Indeed, as they say: life imitates art. We have seen this in many examples in life, from the way some of the human body’s structures imitate those of the interstellar world in nature, to modern artists finding inspiration for their work in the most unusual ways.
But Katkouta Limited is different. This line of Arabian-inspired designs with influences from popular cultural and religious concepts aims to inspire its customers. Maha Al-Ginanni, the founder of Katkouta Limited, tells me her thoughts and objectives behind the initiative.
Q: Can you give a description of your business?
A: I wanted the brand name to be in Arabic because it is primarily targeted at Arabs. I have always been creative and had immense love for creating nice things, I relied on my graphic design skills to create the logo, and all my designs myself. I noticed that many young designers were putting out t-shirts and other textile-based designs. I knew I wanted to design something but I was hesitant to design t-shirts. On one hand, the process seemed relatively straightforward, on the other hand, the t-shirt I design will only be worn a few times a month and have to be washed, and will eventually fade. I decided that I would design something durable that can be carried like a tote. I’d love to one day learn textile design and create a clothing line, but I’ll leave this for when I am more established.
Q: What was the idea/vision behind this start-up?
A: I wanted to create designs that we could use on a daily basis (like tote bags) and which would behold a fun and inspiring message. I wanted to bring forward our cultural and religious identity in modern and contemporary designs. My most popular tote bag was a quote/sentence by Sayeda Zaineb (as); I saw nothing expect beauty; لم أرى إلا جميلاً, which I personally consider empowering and inspiring quote. It reminds me that I should always stay strong and faithful during hardship and that I should never let go of my principles in life just like Sayeda Zaineb (as) did in Karbala.
Q: What are the advantages of having this business? These can be personal or general.
A: The foremost advantage of this business is to employ my creativity in something productive and fun. I do not consider my business as work rather as a fun hobby, since I still study and have part-time job. But I found that through my designs I could bring to life part of my identity and share it with others.
Q: What are the milestones you’d like to reach in the next year?
A: I would like to ensure that my brand receives more publicity and like I mentioned earlier I like to expand my business and start designing clothing, additionally I would love to collaborate with other designers.
We wish Maha great success with her start-up, and look forward to seeing more of her creative innovations.