Coming from a rather conservative community in Malindi, most especially ladies from the Swahili community are “confined” from being stylish and keeping up with trend unless attending weddings. This has made ASSY aspire to change how our community sees fashion. She has started a journey to become a fashion icon.
Who is Assy?
My name is Asfat Ali AbdulRazaq. My friends prefer calling me Assy, they feel it is much easier. I guess I can say it is Sassy too. I am a student in a Fashion school based in Nairobi where am pursuing a fashion and styling Course.
Tell us about your education
I went to Town Primary school (Panju) in Malindi for Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE). Afterward, I went to Maragua for my High school studies. My stay at Maragua was an eye opener as I interacted with people from different parts of Kenya. It made me appreciate my hometown, Malindi.
A Business Management course at the Kenya Institute of Management (KIM) in Nakuru followed. After the course, I deviated into fashion.
Fashion defines Life. In fact, it defines our everyday lifestyle and tells who we are within. Fashion gives me the ability to add essence and make the world a more beautiful place.
My goal in fashion is to empower women. I would like to make changes in our society. I come from a society where you don’t have to look nice unless you a going to a wedding. It will be through my fashion statements that young girls will be urged to step up and strive for independence, socially and economically.
Aint you afraid to be branded negatively?
It is a challenge that I have anticipated. But, I will try to blend my inspirations and culture so that I don’t deviate from culture. You know Muacha mila ni mtumwa (He who leaves his traditions /culture is a slave – Swahili Proverb). Decency will be a key component of my fashion.
Who inspires you?
Valentino. He is a designer based in Rome. What inspires me the most is his floral designs. Locally, there is Wambui Mukenya a designer too here in Kenya.
My family was reluctant with my switch to fashion at first. But, after seeing my interests as well as the ability, they fully support me now. I understand as parents investing in one kind of education while having someone end up in another field.
When are your products hitting the market?
Honestly, my time has been limited at the moment. I have put all my focus into school at the moment. However, I am looking forward to sharpening my skills when it comes to marketing. I am planning to have a photoshoot for my product later this year. Once that is done, my products will be hitting the market hard.
Youth and unemployment, what can you say?
It is so sad, but all in all, we have to strive as the youth to have our own hustle as if possible a side hustle too, you never know…
Sitting back and waiting for employment is a hard thing course we don’t know of tomorrow. I know self-employment sounds risky but taking risks and trying to pay in a way.
Check her out on Instagram