We chat to Gulnar Tyndybaeva and Julia Sukhanova, founders of Dubai-based sustainable label Nature Hedonist, to discuss everything from sustainability and style to their love of the abaya
How did the two of you meet?
Gulnar: We used to be part of the same ashtanga yoga community and, coincidentally, we were at the same life stages — broken hearts after a divorce, and the beginning of a self-healing journey
How did Nature Hedonist come about?
Julia: After we met we started to spend more and more time together, and one day Gulnar told me that she had been thinking of creating a new fashion brand that would help people to create a wardrobe for any occasion with no restriction of freedom or movement, yet no compromise on elegance. I just knew I had to be involved too!
What are the most important inspirations behind your collections?
G: Nature; different forms and species that it creates together with the exploration of the heritage of different cultures, traditional elements of clothing. We like the idea of timeless and yet refined wear.
Sustainability is a huge part of the brand — how do you express this value throughout your collections?
J: For starters we use natural fabric — linen grows naturally wild in nature and doesn’t need much water. The beauty lies in the durability of the fabric and it ages so gracefully. Don’t be scared of the clothes ageing — it’s all part of the process. We are human beings, we sweat, we move, and linen moves together with us. Plus, it doesn’t need much cleaning as it absorbs sweat and can be air dried. It doesn’t need to be washed after every use which reduces our water and electricity consumption, too.
How would you describe each of your individual styles?
G: Effortless, minimalistic and flowy layers.
J: Minimalistic with a classy touch — both of our styles can be seen throughout the Nature Hedonist brand.
And your go-to looks for the 9-5?
G: Pieces that match together no matter what you pick up and natural materials, all of the highest quality.
J: I have two favourite colours — black and white, as they both look elegant and are able to fit to any occasion.
What couldn’t you live without?
G: Skincare and music.
J: Sport and travelling.
Where is your happy place?
G: In a very green garden!
J: I love the water, so wherever the sea is I am happy.
How do you relax after a long day at work?
G: I enjoy a long walk and quality time with my loved ones.
J: My passion lately is contemporary dance — it helps me to stop my brain from working too hard and instead concentrate my focus on pure movements.
What’s next for Nature Hedonist?
G: To inspire people to fall in love with linen in general and the abaya in particular. We are taking the opportunity to present this traditionally Middle Eastern element of the wardrobe to the European mentality. Explore the collections
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