With a sculptural, almost art deco aesthetic, L’AFSHAR is delighting those drawn to geometric forms, clean lines and a sense of place. With the East-meets-West mentality of founder and designer, Lilian Afshar, the Dubai designed and made jewel-like box clutches lean toward the architectural, thoughtfully cast to evoke natural materials, such as of-the-moment marble, precious stone and crystal.
Afshar, who resides in Dubai but is ancestrally from Iran, has also lived in London, Vancouver and Marbella and the designer draws on these travels and experiences as inspiration for her distinctive designs. She works closely with her manufactures in Dubai to produce unique, unseen designs handcrafted from acrylic each season.
For Autumn/Winter 2015, L’AFSHAR takes inspiration from the iconic work of painter Francis Bacon to create a collection of darkly sophisticated accessories in the designer’s signature ‘box clutch’ style. Echoing the contrasting hues of Francis Bacon’s Triptych – August 1972, designer Lilian Afshar builds on the popularity of the marbled pattern from previous seasons, and reinvents the effect in jet black, stormy grey, pastel lilac and pistachio green. The marble effect, made by swirling two colours together while the resin is still in a liquid state, creates a stunningly sophisticated effect on the finished clutch, with every piece having its own unique pattern.
Utterly enthralled, Made Journal spoke to Lilian Afshar about her eponymous brand.
Please tell us about your L’AFSHAR?
A deep exploration of textures, taking non-traditional surfaces and materials, and transforming them into wearable pieces.
Are your clutches designed & made in the UAE?
Yes they are both designed, handmade in Dubai and all our marble sheets are also cast in-house in the factory.
They are stunning and utterly unique, how did you come to using the materials you’re renowned for rather than traditional textiles?
Thank you. I really wanted to offer innovative pieces, something that stands out, something progressive yet wearable.
Have you always been drawn to accessories’ design?
I never thought that I would end up doing accessories, especially clutches. I always had a strong fascination with footwear and textiles but I ended up studying Fashion Design and Pattern drafting and here I am designing clutches.
What’s inspiring you at present as you think about your next collection?
After a recent trip to Hong Kong, I fell in love with the clash between the pastel coloured housing estates and the futuristic glass skyscrapers. That’s definitely an inspiration that I’ll be incorporating into the next collection. Stay tuned!