At the age of nine, Libyan stylist Amjad Khalil’s passion for fashion and design began when he collected leftover fabrics from an upholstery shop near his home and used them to make clothes for elementary school theater students. His models were then admired by teachers and parents. The years passed and in Amjad’s heart the love for design was born, so he chose it as a profession, after graduating for the first time at university, receiving a bachelor’s degree in business administration. After that, he decided to return to the world of creativity, to study in 2010, fashion design in London. We met him in the meeting “Madam” with him.
We went into the details of your beginnings in the fashion world.
My real beginnings in the field of fashion design were in 2012. I opened a very small and simple boutique, for bridal dresses that have been designed by me. Within a year, I proved my worth and my name in Libya, and in Tripoli in particular, became one of the important names, as my designs were admired by all the high Libyan families, including the wives of politicians and the wives of important businessmen.
Who is Amjad Khalil?
I am simple, combative, passionate about fashion and business, and lovers of colors and nature. I am also generally calm, though sometimes I am nervous. In fact, my mood is my main inspiration.
How would you describe the fashion scene in the Arab world?
The Arab world has become a source of inspiration for many international stylists and has turned into a huge trade market that attracts the whole world, as evidenced by the fact that today’s celebrities wear designs by Arab stylists in major forums and festivals. I am very much influenced by the stylist Elie Saab and consider him my model in the Arab world because I am a big fan of his designs and his war history that every novice in the field of fashion follows.
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For soft and strong women
What are the details of the last set you designed?
My latest collection is titled Power of Goodbye and consists of 16 dresses, through which I addressed the strong and courageous lady who seeks renewal and who can be easily relieved of any problem that may pass. Several colors were used, ranging from strong to soft. Like the personality of a woman who can be gentle and full of femininity, and at the same time strong, rebellious and independent.
Do you prefer high fashion or ready-made dresses?
Of course, high fashion, I like high-end events, red carpet events and festivals in which women wear this kind of fashion, and I also like bridal dresses. I feel very happy when I see the bride celebrating her wedding day, she is wearing one of my designs … I really feel that I am part of this happiness and this feeling is invaluable.
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A fusion of classic and modern
Do you like classic or modern design?
I prefer the combination of classic with modern, especially in high fashion. Having the ability to combine both is the most convenient thing. Take for example a fabric like classic brocade, from which we can make a modern design, so that a twenty year old girl can wear it. Herein lies the strength and ingenuity of the stylist in mixing the two together.
Where do you get your designs from?
My state of mind and my psychological state are the key to my inspiration, and the woman’s personality is another source of my thoughts, in addition to trips and visits to museums, architecture and inscriptions in particular.
Do your Arab roots inspire you? Are you?
Of course, the Arab culture and history is very full of special details and inscriptions. For example, the Libyan city of Ghadames, which is called the Pearl of the Desert, is the oldest inhabited desert city and is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This city is inspiring and I think one day it will be the inspiration for one of my collections.
Are you inspired by travel?
Of course, I especially love Paris, this charming city, with its buildings and architecture that inspires me a lot. I love the night too.
what is the last book you read?
I usually like detective novels. But recently I read the book “Social Contract” by the French philosopher Jean-Jacques Rousseau. I like it a lot.
Who is your icon?
Who is your favorite stylist?
Elie Saab at the Arab level, and Oscar de la Renta globally.
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Who is Amjad Khalil’s wife?
I always try for every woman to be able to wear Amjad Khalil’s designs and this equation is very difficult, especially since my dresses are very expensive but this is what I strive for. I also try to have a part of my design present in the wardrobe of all women, regardless of their social level.
How do you reflect the style of oriental women through your designs?
Usually, Arab women, especially Libyans, do not wear very bold and revealing designs, so I try to always be bold in an elegant and not vulgar way. To adapt to the Arab community.
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Do you rely on social media to market your brand and models?
Yes, of course. Social media is one of the most important marketing elements in the present time, and it makes my business reach all over the world, whether through Instagram or the website.
Where can we find your models in the Middle East?
You can find my designs in my studio in Tripoli, Libya and soon we are looking to open branches in Egypt, Istanbul and Paris.
What are your plans for the future?
To have the brand present in all fashion capitals, to expand our productivity and to have more than one fashion line, such as entry into the field of ready-made clothing.
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