Behind the Seams : Expat Artist Arwa Turra

“Words intoxicate me” – Arwa Turra

Arwa Turra describes herself as a designer, story teller , artist and mom. This Indian expat is currently living in Jamaica professionally as a Designer and have worked as an Interior Designer in India and Dubai for several years. She is known for her unique flower art that we first saw at “Moda Market” last November. Her pieces were so beautiful that we used one of the “Ballerina Girls” as our Cover Page Image for our special Christmas Gift Guide Magazine. When she shared exclusively that she would be releasing a T-Shirt Collection we just had to get first dibs! Today, The Haute Lifestyle goes Behind the Seams with Arwa Turra.

THP: So, how did you become a T-Shirt Designer?
A.T: My art is one of a kind -- It’s a medium to tell stories of strong & independent women from across the world. The focus of my art is the Woman -- drawn to reflect the poise and grandeur she possess and is supported by architecture from the country she belongs to, drawn as the backdrop. But, what really makes my artwork unique and draws attention, is the use of silk flowers to design the dresses of the illustration. The layers of flowers add a third dimension in otherwise flat two dimensional works. I am a self-taught artist and when I showcased my art, I got enough love and appreciation from across the world. As I progressed with my art techniques, I wanted to discover different 'canvas' (surfaces & mediums) to 'draw my stories' and so I thought of doing it on fabric. I want people to not just adorn their walls but to dress themselves in my art. Also through clothes my work can reach out globally to art lovers.

THP:  We know you as an Artisan, why did you decide to tap into the T-Shirt market?
A.T: There are people who are satisfied with the products off the shelves and then there are some fashionistas who don't settle for ordinary but want their outfits to be given special attention. I want to cater to those fashionistas and art lovers with my handmade art and crafts on t-shirts and dresses. Also, many of my audience saw my illustrations & their dresses, and said that the dresses look so real that they wanted to get it for themselves. So to fulfil the requests of my fans to make my art wearable, I started investing my time and passion into this new product.

THP: Talk us through your creative process
A.T: First comes the passion to do something gratifying and unique, then comes the ideas & the drive to accomplish it, then I brainstorm the concepts which should bring out the story I brew in my mind at the weirdest hours of the day like 3-4 a.m. (hence my writing page - 'Spilled Thoughts at 4am', but that’s for another day!) and once I know what I am going to do, the process is easy and fast. I prepare few rough sketches, finalize one; paint, stick and sew the flowers or jewels to bring the illustration to life. The final test is that I wear it and check myself in the mirror thousand times to see how cool it looks (or not!) and then I make it public.

THP: What is your biggest reason to get out of bed every day?
A.T: Apart from my kids jumping on my back and yelling in my ears, my desire to get back to my artwork and quickly sketch the ideas which were instilled by some secret force in my mind overnight. No, I am not joking, just trying to be poetic because I love writing and reading too.

THP: Tell us a little bit about your new T-shirt collection?
A.T: This collection will be my first collection and it consists of t-shirts and summer dresses with my handmade and embellished illustrations onto them. It is made out of love for girls and women who are fashion and art lovers and are so proud of being a woman. The different kind of illustrations would cater to different kinds of women. The Free spirited Bohemian, The selfie queens, The pout queens, The Chic and Stylish Dresser, The down to Earth soul, etc.
People who have followed my art will now see it on clothes and will be able to wear them. I intend to do my next set of collection on different styles of tops and dresses but it will always be casual, street wear and fun party dresses.

THP:  Which of the T-Shirts are your personal favorites?
A.T: The Bohemian girl on the white t-shirt because I love that illustration and I feel connected to that personality of being free spirited, fun loving yet very chic. Also it can be paired up with blue denim shorts, which are my personal favorite and can become a very effortless casual chic outfit.

THP: Imagine you were stranded on a deserted Island... What 3 items would you take?
A.T: My family pics, a good book and chocolates!

THP: What can we expect from you in coming months?
A.T: More and more stories scribbled, painted on various surfaces and new designs and styles of my wearable arts.

THP: Where can we find your T-shirts?
A.T: Individuals and boutique owners who wish to buy my hand painted clothes can contact me on my Instagram (@arwaturra) and FB (Form Fashion & Flowers) page until I develop my website and I shall keep my followers on Instagram and FB page updated about developments on my side.

Photo Credits:
Natasha Camille Photography

Arwa Turra

Twitter: @hautepeople
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  1. Greetings from a Caribbean gyal in Dubai. These t-shirts are lovely!

  2. Nikhat kifayat12:06 AM

    Your work is unique and your words and thoughts add a twist to your great work...happy working 👍

  3. Great ideas n awesome work��

  4. super amazing art work ARWA..... unique work for me....ALLAH pak bless u


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