Winter has begun, and the nostalgia of warmer days has started. Only the best memories will live until the next Sunset.
This month we welcome Claudia Saadeh to our blog. Working for NET-A-PORTER, this beautiful and super stylish fashionista, born in Greece south of Athens near the sea, is half Greek and halfLebanese. Claudia Always wanted to work in fashion, so she moved to London to follow her dream where she studied at the Marangoni institute, graduated with styling degree and as she say: " the rest is history"
When and how did you realise you wanted to work in fashion?
I’m a creative and fashion always felt like a calling to me. It’s incredible how a good outfit can completely shift your thoughts and give you confidence and strength. Or help you feel more accepted, by allowing you to belong (to a group of people or a certain scene or anything). It’s not just clothes, fashion is truly an art form and it has such transformative power.Growing up I always knew I wanted to do something artistic, and fashion was always the answer.
How do you think has the fashion industry evolved during the past 10 years?
There is a lot I can say here but I’m going to outline what I think are the two biggest changes.
Social media is the first. This digital age has given people a voice, and has allowed models, designers, stylists and directors alike to become influencers of their own, to become their own brands. It has also opened up so many opportunities for people to discover each other, meet and work together from all over the world, which is incredible. And I think most importantly, social media has created a more diverse environment. It’s undeniable that the personalities, connections and conversations happening on social media have been an industry-wide catalyst for diversity, and I love to see that.
The second thing is sustainability. There is so much focus on ethical fashion and sustainability in fashion, which was not the case 10 years ago. With climate change and the environmental crisis, this is really important and it’s great to see that designers are paying more and more attention to this. This is championed of course by Stella McCartney who is truly a pioneer in the field of sustainable fashion. I think that people are also shopping more consciously, shopping less and switching to vintage and thrift shopping to help break the cycle. This movement also extends to cruelty-free fashion, with historic fashion houses and corporations having gone fur-free over the past 5 years, which sends a very powerful message of our commitment to a more responsible and sustainable future.
Where do you see yourself professionally in 10 years?
This is a tough question to answer... I hope to still be chasing my dreams, still styling, continuing to work as a consultant with different brands, perhaps start my own. I feel like there’s still a lot for me to explore but I definitely want to keep reaching new heights and new goals.
What has been the highlight of your career so far?
Joining NET-A-PORTER 5 years ago was truly a dream come true for me, so I think that’s definitely up there with my proudest moments. And I’m still so happy to be a part of such a leader in our industry. But another highlight was getting to work on a major shoot with Peter Lindbergh and Anastasia Barbieri one summer during university. It was featuring Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt for Vanity Fair Italia and the Wall Street Journal Magazine. It was absolutely amazing to have been a part of that and to have worked with such icons. Unforgettable.
Your best advice(s) for women who would like to pursue their dream job or to create a brand?
Plan your path and stick to it. You will hit dead-ends and come across obstacles but it’s how you get past those that will push you to success. Network, work hard and keep learning. Patience, persistency and perseverance are the most important qualities.
And one last thing to remember: Don’t get lost or derailed by comparing yourself to others. Everyone has their own path.
What’s your favourite Dondoks model and how do you style it?
My favourite Dondoks shoes are my red and pink ruffled lace-up flats the Frida style - they look just as great dressed up as they do dressed down. I love to wear them with head-to-toe denim or head-to-toe leather just to break the femininity of the pink ruffles, but I also think they look great with a midi dress or skirt for a nice dinner or night out. It depends on my mood!
What is your favourite item you have in your closet?
The first thing that popped to my head was this beautiful Rochas dress that my mother gave me. I haven’t even worn it yet but it’s so special to me and I feel like it’s one of those treasured pieces that will get passed down through the generations.