Jun 01

Street Style Huntress: Alora Boutique

by Aldona Barutowicz · 0 comments

I’ve had the pleasure of calling Jameela Ghann a friend and colleague over the past few years, and I absolutely love what she’s doing – not only the designs of her jewellery line, but also her efforts to create and cultivate community in our city.

When we first met many moons ago, it was her incredible and positive energy that captured my attention, and of course, her personal style, which has continued to evolve over the years. I photographed her then for street style, and then had the immense pleasure of also styling her for a Style Q&A with Avenue Magazine a couple of years ago as well.

And as her business and personal style continue to grow and evolve, I decided it was time again to showcase her wonderful and gorgeous self – especially when I spotted her in this incredibly unique and stunning outfit!

So make sure you check out her work here – https://www.alora.ca

xo Aldona B, Street Style Huntress

@aldonabcreative

How would you describe your personal style? 

I would describe my personal style as fun, bright and eclectic! I like to draw on my West African heritage while still keeping my silhouette modern. I never take myself too seriously, and I love to wear print. 

What are some of your influences when it comes to fashion? 

When it comes to my influences, I would go back to my West African roots. I am always enthralled with the bright, bold prints that designers in the region are coming up with. I also really enjoy women like Ava Duvernay who melds interesting patterns with classic cuts and styles. 

What are some of your favourite stores and shopping destinations in Downtown Calgary? 

My personal favourite store in downtown Calgary for gifts has to be Land and Sea in the Core Shopping Centre. East Village Junction is the perfect place to be downtown in the summer. There is always live music or some kind of activity going on on the stage.  

What are some of your favourite Downtown YYC spots? 

I enjoy finding a bench on Stephen Ave during lunch time to watch people after I visit the best Thai place downtown: Rose Garden Thai. The river walk is also quite lovely for photos, and of course, people watching. 

What are some of your favourite trends right now? 

I am loving the high saturation hues that are popular right now. Think Crayola colours. Think the 80s. If it is bright and in your face, it is cool. You will be spotting me in those colours this summer for sure! 

What fashion advice would you give to others? 

Oh I have so many pieces of advice that I personally live by: 

– Don’t be afraid to try new things. 

– Wear things that fit well and have a bit of structure to them. 

– Buy quality pieces.

– Have fun with your wardrobe.

– You can never be overdressed.

– What you wear is a reflection of who you are.

That last one may be controversial, but people always make snap judgements based on what you look like and many times your clothes do the talking for you. 

Tell us more about the projects and work that you’re involved with. 

I am the designer for Alora Boutique, a jewellery company that adds beauty and meaning to your life while enabling you to do good in the community. We launched an initiative called She[EMPOWERS] for International Women’s day. It was an event with female-entrepreneurs to celebrate and support the economic empowerment of women in this city. Funds raised were donated to WINS, and the brand has now grown into a pop-up shop in East Village Junction. We are really hoping to expand this network of female entrepreneurs in the future.

What are some of your future aspirations?  

We really want to form a community of women who want to look good and feel good about what they are wearing. Our jewellery line has recently expanded to the USA. We are excited to now be a Canadian jewellery brand that is carried in US-based stores. We are planning on expanding further into the USA in the future, and of course, solidifying our charitable giving right here in Calgary. 

How does your work influence your personal style? 

I would say my personal style influences my work! I like to design things that I can see myself and my customers wearing. However, I would say that my work influences my style in the way that I always feel the need to “show up” and “stay on brand” with my style. I love it, in the sense that I have an excuse to buy and try new pieces that say something about who I am and pair well with my jewellery. 

Anything you’d like to add or tell us about? 

When you are deciding what to wear don’t worry too much about what other’s think about you. If you want to mix your prints and take a style risk, please do it. There is (almost) nothing worse than being boring in fashion!

 

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