a label that came out after 25 years in the fashion industry. Its the creme de la creme of all that I learned. I like to think it makes a difference to the woman who buys it. Making a difference is very personal statement.
What do you think is the biggest challenge for a fashion designer?
The biggest challenge for a fashion designer is to make a product that sells , a product that has a long life in the market. It is not just an art expression, it should also be livable and lovable.
Define sustainable concept nowadays in fashion industry in five words .
Sustainable is: lovable, livable, useful, vintage and clever.
How do you think sustainable can play an important role in fashion industry?
With COVID19 lockdown, sustainable clothing are the only true product that will survive. It ripped the fashion industry of all its sparkles and artificial magic.
”Nothing beats an item that lives for ages in your wardrobe. Nothing.”– Rima cherfane
What do you think about the opportunity of selling your collections online nowadays?
I am building my online shop ‘’www.couturerepublic.com”. It’s the way to go if you want your product to be affordable and unique, as well as reachable for everybody.
Imagine that you must write a letter yo your FUTURE SELF. What would you write?
I would tell me to keep on doing what I do as long as it makes me happy.
”Happiness is not for granted.”– rima cherfane