It’s a rare talent to create art that punches up people’s perception of the world into something more significant or beautiful than it previously seemed. The Pakistani phyigital artist Sara Shakeel possesses that talent. The bewitching images she’s known for present mundane scenes with visual complexity and trigger our optimistic sensibilities. Her world looks like a place that you’d have fun in, and the appeal of visiting it with her is quantified by the likes on her pictures. People want to see what she sees – making Sara Shakeel’s eyewear collaboration with Linda Farrow all the more exciting.
Even though we can’t perceive the world as she does, we can wear a pair of sunglasses from the Sara Shakeel and Linda Farrow’s collection to remind us to try to. Shakeel imbued her aesthetic into each pair of Farrow’s Debbie D-Frames, wrapping most of them with crystals that glitter like her images. We sat down with Sara Shakeel to talk to her about her limited-edition capsule so that she could share her insight into how the collection was created.
You have a great eye for design. Were fashion accessories always an avenue you wanted to explore? Talk us through what led to your decision.
Sara Shakeel: I have always been attracted to accessories more than clothing itself. I’m the kind of girl that prefers to take a simple dress and accessorize it to the nines, transforming it from ordinary to extraordinary in my own signature way!
I have been creating samples of sunglass designs well before this collaboration came about. Having always wondered if I would ever get an opportunity to do so, what would the end product culminate into? Little did I know, those series of practices and playing around – even posting iterations to my Instagram – would one day turn in to being a heavyweight design collaboration in reality! Talk about manifesting, right?
One could infer that “seeing” is one of the key themes of your work. Was your decision to collaborate with an eyewear company linked to this penchant for visuals?
Sara Shakeel: It is rather poetic if you think about it! I obviously have created a space and brand purely based on one’s sense of sight. Having everything in my work sparkle, it only made sense to have a collaboration with an eyewear brand. There’s nothing quite like that – dazzling and bejeweling someone’s vision – or the way by which they view the world. I’d obviously want to take it further if I could, hopefully having someone see the world through my own lens, and how I observe sparkle everywhere I go.
For me, sunglasses make the cut of an absolutely necessary item I can’t leave the house without. So much so that I would rather forget my purse, but never my sunglasses! The second I wear my sunglasses; I am transported into my own world of imagination. There’s also this sense of comfort in hiding behind them at times. No one can see me, but I can see everything!
You’re known for bringing joy to others through your artistry. Is there a specific emotion or feeling that you hope people take away from this collaboration?
Sara Shakeel: I hope to heal, spread smiles, instill creativity and joy. Working with Linda Farrow was delightful! I was pregnant while I was creating these sunglasses, and I remember Simon (the Creative Director) presented me with a teddy bear and said, “I would love to have a sparkling Sara bear as well”, and I couldn’t stop smiling. I was so happy!
I knew that this collaboration was meant to be synonymous with joy and positivity. With the addition of the sparkling Sara bear, it almost felt like a nod to my then unborn daughter! This collaboration for me feels like a daydreamer’s dreams coming true, from working hard towards a vision to making it a reality. I’ve run the gamut! I would love for people to wear them and feel empowered, confident, and believe that whatever they envision through these glasses is absolutely possible! They are the lenses through which a dreamer should view the world, a manifestation of dreams if you will.
We know that your fans – ourselves included – are thrilled about this collab. What makes it special to you?
Sara Shakeel: Thank you so much for the love, truly means the world to me! This collaboration is all about dreams coming true. At least for me since I spent hours and days conjuring up ways in which I would produce eyewear myself. I couldn’t be prouder to say that I envisioned this day for myself long time ago, and today I’m actually getting to launch it alongside such a reputable brand! I want people to believe in themselves and dream hard! This collaboration is a tribute to every dreamer out there!
Can we ask if you have a favorite pair of sunglasses from the collection?
Sara Shakeel: You can’t ask me which of my babies is my favorite! I love them all! They’ve all been conceived and designed with a lot of love bearing my world and its fans in mind.
Lastly, can we expect more fashion-focused work like this from you in the future?
Sara Shakeel: Of course! So much more to come!
Discover more of the Sara Shakeel X Linda Farrow collection here.