Stylist Yasmine Eissa On Rocking Ramadan Season With Actress Saba Mubarak & Her Winning Looks In “Suits”
You know how you always want to look your best at Ramadan gatherings. So when it was a birthday party and iftar, all rolled into one, you know my family wasn’t joking around; they had to pull out all the stops with their outfits. Therefore, when I was drinking coffee post-iftar with my aunt when she told me, “You know, this brown suit I am wearing, it’s just like the one Saba Mubarak wore on Suits last night…yup, she’s copying me.” It was art imitating life over at my family gathering or something like that. So to get to the bottom of these fashion trends and latest inspirations, we’ve spoken to the woman behind it all, Yasmine Eissa, the stylist and creative mind of all Mubarak’s fabulous looks.
Eissa, a fashion and celebrity stylist in addition to being a costume designer for media, is one of the most renowned names in the Arab world when it comes to talking fashion. From styling breathtaking red carpet looks for festivals to doing magazine shoots, she’s a true jack of all trades. With her latest project styling your favorite on-screen looks for Mubarak (Farida) on “Suits.” The character that had everyone talking not only because of the richness of the character but also her matching killer wardrobe.
Eissa describes her design style as, “creative” and “outside of the box,” needing her own space to create. Judging the reaction of the audience, she created something that spoke to most women and Eissa surprisingly wasn’t expecting this feedback from so many viewers, “I am very happy that she caught everyone’s eye; I cannot actually believe the feedback, it’s way beyond my imagination. Twitter and everyone are talking about her looks, I guess because it’s also new for Egyptian TV in Ramadan and the character herself being a strong female lawyer.”
Eissa told us about the creative process that went into putting together these looks for Mubarak (Farida) and whether the show “Suits” being an adaptation had any influence on which direction she chose, “I did watch most of the original, I did research on Jessica, the original character, to see the direction; however there’s always an adaptation that you need to work on when it comes to working on an Arab series versus an American one, you need to put into consideration the cultural difference. Also, I did not want it to be simply a copy but rather grasp the vibe of the character.”
From statement coats to form-fitted dresses, Eissa shared her vision when it came to dressing up Farida, “I wanted her to be in character as a lawyer but I didn’t want her to be the typical young lawyer that you see in most series; I wanted her to look and feel the part of a hard-working successful lawyer who has impeccable taste and is super fashionable.”
Farida’s style always complimented her character, a strong woman taking on a predominantly male position while at the same time oozing femininity, the character wore styles that made her flexible and malleable; able to fit anything just like she’s able to fix any situation, “There are certain tones that you follow for the character like she cannot be in striking neon colors all the time, she’s a lawyer and also the interior was very neutral, she can once, but that’s about it. Mostly she needs to be in colors that are in character and also suitable for the location and the set design,” she explained.
Moreover, Eissa explained how she incorporated Farida’s power, confidence, and risk-taking personality through her looks. “I was focusing on using a lot of powerful colors; red is powerful, occasionally I would use orange pants paired with a different color. I used once a green suit but the cut was very powerful. So I focus on powerful cuts and colors as much as possible.” Eissa stressed that it wasn’t that easy in dressing up the character, she has to consider set design as well as what the other characters are wearing so as to have harmony on camera.
When asked about her favorite Farida looks, Eissa said, “There was a flashback scene that I loved, there were two Saint Laurent suits that were very cool; there was another one by Manza, an Egyptian brand, and another one by Farah Seif an Egyptian brand as well that I loved.”
With a diverse experience in the entertainment industry, we just had to find out what it was like working on a Ramadan show versus an ad.”It’s very different actually, but because I do a lot of ads, shoots, and campaigns, I am used to this on-set life, the location lifestyle. But in Ramadan, it’s a little bit different because it’s hectic, the schedule is a disaster and you have several outfits a day and you have to be on the run. Maybe a more laid-back show, outside the Ramadan season would be less hectic, but in Ramadan, the tight schedule is just very challenging.”
Eissa wouldn’t reveal all her upcoming surprises but we did manage to get her to tell us that May will be a fruitful month for the stylist, “I am working on a couple of shoots and covers, they’ll be out in May… I have three shoots coming out, I will just say Vogue, that’s all I can say.”
We don’t know about you, but this conversation and Eissa have definitely inspired us to put on a suit, even if we’re just going groceries shopping.
WE SAID THIS: How do you describe your power suit?