In Conversation With...Aida Đapo Muharemović
Sarvin talks with modern pin-up Aida Dapo Muharemović. Based in Dubai, Adia talks to us about how she creates her stunning editorial content and her predictions on the future fashion industry post-Covid-19.
You have such a specific style and aesthetic in your work, tell us, where did you get the inspiration for this?
I’m just an old soul and it refers to how I view and approach life. It is something I have deep down in my soul and probably thanks to the traditional way I was raised I’ve always been surrounded by vintage-esque things in one way or another. I am a Bosnian war child and I remember those days being a refugee in Germany. My parents had no money, so we always went to flea markets and second-hand shops to buy stuff and clothes. Every weekend we would go to thrift stores together, if not to buy something, then to just look and marvel at what was worn and used in the bygone decades. When it comes to clothing my mother used to always tell me to get quality pieces that would last longer, buy less, choose well and make it last. Transformations are also a part of life. We are constantly being changed by things changing around us. Travel left a massive impact on my life and outlook on living. I developed my own style as well with my special touch to the vintage style clothing. Inspired by travelling, history and different cultures. I shaped my own style throughout all these years, adding traditional pieces to classic vintage, pieces I bought on my travels and spicing it up with some crazy hats.
How have you stayed motivated and creative during the lockdown restrictions in Dubai?
The events this year have impacted us all across the globe, uniting us in common causes. In the past few years, I have been travelling a lot and I have never viewed my home as a creative space. I would come back home from a trip and it was merely a place to rest, read and watch movies. When the weather is nice my natural habit would have been to grab my camera, meet up with friends and get outdoors. So I thought this is the perfect time to slow down and change that, push myself and create magic between my four walls. In the lockdown, I challenged myself to create self-portraiture photography with limited props and space. I wanted to see how far I can go. My biggest motivation is my emotions and thoughts. I love to capture true feelings and visualise my thoughts, make memories and freeze them in my images. Sometimes I feel like my best work only comes when my life is really emotionally intense.
When everything gets turned upside down, it only leads to a better you. I am lucky that I can use my creativity as a way to deal with anxious thoughts. Personally, it’s what is getting me through this situation.
How do you think the fashion industry has shifted during the Covid-19 crisis?
The lockdown has definitely been a wakeup call in the fashion industry worldwide. Consumers are focusing more now on who makes the clothing we wear every day and in what conditions. Sustainability is treating ourselves and our environment as if we are to live on this planet forever. Hopefully, we will look back at this time of isolation and be grateful for all the lessons learnt. We have to look for a new sustainable beginning. May this crisis help us all to reconnect with ourselves. The change is coming.
As a content creator and 'story-teller', what are your predictions for the future of the fashion industry?
I think that people would rather go for quality over quantity, fast fashion pieces will be replaced with more sustainable clothing. The real problem is that far too many clothes are being produced, the world needs better clothes not more clothes.
What is your most favourite country that you have visited and why?
Oh, that’s a difficult question for me. Every place I’ve visited has something unique and beautiful, but what makes a travel experience in a country so special are the experiences and its people. I always remember the quote by Ralph Waldo Emerson saying “Through we travel the world over to find the beautiful, we must carry it with us, or we find it not.” It’s actually so true. After seeing so many popular picturesque destinations such as Italy, Bali, Maldives etc. I was dreaming of seeing the less popular destinations. I visited Iran, Senegal, Kenya, Jordan, Cuba... and these places surprised me in such a positive way. Before my trip to Iran, I remember I’ve got reactions like “but why Iran?”, “what are you going to do there?”, “stay safe, it’s dangerous?!” I will never be influenced by media, I’ll always go, explore beyond stereotypes and prejudices, travel at it’s truest and make up my own opinion. We just have to open our eyes, read, talk and travel. What makes me fall in love with a country are its people and the memories I made that I’ll carry with me for the rest of my life.