You have likely heard of N-Duo, the ultra-cool Tblisi-based brand that is making waves with its vintage-inspired, androgynous aesthetic. The brand’s best-selling Meadows dress is fast-becoming a firm favorite amongst the influencer pack – and why shouldn’t it? It is fashion-forward, timeless and comfortable all at once, just ask Instagram's Director of Fashion Partnerships Eva Chen, who has been spotted donning hers on more than one occasion. The emerging brand has recently been picked up by some of the world’s biggest retailers including Farfetch, Selfridges and Browns, reaffirming its status as a label that absolutely needs to be on your radar.
Harper’s BAZAAR Arabia first featured N-Duo back in 2016, when Dubai-based blogger Anum Bashir collaborated with the brand’s Founder and Creative Director Natuka Karkashadze to create a capsule collection. Fast forward three years, and Bashir has now gone on to assume the role of Co-Creative Director with the brand and is actively working alongside Karkashadze to take the label to the next level. N-Duo’s Resort ’20 collection represents Bashir’s first official collection within her new role.
We sat down with Anum Bashir in an exclusive interview to talk about all things N-Duo, her role as Co-Creative Director and to get a first look at the forthcoming Resort ’20 collection.
Harper's BAZAAR Arabia: Your journey with N-Duo started in 2016 when you collaborated with Natuka to develop the 'Boy Meets Girl' capsule. Can you tell us a little bit about that experience?
Anum Bashir: The experience was such a wonderful mix of educational, stressful and exciting all at the same time. Being able to design clothes was a childhood dream of mine and I always feared that it would fall to the wayside until the opportunity to collaborate with Natuka presented itself in 2016. We shared similar goals and visions for the brand – the collaboration sparked some lifelong friendships!
Harper's BAZAAR Arabia: You are now Co-Creative Director of N-Duo, how did that happen?
Anum Bashir: It was quite a natural transition. I loved being involved with N-Duo and the team reciprocated my admiration, always taking my insights and input into consideration. It last year whilst we were discussing on continuing our collaboration that Natuka and I both realized that we loved working together and were in this for the long haul. That’s how we ended up becoming Co-Creative Directors.
Harper's BAZAAR Arabia: How do you manage to work together living in different cities?
Anum Bashir: Living in different cities can be challenging, but Natuka and I share a similar methodology and vision which makes things easier. Although I cannot physically be involved in N-Duo’s day-to-day operations in Tblisi, I am fully entrenched in pretty much all other aspects of the business from fabric selection and design development to marketing strategy and budget. Needless to say, our Whatsapp group is constantly buzzing!
Harper's BAZAAR Arabia: How would you say that N-Duo has changed since you have come on board?
Anum Bashir: I feel that we have worked to develop a more robust brand DNA and aesthetic overall and our seasonal collections have expanded. My input has facilitated industry relationships to boost visibility and I am proud to say that N-Duo is now stocked globally with retailers such as Selfridges, Brown’s, Shopbop and Farfetch stocking key pieces from our collections.
Harper's BAZAAR Arabia: Who is the N-Duo woman?
Anum Bashir: She is confident, empowered, flirty and feminine all at once! She loves bold silhouettes and sartorial experimentation. She's extremely feminine, but loves dappling in her masculine side as well and can rock an oversized suit just as well as slinky slip dress.
Harper's BAZAAR Arabia:Can you tell us a little bit about the the inspiration behind the brand’s Resort ‘20 collection?
Anum Bashir: N-Duo’s signature aesthetic is becoming more eclectic every season. Our brand ethos is “buy once, wear forever”, we look to design pieces that our clients will reach for season after season. In Resort ‘20 we continue to play with interesting fabrics, patterns and silhouettes to create a comprehensive, easy-to-wear collection which includes everything from suits and slip dresses to capes and dresses.
Harper's BAZAAR Arabia: What can we expect to see next from the brand?
Anum Bashir: We have a lot of exciting things lined up! Sustainability and accessibility are two values you will see N-Duo embracing more as we expand. Oh, and we are working on seeing some of our fave celebs wearing N-Duo in LA – fingers crossed!