One can pursue his/her heart’s calling even while focusing on a particular vocation, proves a medical doctor based in Saudi Arabia. Imaginative fashion has been a passion right since childhood for Ophthalmic surgeon Leyla Al Jassim. An attempt out of this passion, lead Dr Al Jassim to success with an added sense of satisfaction – to contribute a step towards making the earth a better place to survive. The creative mind in Dr Al Jassim made her think in terms of turning the most commonplace objects such as cassette tape and CD’s into elegant creations. The endeavor won her the second place at the Second Recyclable Fashion Show held at the Amwaj Island, Muharraq in the Kingdom of Bahrain.
“Right from the beginning I used to find ways of turning things that were otherwise useless into something useful,” said Dr Al Jassim. “I was inspired to create dresses after attending the first Recyclable Fashion show and I was amazed by the idea of creating dresses out of unconventional materials,” she said.
“Then I decided to participate in the next show and chose to make a dress out of cassette tape and another out of Compact Discs (CDs). “All my spare time, I spent designing the dresses of my imagination.
“I reviewed previous recyclable fashion shows around the GCC and got an idea of the materials they use,” she said. Cassette tapes were her choice – ‘to make a dress with tapes seemed unique,” shared Dr Al Jassim.
“I framed an idea in my mind as to how I want my dress to look like and started knitting it,” she said.
Dr Al Jassim said she felt it was rather easy to stitch and it took her around two weeks to complete the dress made out of tapes from 11 cassettes.
Well, it when she tried her dress on a friend of hers, she realized – wasn’t all that easy a path, she noted.
“I noticed that the dress was too heavy and was drooping down,” she said. “I thought of making it a normal dress with two shoulders after this, but instead ended with yet another idea. “I added a waist belt which I made with water bottle plastic, wrapping paper, aluminum and cola can leaves.
“This worked well and I started making matching hair accessories with the same materials as the belt,” she said. This creation won the second place at the show.
Getting the other dress was a tedious affair for Dr Al Jassim because stitching CD’s together was tricky.
“So I decided to use tin flower made from cola cans in between each CD so I could get a grip and stitch between the CD’s to make the dress firm.
This time it took her three weeks to complete the dress which she knitted out of 90 CDs in total.
“I used the unused CDs available at home and did not buy any,” she added. The success at her debutant attempt in designing dresses left Dr Al Jassim surprised, but said that she feels proud and satisfied.
“This was my first experience ever at designing dresses and I never expected to win,” she said. “My family supported me the throughout the show. My husband kept critically analyzing my designs and it was my son, Aouab, who actually pushed me to participate,” said Dr Al Jassim.
She is planning to participate in the third Recyclable Fashion Show next year as well.
“Next time I want to try with plastic material to knit my dress. “Getting plastic together might be difficult, but will see the best that I can do about it,” said an enthusiastic Dr Al Jassim.