We begin the Vanina style journey with Dalia Nsouli, fashion influencer, banker and mother to be. Her bustling lifestyle makes it almost impossible to imagine how she constantly looks this good, but it’s clear that she’s an extremely hard worker with no time to spare. This is reflected in each task she carries out, including her Instagram account which has collected over 30 thousand followers. But even between her busy schedule, we were fortunate enough to spend the morning with Dalia chatting away about everything from dressing up to her journey in fashion so far.
Vanina: Tell us more about yourself, how did you become an influencer?
Dalia: I always loved shoes and so I started by snapping the shoes I was wearing each day against a unique floor or background. That proved to be popular with ladies since we all love shoes. I slowly started integrating more of my outfits while leaving my face out of pictures and so I think people were really curious to find out what I looked like. By not including my face, my aim was to have my followers sole focus on the outfit, which was the aim of my Instagram page as well. I then started showing my face and full images of myself once I felt that I had established a reputation for my sense of style and not anything else.
V: What is the best thing about it?
D: I love the freedom of dressing up, expressing myself through my outfits and the reaction of my followers to my experimentation; the good and bad. I love the feedback, which in turn makes me want to keep on going.
V: How did you develop your personal style and what inspires you?
D: I think such things develop when you’re young, from external influences such as family and the city you live in. My mother always loved dressing up and loved bold patterns. My love for jeans is totally from her for example. So I think these things start quite early in people and develop through the environment they live in. My travels and time in London studying also really shaped my style as an adult. Exposure to different cultures, people and tastes helped shape my personal style.
V: How do you balance between your work and your influencers’ life?
D: It’s not easy! Social media when taken seriously is really a full time job. Your followers look forward to your posts and so you can’t wait too long between posts but at the same time, you have to maintain the same level of quality; so that requires a lot of time and effort. Another factor is originality. You can’t keep posting the same pictures with the same background, so I’m always searching for new places to take pictures in and outfits to wear to keep my followers interested. It’s not as easy as the pictures make it look if you want to do it well because there’s normal life in between all of this, such as work, family and running errands for your home. I have a full time job as a banker which takes up most of my day, and so I’m only left with evenings and the weekend to work on social media. I nevertheless love balancing both.
V: What drives you to support local talents?
D: I love to support people and small business which are passionate about what they do. I love the creativity and uniqueness they bring in an increasingly globalized world where everything looks the same. I appreciate the struggle that small businesses go through to compete with large more established brand names and that makes me want to support them if I truly believe their product deserves it. This is especially the case for talent from Lebanon and the Middle East. I love supporting homegrown businesses because I’m proud to be Lebanese and Arab and this is especially the case with Vanina who hand craft everything in Lebanon and employee those less fortunate to do so. Their efforts in using recycled material to make their accessories is something that is truly inspiring and makes me proud to wear.
V: What’s your favorite collection/product at Vanina thus far?
D: It’s so hard to choose because every piece is so original, from the clothes to the accessories. If I had to choose, it would be the pearl hoop earrings from the latest collection ‘Conserved’.
“This dress is pure femininity to me. It has a very liberating shape with an open back but while maintaining a flowy structure. The cherry on top is the vintage floral print which is very trendy this summer, but also a classic”
“No one is better at bringing classic prints back like Vanina. I love gingham and its ruffle stitching and droopy hem make it the perfect summer dress, or in this case maternity dress!”
“Vanina loves old glamour and this shift dress screams that. Such an easy, effortless but super cool piece to wear for a cocktail or fancy dinner. I chose to pair it with their signature bag made out of a recycled tin can, which is nuts!”
“Anyone who knows me knows I love my polkadots and stripes, and that I love mixing these two fabrics with other clashing patterns. I think these pants are perfect for summer with the wide leg which is very trendy right now. I chose to wear it with a clashing print of course”
All of Dalia’s looks are available for purchase on the online store.