Many people find identity in their clothing and follow the latest from the fashion industry. Fashion is a billion-dollar industry and the fourth largest industry in the world. As we all learned from The Devil Wears Prada, fashion touches our lives whether we realize it or not.
Musician Jalal sees the far-reaching influence fashion can have and is all about melding the pretty with the practical. That was his goal with Aria Noir, apparel by designers — for designers.
Quality Over Quantity in the Face of Fast Fashion
The fashion industry has always had a bit of a seedy underbelly when it comes to getting cutting-edge designs to the masses quickly and cheaply. Deemed “fast fashion”, this phenomenon has grown in popularity in the age of online shopping. Industrialization and consumerism have allowed fast fashion to grow and fester. Designers interested in quality items that showcase artistry have battled to be heard above the din of people clamoring for quick and cheap clothing.
The irreverence of this “throwaway” culture comes at a cost, namely the environment. As fast fashion companies found a way to bring the runway to the bargain bin, the environmental implication of overseas factories pumping out cheap wares was apparent early on.
Aria Noir’s designs are conspicuously imbibed with quality and creativity and seek to be a pushback against the wave of fast fashion literally washing up on shores worldwide.
Passion for the Creative Process
Through his work in the music industry, Jalal has explored his obvious passion for the creative process. He has expanded this passion to the designer fashion industry.
“My favorite part of the creative process is the final product,” Jalal told Artist Weekly, “It’s like giving birth to something that didn’t exist before, and now it does because of me. And it’s even better when someone else acknowledges its beauty.”
Jalal’s appreciation for the beauty all around is evident in Aria Noir’s clothing and has earned the label a coterie of rabid fans. These fans appreciate the limited edition nature of Aria Noir’s work. The brand considers its materials, design, and craftsmanship “self-authenticating”.
Starting New and Forging a Path
Jalal is accustomed to starting something new. Born in Damascus, Syria, he immigrated to Montreal, Canada, in 1996. The move required learning new customs, a new language, and a new way of being in the world.
“Coming to a new country, a new world, changed me completely as a person and made me who I am today,” said Jalal.
This story of renewal and learning a different way of life informs Jalal’s work in music and with Aria Noir, which was a complete shift in focus from music, even though it was a creative endeavor. Jalal even struggled with what he considers the “old school” thinking of his parents, who didn’t quite understand the music or fashion world. He even went so far as to hide some of the aspects of his ventures just to avoid causing them to worry.
Staying Relevant Even in Hard Times
Jalal has weathered challenging times, and seems poised to take on the ups-and-downs of the sometimes fickle fashion world. Throughout the pandemic, creative pursuits did not necessarily fall under the “essential” designation. Still, the endurance of creative businesses shows that people look to find beauty even in the most trying times.
“There’s an impulse to look good no matter the season,” says Jalal. Even as people stayed home, events were canceled, and remote work became the norm, the interest in fashion persisted. Retail clothiers saw a 115% increase in sales between March 2020 and the fall of 2021. Aria Noir’s casualwear was perfectly suited for a more relaxed approach to style amid pandemic lifestyle changes.
Aria Noir considers itself designed around “sacred geometry”, patterning themselves after perfection. They currently offer a line of eyewear, logoed sportswear, and easy-luxe essentials designed and built with impeccable quality.
Fast fashion available at the click of a button may be a darker part of the fashion industry. Still, its persistence is not stopping Jalal or Aria Noir from forging ahead with their bigger and better approach.
Going forward, Aria Noir looks to build a foundation of high quality, long-lasting collections, items designed to stay, not throw away. Fast fashion companies have mortality baked into their DNA to keep customers coming back in large numbers. Aria Noir intends on traveling in the opposite direction by staying on the cutting edge of what’s fashionable while still fostering longevity.
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