Dato’ Seri Farah Khan has proven to be a juggernaut in the fashion space time and time again.
For this Singaporean, she had her start in the island nation. After almost a decade of running The Link, she sold the store in 1982, and set up a Malaysian multi-brand boutique, Le Salon, that would later grow into what we now know as Melium Group.
She had a humble start, with the single distribution rights to Aigner. Now, industry giants are knocking on her door hoping to get their pieces on Malaysian shores — and to get into Dato’ Seri Dr Farah Khan’s very capable hands, no less.
Thirty years later, and with each successful partnership with international brands such as Givenchy and TOD’S, she has eventually morphed into the legend that she is today. “From the Germans, I learnt precision and organisation; from the French, I learnt flair and brand building; and from the Italians, style and creativity,” she said in a 2009 interview.
Even back then, Dato’ Seri Dr Farah Khan understood the importance of evolution. While her clients remain the same, the target groups are definitely an ever-shifting matter. “I’m also [now] serving their children, their daughters, their sons-in-law, and it’s a completely new market for us,” she has previously said.
Clearly, the same sentiment stuck, as the fashion mogul continues to find new avenues in which she can serve up-and-coming tastemakers.
How Dato’ Seri Dr Farah Khan is forging a new fashion frontier
In 2022, the revolutionary fashion entrepreneur flexes her creative muscles to introduce MIND/KIND — short for MIND OF A KIND — which is home to 16 brands from across the globe such as Seoul, Milan, and Los Angeles.
Speaking on the exciting new frontier and how the company has evolved with the times, Dato’ Seri Dr Farah Khan says, “Our strength in the last 30 years lies in curating for the evolving needs of our customers. We are not afraid of change, we embrace it. If nothing else, the last two years have taught us the brands unafraid of change will be the ones still standing after the storm.”
Dato’ Seri Dr Farah Khan’s name is synonymous to the empire she’s currently spearheading, Melium Group. For decades, the moniker Melium conjures up images of prim and polished designer pieces, such as the kaleidoscopic fabrics at Emilio Pucci, the gorgeous and prototypical outerwear of Max Mara, and the luxurious shoes at Roger Vivier, which is oft-described as the Faberge of footwear. Melium is also home to Dato’ Seri Dr Farah Khan’s eponymous label, which she established in 2007.
This style icon has an impact so big, that she was conferred the Italian Star of Solidarity Order (The Ordine della Stella della Solidarietà Italiana) from the Italian Ambassador to Malaysia Alessandro Busacca in 2006.
As the fashion crowd evolves…
Under this revolutionary endeavour at MIND/KIND, the group explores a new realm of fashion, and fans will see a more relaxed aesthetic in the urban contemporary labels housed here, where many of the pieces transcend gender and age. After having dressed many generations, this new venture is Melium Group’s way of celebrating the younger fashion crowd.
At the “Shall We Play?” runway show, the group highlights brands such as Acmé De La Vie (ADLV), Maison Kitsuné, Alyx, Barrow, Blue Sky Inn, Fiorucci, Elisabetta Franchi, and Andrés Otálora, all of which are available at MIND/KIND, and can be found at the newly unveiled Lalaport Mall at Bukit Bintang.
As Gen Zs age up, there is a growing need for the fashion world to evolve, to fall into step with this emerging group and how they express their identity. To address this shift in the tectonic plates that make up the local and global fashion scene, Melium Group brings MIND/KIND to the forefront.
The Head of Division at MIND/KIND is Stanley Saw, who has over a decade’s worth of experience in the retail arena. He believes that designer goods can simultaneously break conventions while also being crafted to exacting standards. “The aesthetics may be casual, like sneakers and denim jackets, but the workmanship, attention to detail and materials used are all on par with designer brands,” Saw says.
The likes of supermodels such as Gigi and Bella Hadid, and celebrities such as Sophie Turner and Olivia Rodrigo have donned pieces from the brands repped by Melium Group at MIND/KIND. That aside, these brands have also racked up a cult following.
Pieces from these streetwear fashion labels feature tailorings that champion the carefree, from the loose fits and the rugged texture and prints. While this style may not be everyone’s cup of tea, those select few can celebrate the fact that there are now luxury options for them to add to their wardrobe that exude both finesse and extravagance.
On the KLFW 2022 runway, stars and friends of the brand such as Zul Ariffin, breakout star Timur, and Maman dazzled the guests and the crowds that swarmed the stage.
After a spectacular showcase at the recent KLFW, we spoke to Dato’ Seri Dr Farah Khan about the evolution of her fashion empire.
I find that fashion has always reflected the times, and streetwear is very much the code now. Ease, agility, dynamism, freedom, movement — these features are finding their way into our wardrobe.
We got in frequency with what the customers want. We simply listened.
For both my personal and business lives, it means staying relevant.
People are more relaxed. They value experience over things. The mindset has evolved and the fashion reflects that. Ease must accompany style, form follows function.
Trends don’t register with me on any scale bar commercially.
They aren’t all streetwear per se but I’m wearing ADLV, MCM, GCDS, and Nakedwolfe. Because they give me a sense of freedom.
All images: Melium Group
This story first appeared on PrestigeOnline Malaysia