by Villa 88
  • 3 minute read
  • June 29, 2023
Dream Big: Noor Mohsen, The First Bahraini Designer At Louis Vuitton, Shares A Riveting Account Of Her Journey All The Way From Paris

If you’re born in a family of creatives, artistry is often considered as a form of inheritance and a dynamic legacy. But even if talent and creativity are products of nature, they must be nurtured, recognised and supported.

Having grown up in a family that has been affiliated with the jewellery industry since the last 350 years, I was always surrounded by antique and modern jewels and objets d’art. It compelled me to develop a love of the arts, which I continued to explore as a hobby. To broaden my technical horizons, I worked at a financial institution for five years, following which I thought it was time for me to turn my passion for art and design into a pursuit.

I acquired a Master’s Degree in Accessory Design from Politecnico di Milano in Italy. The diverse programme offered deep insight into the realms of jewellery, watches, millinery, luggage, eyewear, shoes, and leather goods. Spending time with like-minded individuals and hearing their inspiring stories propelled me to realise my own dream of living in a fashion capital and working for a luxury house.

Nsouli white and yellow diamond necklace, recreated by Noor for her gouache art portfolio

I moved to Paris and worked hard to build my portfolio, eventually landing a role at Louis Vuitton in December last year. Being a part of the design team at such a reputable Maison has been an unparalleled learning experience.

I’ve spent hours examining the signature Louis Vuitton Malle, and surveying the library and archives to ensure that my creations combine the brand’s DNA with my own aesthetic vocabulary. I’m eager to see the culmination of my hard work when the brand reveals its Winter 2023 and Spring 2024 collections.

Speaking of my designs, I believe that beauty lies in simplicity and enjoy creating minimalist pieces. I often take inspiration from nature and try to make thoughtful and purposeful choices. The most memorable project that I worked on during my Master’s programme involved proposing a sustainable sandal design made with algae. The idea was to bring attention to the issue of overfishing, its association with algal blooms, and how it impacts the livelihood of fishermen.

A ring design by Noor for her gouache art portfolio

The road to success is never without hurdles, and I experienced my share of challenges along the way. The main struggle was to prove my mettle as a design student at university, as I was the only one in the programme with a finance background. Many professors had doubts when I first introduced myself, but I worked hard to prove that I belonged there by developing my creative know-how, self-studying, visiting museums, and doing research. I also learnt Italian and French at the same time, which was no easy feat.

I believe that the future of design will be more considerate towards nature, and the onus is on designers to take a more sustainable approach towards fashion. If all creatives become a part of the environmental movement, then suppliers will be obligated to manufacture eco-friendly products.

My aim is to inspire and mentor women to dream big and achieve their goals. Invest in your skills and never stop learning. I may be the first Bahraini designer in the Louis Vuitton team, but I certainly won’t be the last.

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Photography by Felik Wong; Images courtesy of Noor Mohsen.

The featured sketches are from Noor Mohsen’s personal portfolio. She’s a part of the design team working on Louis Vuitton’s Winter 2023 and Spring 2024 collections that are yet to be revealed.

This article was originally published in Villa 88’s Summer 2023 edition. Subscribe here.

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