I grew up with a lot of creative freedom. My parents were busy setting up Pakistan's first ready-to-wear clothing brand, and as the youngest by far of three sisters, I had plenty of time to myself to do as I pleased. My mother supported all of my ‘projects’ – whether drawing or painting, learning ballet, riding horses or playing tennis. I could dye and cut my hair however I fancied, for instance – a privilege no one else at my school had. I would design my own outfits at my parents’ clothing factory no matter how outlandish they'd turn out to be. I think this gave me a lot of opportunities to learn and explore my creative side but also encouraged me to have interests of my own. I was allowed to make my own mistakes and figure out my interests. I was always into art and fashion but jewellery was an unexpected venture for me.
When I went to Central Saint Martins, I wasn’t sure that this is what I’d be doing. But now, looking back, it makes a lot of sense. I feel that while jewellery may not serve a tangible purpose the way art does, an item worn on the body is still a creative expression for whoever wears it. I'm also fascinated by the mechanisms and technicalities of constructing three-dimensional pieces. I enjoy figuring out how parts are to be put together, the conversations they have with one another, and how they end up functioning. I guess that's an aspect of product design.
Coming back to Lahore was almost a logical part of my journey. It’s had its unique challenges but has been rewarding in a way nowhere else could be. I have the support to do my own thing here and have been able to nurture my creativity relatively freely. It’s also really exciting to introduce new concepts to a place like Pakistan. At the end of the day, I suppose your passport and where your family and support structure are matter a lot when you're setting up your own thing.