Anya Elsebai: The Start and Growth of Self Made Fashion

Anya Elsebai is a self-taught fashion designer and makeup artist who considers both as a form of self-expression. “The makeup I do doesn’t make me ‘average pretty,’ it makes me feel like myself,” she said.

Young and rapidly growing in her work, Anya Elsebai or better known as Ghost Lemur on the internet, is a 19-year-old self taught designer whose creations are in the works soon ready to emerge and shake the world. Having no “proper” education in design, she doesn’t let anything stop her passion and uses YouTube for her work, showing how much a person can grow without traditional tools of learning.

Drawing inspiration for her make up all the way from her family’s make up business in Egypt to being creatively stimulated by other people’s love for her work motivates her to give and keep making. Highlighting her other crazy unique talent: make upshe shocks, wows, and surprises anybody and everybody who’s in the way of experiencing it.

“I would do my make up but it would be standard, normal, whatever everyone wears,”she said, “Now I get a lot of weird looks. There are times when I’ll completely bleach out my eyebrows and people would be like ‘damn who is that, why does she look like that?’”

Get two things clear: she stunts and she is not apologetic for it.

“I like when I wear it so why not wear it…makeup is like paint on a canvas, so I can do anything. If I did makeup on myself to feel pretty I’d feel ugly. The makeup I do doesn’t make me ‘average pretty,’ it makes me feel like myself.”

I just want everybody to feel appreciated for who they are, cause I know it’s hard to feel significant sometimes.

-Anya Elsebai

While this perspective on makeup is very unique it’s most of all self empowering.

Self empowerment, especially as a woman, is vital for Elsebai. Her new clothing line serves a greater purpose than just fabrics.

“It started out being for myself, I wanted clothes I felt good in and then people started acknowledging it more. People wanted some! The more people wanted it the more I’d make it for others. I haven’t been making multiples, so I’ve just been making super big stuff that anyone can wear, not like one specific gender or one size,” she said.

Recently, she has begun her own fashion line called Doyenne Clothing, whose tagline is, “non-conforming fashion for all.”

Her stuff can be found on @DOYENNECLOTHING. Her designs are reconstructive, deconstructive, and industrial. The patterns on jeans or interestingly reassembled fabrics lead the viewer’s eyes on every little detail. As a designer it’s normal to want to make appealing clothes but Elsebai adds more with her philosophy.

“I always knew I wanted to create stuff, for other people or for myself, it’s a rewarding feeling to have something in your head and then make it,” she said.  “I just want everybody to feel appreciated for who they are, cause I know it’s hard to feel significant sometimes. Even with your family and friends it’s still hard not to feel alone.”

Elsebai creates pieces fit for anyone. “I haven’t been making multiples, so I’ve just been making super big stuff that anyone can wear, not like one specific gender or one size,” she said.

Future isn’t a fearful matter, for Elsebai.

“But ideally if everything goes [well], I want to be working for myself. I wanna have my own line and it doesn’t have to be top of the line but it just needs to be enough to support myself… and be happy, I need to be happy before anything else,” she said.

It’s really hard to not stress over what’s in store for all of us and in such tough industries, especially fashion, it’s almost easier to give in to the anxiety. But our young and energetic designer shows that her growth and positivity has been bringing her only up, sharing with us hope and unbroken motivation.

“I have an advice from an amateur’s perspective because I haven’t been creating that long but I’d say stick with it if you enjoy doing it, don’t let other people put you down and don’t feel upset if you feel inspired and mimic from another designer because it’s all about gaining experience,” she said.

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