Give us a little of your history and how you got into fashion blogging.
I was born in Iraq but my family and I left the country after the war in 2003. We migrated to the United States in 2007. It was a big change for us, new place, new people, and new language that we didn't speak. But the warm welcome we got from Rochesterians made this city a home for us.
In 2013, I graduated from Rochester Institute of Technology with a bachelor’s degree in Information Technology. Then worked as a software engineer at Brand Logic, a company here in Rochester. Since I was a little girl, I loved fashion and I dreamt of becoming a model. When I became a teen, I realized my height wouldn’t help (LOL). So I changed my mind to become a fashion designer, and I went on to design pieces for others and myself. But all of these dreams weren’t an option for a woman who lived in conservative society. In addition to fashion, I really enjoy math and coding so I focused on that.
Tell us more about what you do.
Three years ago my husband suggested that I start a fashion blog since I dressed up daily and liked to take photos. I hesitated because of the language barrier, English is my second language and I wasn’t confident writing posts for native speakers. At the same time, I felt so excited about the idea of doing something I’m so passionate about. So I opened a Tumblr account and started my blogging journey. After a year of blogging, I realized that I needed to step up my game to stand out and reach more people, so I opened my own website and social media accounts.
In 2017, I focused on my social media because I knew if I could expand there, my career as a blogger would go to the next level. My initial goal was to reach 10k on Instagram and 250k on my Facebook page. I dedicated a lot of time and effort to reach my goals by generating high-quality content and engage with my followers. However, my experience in the tech industry, especially the years I spent working in Silicon Valley, gave me insight and a deeper understanding of how social media algorithms work, especially those deployed by Facebook and Instagram. This knowledge helped me be a step ahead in reaching my goals. When my social media channels grew things started to shift for me.
My first year in social media was an amazing one. I had the honor to collaborate with a lot of amazing local and international companies such as Banana Republic, Simon group, Alterna, Solutions Salon & Spa, and there’s a very exciting one coming soon. I can’t wait to share it with you. Every time I look back at where I came from and where I’m today, I think that life is amazing and we women are badass superheroes.
What do you love about Rochester? Tell us your favorite places/spots.
The most thing I love about Rochester it’s people. Since my family and I moved here, they made us feel welcomed and made this city feel like home for us. I could never forget the amazing people who helped me to be where I’m today from my ESL teacher to my neighbors and friends. I feel truly blessed to live here.