Creator Hayet Rida shares with me her journey in building her fashion-forward brand KHOI. The striking pieces are simply beautiful. In this conversation, we discuss the meaning of the name KHOI, her heritage and culture, and of course, her why. When answering questions regarding Mental Health care Rida is very transparent about seeking assistance and her addressing her creative fatigue. It was such a pleasure to get to know more about the mind behind this unique and beautiful collection.
Q: What is the meaning behind your brand name?
Hayet: The name KHOI originated/was inspired by the Japanese saying “Koi No Yokan,” meaning “love will come.” I tweaked it a bit to add my initial H in there, as a full letter to self-love and self-discovery. My entire life has been a journey of finding internal love, love for my passions, and love for my manifestations. With KHOI, I can now proudly say, “Love has come.”
Q: Share with us about your Ghanaian Culture and Lebanese heritage – how did your family ensure that both cultures were present in your upbringing?
Hayet: I was born and raised in beautiful Accra, Ghana, and was fully immersed in the culture. Our home growing up had lots of art pieces that helped me fall in love with rich Ghanaian culture. I also had the honor of traveling to Lebanon in 2018 to reconnect to my paternal roots. In the collections, you will always see Ghanaian creative elements, and many of the names pull from my Lebanese sources.
Q: What are three tips that you can share when self-doubt begins to creep in?
Hayet: No one is going to tell you this, but self-doubt is good. Now what you do with it, is the magic. Stop avoiding self-doubt. Own it. Embrace it…and then move forward ANYWAY!
Q: What was the catalyst that led you to seek assistance for your mental health?
Hayet: I have had the honor to have many friends who openly talk about their mental health and therapy. I remember being in awe when a friend casually said, “ I have therapy on Thursday, and I will call you after.” I was stunned because she said it as if she was talking about a nail appointment. It made it feel normal and made me comfortable enough to ask her more questions. This is the biggest reason why I speak so openly about therapy. If I make it sound like a hair appointment, more people will happily schedule one.
Q: What pieces mean the most in your collections?
Hayet: I always have a HERO piece, usually, the one that is the main campaign image. For my NOUR collection, there is an onyx piece that reminds me of fireworks and sparklers. Those elements are used in moments of celebration, and that is what brought me joy. KHOI turns ONE on July 1st, and so to me, wearing that piece is like having a sparkler on my birthday cake.
Q: What inspired the idea of releasing limited edition collections monthly?
Hayet: I am a deep, deep creative who honestly gets tired. I release pieces as reflections of moments in my life, and then I grow past them and move on. That was a huge fear when building this brand, the fear that I would get TIRED of seeing pieces over and over again. So then I asked myself, why would I do what everyone expected if it caused me artistic fatigue? I also love walking up to someone in a piece and knowing they are a loyal KHOI Babe because they have a one-of-a-kind piece.
Q: How important was it to have Ghanaian creatives be a part of your campaigns?
Hayet: All my campaign images are remotely shot in Accra, Ghana, with a whole Ghanaian creative team. That is so important to me because Ghana has so so much talent, and you do not always have to be home to pour into the Ghanaian economy. This was a way of bringing tangible Ghanaian elements into this legacy I am building here with KHOI.
Q: Creating opportunities is very important – why does this mean so much to you?
Hayet: At every corner of my journey, someone has seen my potential and kept a door open for me, or left a crack in a glass ceiling. I am who I am because people believed in me and this fire I had inside of me. I see it in many people, too, and I want to be for them, what others were for me. There will always be seats at my table, and if it gets crowded, I will build another one.
Check out my full interview with Hayet by clicking below:
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