The Courier

London Fashion Week showcase for Fatimah’s Angus fashions

Fatimah Hussain at work.

Angus designs will grace the catwalks of London Fashion Week in the latest step along the road to fame for a mum enjoying a meteoric rise in the industry.

Via the remarkable route of Olympic-level equestrianism, Fatimah Hussain from Forfar is riding high with her ARI London label of clothes for young girls created in the diametrically diverse locations of London’s bustling heart, and a building within the shadow of Station Park.

Fatimah, 29, was schooled at Dundee High before pursuing an ambition to be a top level horse rider – a dream which took her to major competition level before it was ended by injury.

As a trainer she maintained her involvement in the equestrian world until around 2012, and following the birth of her daughter Ariana, now four, was inspired to delve into the world of fashion and design as the founder of ARI London.

Her creations have rapidly won admirers across the globe, with the collection being sold in nations including Russia, Dubai, Italy, France and the US.

Fatimah said: “Kids’ clothing be very child-like and I wanted to create something with more maturity, which was fashion-led.

“But I also wanted to develop sustainable fashion, which has a reputation for not being luxury.

“My focus is on sustainable luxury design for girls aged one to eight years old.

“I work with local artisans as well as various charities to empower people to work and design for other designers as well, including some London Fashion Week haute couture labels.

“My focus is on bringing back design and production to the UK, in particular in Scotland where we have a large skilled pool of people who can be empowered to work in design and production.”

Her Forfar base is currently a hive of activity as designs are readied for the London commitments which will showcase ARI to both consumer and trade customers in the middle of next month as the eyes of the world focus on the capital catwalks.

Fatimah said the arrangement of having a London base and another back home in Angus works well, and the fledgling Scots label caught the eye of judges at the London design show at the beginning of this year when it was named as the one to watch in a showcase of emerging talent from across the globe.

“It is a huge opportunity,” said Fatimah, who revealed the reach some of the catwalk kids modelling her designs already have.

“Some of the young models who will be wearing our clothes and just six, seven or eight years old, but already have a million followers on Instagram and are known on the likes of MTV.”