To most people in the fashion industry, he is simply called Bin Ali, a talented Omani photographer turned fashion designer and later on, a proud owner of Bin Ali Designs, an Omani brand that specialises in tailoring sports and fashion outfits and also ventures into embroidering, weaving and stitching.
For Bin Ali, everything is about quality work and he prides in the fact that his brand is highly professional not only in its tailoring but the technical staff who are part of his team.
On the second week of April, he had his fifth fashion show attended by some of the country’s top social media influencers, fashionistas and some of the who’s who of the GCC. Called Futuristic Soul Collection, the fashion show took over Muscat Bay and with the resort’s scenic environment, paraded unique clothing line that showcased the creativity of one of Oman’s budding fashion design talents.
Born Muoiyad Al Rashid al Mughairi, Bin Ali, shared, “I chose the name “Futuristic Soul” [or spirits] because a lot of us has lost trust that the future is something we create. It was inspired by this thought that we can build our future if we believe in ourselves.”
He added, “The collection is made up of shapes, colours and cuttings that reminded me so much about the future. It is my imagination of the future — of how the world will look like.”
As a designer, Bin Ali thinks that it is important to break through the barriers so that we will all be ready to face our collective future.
“We only live once,” he said signifying that we have to make use of the time gifted to us.
“For the collection, my visuals are very unique. I always wanted to create something sporty but fancy at the same time. This is my aesthetic,” he said.
Getting into fashion
Bin Ali said that he started using ‘Bin Ali’ in his business dealings because he wanted to create intrigue. As a photographer and designer, he wanted people to be fascinated by the brand and what it is all about.
“I don’t want to show myself. I wanted people to see this interesting character wherein they may know my name but they don’t fully know who the guy is behind the designs, the brand and the photography. It is my way of keeping people to guess and maintain their interest,” he said.
“I started my photography business in 2013 and from there branch out into fashion and art. I realised that I have a knack for these things and from there, my passion just blossomed,” he said.
“My fashion line started in 2017. I’ve always known that I wanted to become a designer. I breathe fashion and I’m into the nitty-gritty of the industry since I was a kid. Fashion makes me express and showcase the things that are in my imagination. From these imaginations, I love when they become a reality and they come out positively well,” he said.
As a designer, Bin Ali said that he likes breaking the ice and doing things that are out of the box.
“I like taking some risks and expressing my creativity,” he shared.
This is where the Futuristic Soul collection comes from. Composed of 15 pieces for women and 10 pieces for men, it is a mixture of the past and contemporary present — a contradiction — that yielded the futuristic look.
“It is a sporty chic collection mixing sport and high fashion street style. I used plastic fabrics and conjured some creative ideas to mould them to how I wanted them to be,” he said.
“The major challenge was how to create something new and how to sell the story behind the collection. As a designer, part of the job is how to attract people to your brand and I have the feeling and desire that I can create with love what I wanted,” he said.
Imagining the future
Bin Ali said that he loves working with different materials. The challenge is all part of the fun and process.
“I like to mix materials and different fabrics. I like using cotton and leather at the same time — emphasising on that contradiction. I believe that you can mix and create things from nothing,” he said.
He also said that designing female dresses are easier than making male clothes since male clothing has many limitations. There is also a cultural challenge.
“Being realistic about it, you cannot usually go out of the box for men’s clothing. Here in the GCC, we have to be sensitive to our culture,” he said.
Bin Ali shared that he still has many things in store in his arsenal and is excited about the future. His latest collection is a testament to what can be done.
“I see my brand everywhere in GCC,” he shared when he asked how he envisions the future of his brand,
“I want it to become one of the best Arabian-Omani designs. I also wanted to become a popular Omani designer who takes pride in designing for modern individuals but have high regard for Oman and the Arab culture. Ultimately, I wanted to complete my studies in fashion and design,” he said.
For all his success, none of it would have been possible if not for his family.
“I have two brothers and three sisters. My family have supported me since I began my journey to this field and they have not stopped. Even at my latest fashion show, they were there to give their support,” he said.
“My name as an influencer and photographer really helped me in promoting my brand. I am thankful to all the sponsors who made the launching of my collection possible. I hope to continue making what’s in my imagination a reality and I will work towards achieving that,” he said.