Fashion Central interviews Hiba Nadeem, exclusive fashion buyer and COO of luxury boutique Men’s Store. A retail space that pioneered the inclusion of western designer brands in Pakistan, the boutique exclusively represents some of the world’s most coveted labels including Gucci, Christian Dior, Dolce & Gabbana, Canali and most recently introduced ETRO in Pakistan.
Born and bred in Europe, Hiba travels to fashion destinations such as Milan, Paris and London to select pieces and collections off the runway two or three times a season. She ensures that us Pakistanis get the pick of each season and that the pieces are contemporary yet wearable keeping in mind the eastern audience.
Today we talk exclusively to Hiba and find out what there is to know about fashion.
1. How did the opportunity for you to become the Fashion Buyer for Men’s Store come about?
I believe we create opportunities for ourselves, and then follow through with deliverables.
2. Are you involved with the just the buying aspect of the business?
Good question. I am the buyer for the Mens Store however I am also the COO so I manage the overall business.
3. How do you feel your education has helped you in your line of work?
I get asked this question a lot, our experiences educate us and for me practical work experience across the board is imperative to truly understand the needs of any professional environment.
4. You get to travel a lot, which is your favourite destination for fashion retail?
I don’t want to sound boring but my favourite destination is the buying showrooms whether it is Milan, Paris, Hong Kong…etc
5. Compared to the West, Pakistan is a different market altogether, what do you keep in mind when buying pieces for Pakistanis?
It’s a good question, generally the core collection remains more or less identical to the West, the restrictions that come are with the ‘high fashion’ pieces where cultural and climate constraints are considered. However buying trends do differ between provinces which I find very interesting which allows me to be play more so with the collections.
6. Is it difficult sometimes picking up western accessories and clothes for a Pakistani audience?
Not really, once basic buying patterns are understood the creative aspect of buying kicks in (which is the exciting part!)
7. What is the criteria you use to select a collection for an upcoming season. Do tell us with regard to autumn/winter 09 specifically?
Well, climate dictates the weight of the collection particularly for autumn/winter. The rest is truly dependant on the designer’s collection itself and the direction for that particular season. so this to autumn/winter 09 is rather ‘sober’ with multiple accents of warm berry shades – its important to remember that ‘fashion’ is expression and the essence reflects what concerns us within the time that we live in.
8. Which accessory do you think will be the rage this season?
The structured jacket, trench and blazer. Think about its form and construction and relate it to my previous answer.
9. Name two essential wardrobe accessories for men and women keeping the season in mind?
So for my lovely ladies – keep a look for Gucci’s timeless handbags this coming season, trust me. Once you see this collection, it will speak for itself.
Trendy Guys – double breasted peak lapel tailored suit all the way, navy and grey dominates the season with regards to formals.
The 2nd accessory for men and women that I wouldn’t be seen without is the ever so classic Ray-Ban Wayfarer- the perfect addition to any outfit!
10. Is Men’s Store planning to introduce any new brands this season?
Rock and Republic! One of my favourite denim brand and there’s more! The launch of our new beauty division with the hottest niche skincare, makeup and fragrances which we are all really excited about!
11. How is your experience been so far working with Men’s Store and its team?
We are a team, and I believe that teams make better decisions than individuals; we have successfully created an innovative, progressive and responsible environment that evolves as we do.
12. Where do you see yourself ten years from now?
The Sky is the limit. What do you think?
Fashion Central interviews Hiba Nadeem, exclusive fashion buyer and COO of luxury boutique Mens Store. I am the buyer for the Mens Store however I am also the COO so I manage the overall business.