In Our first post, I want to talk about the real reason that I get inspired. As Co-founder and Designer at Lihiya, one of the most difficult things is to get inspired. Life, time and resources can limit how you draw inspiration to design well, to design and produce items that resonate with current trends but still voice your own personal aesthetic and reflect your truth and the reason you simply wake up every morning and go to bed on time. I still remember my first international show in London 2015, I remember what inspired it, the fabrics and the book that led to the best selling dress of that season. I named that collection “Blend”.
It was inspired by love of textiles and how they can interpret a moment in history, a special moment in time. When I was working on the 2015 Africa Fashion Week London Collection, I had been reading a book about a man named Lazarus and How Jesus raised him from the Dead. I find that Designers are sometimes more inspired by death more than life. Sometimes death awakens a curiosity to be innovative and creative. Most of Humanity’s horizons in technology has been used to simply fight death and prolong life. It’s not that one fears death it’s just that death brings inspiration to live and to design for life giving experiences.
While I read this book, I thought about the women in the historical setting, how they lived life and the textiles they needed to wear in order to maintain their status and wealth. I had also been listening to a song that I eventually used for my “Runway Show” in London. " I’m No Longer a Slave to Fear” By Jonathan and Melissa Hassler.
The song is about life the meaning of life.While working on my collection, I pondered on the Juxtaposition of the two, Life and Death. I was reminded not to be a slave to these fears, but to remember that Life is creative, life awakens your senses, and communion with our maker and others. Humans were created to prolong life not to await it’s death. I think at times thats the core of Design to prolong life through textiles, technology and medicine. Just a few weeks ago I attended an exhibition, by a famous Taiwanese Gospel singer named SiEn Vanessa. My Heart was specifically drawn to one painting titled “No Longer Slaves to Fear”. It was the painting that gave me absolute peace. I was amazed at how one song can not only inspire a collection but can also inspire an artist and musician. I hope 2018 can be year we remember not to live life in fear. But to know that death does not await us, but only life.