Growing up, Sharmin Rahman, Associate Vice President – Creative at Asiatic JWT, always had a passion for fashion designing. From an early age, she embarked on a journey to create beautiful clothes by working with a local boutique for over a decade. Having friends and family who are actively part of the media, designing clothing has been an integral part of her life. Recently, she presented a Jamdani collection in Paris at Première Vision, one of the most prestigious international fashion and textile shows across the globe.
For the exhibition, she collaborated with Living Blue, a cooperative initiated by CARE Bangladesh which encompasses an entire production chain of artisans, beginning with those cultivating indigo from indigenously-grown indigofera tinctoria. The organisation also contributes to the economic and social development of remote zones of Rangpur in Northern Bangladesh.
An avid Bengali at heart, Sharmin thinks highly of our local crafts and materials. “Bibi Russell once told me that fabrics are one of the most integral parts of Bangladesh’s history and culture. We should be proud of the different fabrics that come from our country,” says Sharmin. “Bearing that in mind, one of my prime goals as a designer has always been to promote the crafts and fabrics of Bangladesh.” According to Sharmin, working with Living Blue has been an exhilarating experience, and her Jamadani collection at Premiere Vision received an overwhelmingly positive response.
She further spoke about the importance of sustaining the craft that goes behind the production of Bangladeshi fabrics. “Artisans who weave jamdani sarees cannot flourish until and unless there is a proper market and purpose for their products,” she says. “Through the exhibition at Première Vision, I hope we have opened up opportunities for our industry to an international audience.”