Buffi Jashanmal, Project Runway alumni, teacher, author, fashion designer and EW’s new contributor. We find out what makes her tick…
What is a day in the life of Buffi like?
Busy! I’m a fashion designer and teacher. I have been teaching in New York for three years with girls as young as kindergarten, to adults.
I also have a book on dressmaking coming early next year. It’s a fun and unique approach, different to other designing books out there. You learn the skills of a designer, but with the fashion tips of a stylist. It’s for beginners to advanced seamstresses, for those who have no skills and want to master the basics, or for those who want to take their knowledge onto the next level as a pattern-maker and designer.
How do you spend your spare time?
Working out, a lot.
I spend between 1-3 hours at the gym either taking classes or working out on my own, I call it Buffi’s Boot Camp! I drag my best friends to all sorts of crazy classes around the city, spin, yoga, climbing and then we re-tox after a workout and try one of the amazing restaurants around NY.
I ‘m addicted to Anti-Gravity Yoga too, it’s amazing. I also love to rock climb, dance, use weights, and play. Actually, I’m training to get my group fitness qualification, so look out for Buffi Boot Camp in Dubai soon!
How was your experience on Project Runway?
It was the best time of my life. I’m so honored to have been part of the show. Over 100,000 designers apply every year, so to have been chosen is pretty awesome.
The scope of talent was amazing and the experience continues to inspire and drive me. It’s one of the most challenging experiences but the rewards are second to none.
Lifetime and Comcast continue to support me, and I have been hosting events and fashion shows in NYC and Philly since the show.
Buffi on Project Runway last year
Did it further your career in fashion?
Yes, in some exciting ways. I am teaching and presenting more, which is where I see my career going. I love to DIY, and with my book coming out, teaching and hosting all goes hand in and hand.
Would you ever do reality TV again?
Depends on what it was. I would love to have my own DIY show!
What is your current wardrobe obsession?
Accessories! My advice make your own and save money. They’re the best way to transform an outfit. Pick a look and create an accessory inspired by that look without going over the top.
I also love nail art – again, another way you can be wild, without being too much and looking unprofessional at the office.
Do you see Dubai or New York as home?
My family has been in the UAE for nearly 100 years and the Dubai I remember as a child is home, not what it is today. I miss that, but it’s still an amazing place.
However, New York is where my heart belongs and always will. I love both places but I’m excited to be coming home but I’m not saying goodbye to NYC just yet. Call it a ‘see you soon’! I think Dubai has a lot going on and I feel it’s a great place to be right now so I’m excited.
Where do you see yourself in a few years time?
I will be the DIY fashion queen of Dubai – helping women look awesome, unique and showing them how they can do it all themselves.
What advice would you give to budding designers?
Be true to yourself as a designer/artist. But remember it’s a business, and sometimes you’ll have to sell your soul a little bit.
Figure out your goals, it’s a hard industry. It might be better as a hobby in some cases, but if you’re willing to fight and put in the hours, it can be an incredibly exciting career!
I’m reading..Sisters about the Mitford Sisters.
Breakfast is… the meal I take the most time preparing.
My vice is… burgers.
I can’t live without… Stevia, gym kit, herbal tea – gosh I am dull!
Beauty is… objective.
New York… the best most amazing place in the world.
Dubai is…marriage material: safe, home, and reliable.
Watch this space for Buffi’s DYI video’s coming soon to emirateswoman.com
Image: soios.net, nyc.brightestyoungthings