The saying goes that you should never work with family, however London-based sister blogging duo Thana and Sakhaa Abdul are getting along just fine. Having launched their eponymous blog The Abduls in 2012, the pair has since found Instagram fame and worked alongside some of the biggest brand names in the world including Fendi, Kenzo and Dior. “We got to fly to New York and do an amazing photoshoot with Dior,” Sakhaa tells Bazaar. “That was one of the best things that has happened to us career-wise.” Thana agrees, adding, “Another highlight was when we launched our e-commerce site Coded Nation in May 2016 as a test, only to sell out completely in less than 12 hours.”
Sakhaa says she’s obsessed with Balenciaga, owning roughly around 30 pieces from the brand alone. “It’s my favourite. Whenever it’s a special occasion, that’s where everyone buys my gifts and every time I want to reward myself I get something from there.” For Thana, she treasures a vintage 48-year-old fur coat “that I received when my grandmother passed away”, which she had to fight for. “My eldest aunty really wanted it but my mum had my back so she traded her jewellery in return.”
When it comes to shopping, the sisters are poles apart. “I shop way more often than Thana,” Sakhaa says. “I love Selfridges, Browns and hitting up the boutiques in Marylebone.” Thana concurs, “I don’t shop a lot, in fact I stopped for the past two years as I was trying to minimise my shopping habit and instead focus on buying basics and playing around them.”
The pair grew up around fashion – “our mum had an atelier and we’d go there after school,” Sakhaa explains – and while they look very similar, each has developed their own individual style. Thana describes hers simply as “minimalist” whilst Sakhaa says, “My style screams ’90s chic. I represent the era I was born in and I’m extremely proud of it. I love every colour and shape of checks, and denim, leather and Doc Martens are my go-to items.” As bloggers, the sisters get sent clothes to wear and Thana says that experience has taught her valuable lessons. “One time I wore an outfit that I really didn’t like for an event just to please the designer. I learned that I should’ve spoken my mind and found something that represented me.” Although, Sakhaa says, it’s not just designers they feel the pressure from. “I think that, being stylish, you’re always under pressure with little to no room for error. For example, we can’t show up to a social or family gathering looking ‘okay’, as we’re expected to bring our styling A-game.” Happily, they rise to the challenge.
From left: Sakhaa Abdul wears Ipekyol trousers, Maram top, Sanayi shoes. Thana Abdul wears Max&Co trousers, Maje sweater, Ipekyol blazer and Adidas shoes, all their own. Photography: Ben Sage. Styling: Samah Elmeri. Words: Maddison Glendinning. Fashion assistant: Jordan Grant