JAMIL By MD – Where Culture and Elegance Collide

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A combination of South Asian and American cultures, JAMIL By MD infuses Pakistani classic cuts with American sentiment. The result is a matter of opulent style with a meshing of cultures which brings forth Pakinstan´s high fashion allure. Accentuated with embroidery and hand beading, Madiha Dhanani´s collections are filled with statement pieces that captivate the eye and maintain modernity, while staying true to her Pakistani heritage. Though she shys away from the traditional attire most widely known in their eclectic culture, she does include familiar styles tied with American roots, as she herself is both Pakistani and American. She complains of the nature of duality; however, she contrasts the two cultures beautifully against each other for a collection etching itself in raw talent and coming from a place of personal wisdom. Her life´s journey in balancing the two harmoniously, juggling the two all-inclusive identities has worked to her advantage for a noteworthy collection and inclusion in South Asian New York Fashion Week. A natural in the business, Dhanani is just getting started in her career as a fashion designer and so far, there is muh to appreciate. Join us as we get inside the mind of Pakinstani-American style guru JAMIL By MD.

How did you get into the career of a fashion designer?

I started off as a style content creator for about 5+ years and this felt like a natural next step.

Did you always love fashion?

I’ve loved fashion for as long as I can remember. However, my obsession with fashion grew dramatically in the last 10 years. 

What is the most enjoyable part of being a fashion designer?

Seeing your designs come to life and testing your creativity. 

Do you have any other interests outside of fashion?

I’m an adrenaline junkie that loves to travel. I’ve also dabbled with photography as well and hope to expand my skills as a hobby.

What inspires your silhouettes?

My South Asian background of being Pakistani fused with my American upbringing along with my own personal style. 

How do you choose your fabrics? 

I’ll have an idea of what fabric I will want to use and then it’s trial and error from there. It can take several different swatches of fabrics and samples before we can settle on fabric [for each piece].

What materials do you usually work with? How does this represent South Asian (& American) fashion?

It’s not as much with the materials as it is our cuts, styles, embroidery, etc. that help represent South Asian (& American) fashion. I prefer to keep the materials as “modern” as possible and what feel authentic to JAMIL. However, through subtle hints of embroidery, hand beading/sowing, or design styles is where culture is incorporated. 

Tell us about how your dual Pakistani/American culture impacts your designs.

Pakistani and American fashion have played a significant role in my upbringing. Whether it’s been styling traditional Pakistani fashion for weddings or street style for fashion week, I wanted to start meshing my two worlds together through curated collections.

Describe your experience at South Asian New York Fashion Week.

It was my first time working and presenting a full collection and it felt like the perfect platform to showcase our SS24 collection on. Representing South Asian fashion in New York. I was extremely nervous as JAMIL was not even a year old at the time. It was one of the most challenging experiences we had that year and one I’ll never forget. 

What can we expect from JAMIL By MD in the future?

We hope to be consistent with two new collections a year along with expanding into different product categories. 

Where are you looking to take your brand?

As cliche as it sounds, I’m looking to take it to the next level. I’d love to see JAMIL carried by different retailers across the U.S. and globally.

What can you highlight from the upcoming SS24 collection?

The saree gown is my personal and also seems to be a crowd favorite.

Who are you designing for?

Anyone my designs identify and resonate with really. If I had to narrow it down, the modern and forward-thinking woman. 

When can we expect to see the collection on JAMIL By MD?

GENESIS will be available online by the end of February.

Photography Credit: Hosein DL


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