A womenswear brand Northern Belle launches first ever collection titled ‘Nuanced’. Creative designer, Salmah Ahmadu is the owner and head of Northern Belle who enjoyed painting and drawing when growing up until she realised she could make an impact in the fashion world through her art, she continues to tell stories through her well-crafted clothes.
This collection was inspired by her growing up as a Muslim in Northern Nigeria with the expectations that naturally every girl or lady lives with. She finds being a ‘lady’ the closest interpretation to this age-old tradition that many of us live with.
She wasn’t allowed to talk in a certain way and always having to sit in a certain, shyness as far as growing up was involved was a virtue that girls from ‘respectable’ homes had to exude.And then as a young woman travelling around, socialising and coming across different cultures; especially the western culture, she was at a loss on how to strike a balance between that which catches her fancy and what she was raised to love and cherish.
The debut collection essentially explores this thematic struggle between the things learned as children, what as adults were seen and what we eventually take as our personal beliefs and standards.
In this collection, she tried to play with the lightness of not trying-at-all on evening wear which is basically what most women lose sleep over. They tried to elevate classic silhouettes with their casual use of twist, drapery and layering to come forth with this. Although simple, the idea is to have each piece exude effortless grace and sophistication.
The woman who this collection is designed for is most importantly a lady. She is polite in life and poised in her doings. Despite being a high social position, she is able to stand back from herself and become aware of the perceptions, values and beliefs around her. Also, she understands that a little bit of grace and a little bit of charm is, in fact, the canniest way to go about life.