Rana Ghezelayagh, International Academy of Design and Technology in Seattle, Washington

In July 2006, I immigrated to the United States from Iran and decided to make a big career transition from chemical engineering to fashion design – my real passion.

It was not easy to start a completely new major after being out of school for a long time, especially one not in my native language. Additionally, it was challenging because I was working as a teller at a commercial bank and then I moved, helped remodel the new house, got engaged and planned a wedding. In the end, it all happened with hard work, little sleep, and teacher guidance.

After I received my degree in March of 2009, I started freelance designing for family & friends. I even made my own wedding gown which I modeled in the 2009 IADT – Seattle “Imagine” Fashion Show. I began work on my first collection during the spring/summer of 2009. Then, in December of 2009, I showcased my first fashion show in Kirkland, WA featuring my Para collection of trench coat dresses. During this same time, my website for my brand “anar Couture” [ http://www.anar-couture.com] was launched.

My show was successful and the next challenge was how to effectively market my brand. It was fate that I was invited to be one of “The Independent and Emerging Designers” at the Seattle Fashion Week 2010 Runway Show. Since the show, anar Couture has been mentioned in various news articles and fashion blogs, and I have been invited to show my collections at other fashion shows.  The pace of the fashion world is extremely fast, but I am excited for the journey on which I am embarking. I have the courage and confidence to create a niche for my creative, innovative work.

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