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My Fashion Diary: Statement style tips & fashion talk with IZAAK AZANEI

IZAAK AZANEI is a contemporary British brand, with a focus on knitwear with fur detailing created by Roshni Khemlani Mehta and her two sisters, Karishma & Deeya, in 2014. Their concept was to create an aspirational and relevant fur brand, more catered to the versatile demands of the cosmopolitan, on-the-go consumer. We got one-on-one with one of the sisters, Roshni, to get the insides of her brand & the best of her styling tips.

Wearing an IZAAK AZANEI Signature Trim cardigan (picture above)

- What inspired to you start this luxury fur business?

Back in 2012/2013, luxury fur fashion was making a significant comeback on the catwalks, in a way not seen previously. It was contemporary, cool, quirky, full of bold colours and unconfined to outerwear. This spurred a desire to explore a material that we’ve always had a deep affiliation with, ever since we were little girls and holidayed across Europe in our Christmas holidays. We wanted to create something timeless yet still relevant, within a world of ever-changing trends. Pieces that can be easily styles across so many different outfits, different ages of women, made with high quality materials yet reasonably affordable.

- Describe your style. Comfortable or trendy?

Whilst our styles differ as sisters, I think the common thread that unites our style is a desire to blend casual, contemporary staples with trend items.

- Your number one outfit from your wardrobe?

My go-to outfit is usually a pair of distressed denim jeans or cashmere sweats, with a simple white or grey tee, a statement leather jacket, sneakers or ankle boots, with our cashmere/merino trim scarf layered on top. I love to layer!

- What’s your ideal day outfit?

I spend most of my day at work, so I like to be reasonably comfortable. I think being comfortable and on trend is totally achievable, with the help of a few statement wardrobe pieces – mainly jackets, shoes and accessories.

- How do you dress up a simple outfit for an evening/night out?

I think the easiest way to dress up an outfit for the evening is with accessories or simple accents. Fur adds a great accent, and dressing up simple outfits is exactly what we try to do, whilst still creating a look that looks effortless.

- You prefer: Jewelry or Bags? Any styling tips?

I’m definitely more of a bag person than a jewelry person. I love fine Jewelry, but my taste is very classic and once I put something on, I don’t take it off for years. I wear the same bracelets, necklaces and earrings on a daily basis and tend to stick with classic designers for my fine jewelry. I’m more experimental with my accessories, and like to mix emerging and established designers.

Styling tips – add bright accessories to plain colour palettes, layer with outerwear, and don’t be afraid to try out new styles but don’t feel you have to wear something just because it’s in style (not everything is made for everyone).

- How to make an outfit stand out? Anything particular advice?

It very much depends on the colour palate you’re working with. I’m all for using bright bold accessories on top of more neutral/dull shades. I think statement shoes are the easiest way to really dress up an outfit with minimal ease. Shoes and outerwear. I really invest in my outerwear wardrobe – jackets, coats, capes. They completely make up an outfit.

- Your all-time favourite IZAAK AZANEI piece?

The Trim Scarf it’s my ultimate layering piece, which I throw on to almost any outfit – distressed jeans and sneakers, high waist tapered pants with heels and a shirt, evening gowns. It’s versatile, easy and adds a great touch to any outfit. Because the silhouette is quite classic and the base is black, I often opt for the The Black & Pink Trim Scarf, as it adds a bold and playful touch, without overpowering an outfit, as it’s just a pop of color.

- Must-haves for travel from your collection?

Our pieces work very well for travelling, particularly for creating an airport look that is comfy, cozy yet chic. I’m a firm believer that one should always look reasonably smart when travelling which is often hard when you want to stay comfortable. My go-to travel outfit is our cashmere blend Jacquard pants, they work very well with a simple tee or sweater, with a pair of sneakers, and a jacket.

- Where does the inspiration come from for your next collection?

Our next collection for Autumn/Winter 2017 (Collection 5) which we take to Paris next month for AW17 sales, is inspired by Après-Ski. I’m particularly excited about this collection, and we’ve added a few new silhouettes.

- One important styling advice that is a must-do?

Always look presentable. No matter what trend you’re coveting.

- Where do you sell your pieces in Dubai?

We are currently stocked in 30 stores globally, including 7 across the Middle East (Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Kuwait, Beirut). In Dubai, we recently opened a new office and a showroom in JLT, where one can purchase the collection.

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