Meet Leila Abo Tira , founder of Egyptian label ALIEL

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Egyptian designer Leila Abo Tira founded her label ALIEL (Leila spelled backwards) 4 years ago, sharing different stories through art and unique designs.
Inspiring women around the world, Kylie Jenner included, the brand just released their latest collection ASEELA (“authentic” in Arabic) which already sold out on their website. JDEED was curious to know more about the designer behind the blossoming label.

Hello Leila! Can you tell us what pushed you to launch ALIEL and how has this journey been so far?

ALIEL’s story started when I was 7 years old. Every summer I used to design accessories and go sell them at the beach, and I’d come back home with not a single product left.
Since then, I knew that designing, putting pieces together, creating, and innovating was my thing. My dad is a fashion designer and an artist who has been in the leather manufacturing industry for decades. I used to go with him to the factory and see raw materials turned into actual products which gave me a good eye when it comes to details and finishing. My first attempts at design and branding started when I was a teenager while in high school in 2009; I decided to create my brand of handbags called “Leila Designs”. The brand developed to what is now known as “ALIEL” which is my name spelled backward.
Starting ALIEL was a gateway to bring to life my creative imagination through artistic pieces. Our vision is to empower and inspire women through our art. The journey so far has been a blessing and I honestly wouldn’t trade it for the world!

The brand is based in Cairo – How does the city inspire you?

Cairo for me has been a place of empowerment but also challenges. I can see myself inspired by Cairo in every bag and concept I create. They all aim to empower women which is something we must embrace more in our culture.

ASEELA, your latest collection, which means authentic in Arabic, celebrates the magnificence of horses; can you tell us more?

Aseela is a celebration of authenticity, embracing what it’s like to be your true self, a message that is so important to me and I live by in my everyday life. Founding ALIEL has been for me a living proof of that message. I knew what I wanted from an early age and I believe it has helped me live truthfully. I specifically chose horses because those unique creatures represent strength, pride, and beauty. They teach us about truthfulness because they know no other way of being, they take us on a ride to our authentic presence that already lies within all of us, to own it and show up more fully and truthfully in life.

How did the eclectic color palette come about, and do you have a favorite?

I find myself inspired by earthy tones because they feel very grounding. All the shades of brown, white and yellow, all the way up to red and orange are my favorite. They represent all skin colors, adding diversity and acceptance which is one of my core values and the values of my brand.

What was one of your proudest moment since starting the brand?

My proudest moment was when I found out Kylie Jenner and Adriana Lima were wearing ALIEL.

What can we find in your own purse?

I like to travel through life light, so I only carry the essentials. My bag usually has my phone, cardholder, keys, sanitizer, and a face mask.

If tomorrow you’re allowed to make 3 dreams come true for ALIEL; which would they be?

They would be to have every woman wearing ALIEL and feeling empowered, spreading positivity and good values in the community, and hopefully starting a chain reaction of moving towards sustainability, acceptance, and diversity in fashion.

Editorial Credits:
Photography: @lemosen

Creative Direction: @leila_abotira
Styling: @ahmedwsorour
Model: @sheroukfarid
Modeling Agency: @unnmodels
Makeup: @ko.mua
Location: @el_sharky_arabians