After many years working in the fast fashion industry in the Middle East, Farah Ragheb decided to create her own fashion brand after seeing a lack of ultra-sustainable slow fashion pieces in the market.
BUENA ONDA is based on a unique concept that sees the brand launch only a small number of key wardrobe staples each summer. All of the pieces are designed to last season after season and to capture the essence of summer that we all dream of. Made from the finest materials and designed to be versatile each of the pieces in the collections will appeal to women with all tastes and styles. Farah’s vision to transform the way we buy clothes offers a forward-thinking concept that not only provides us with key wardrobe staples but is also kinder to our environment. Here we discover more about the brand and the vision of the founder.
Tell us a little about the unique concept of BUENA ONDA?
BUENA ONDA is a premium summer lifestyle brand that releases only 3 items every summer. Summer after summer, each collection connects to the next, building towards an ultimate set of apparel and lifestyle items for a laidback, premium summer lifestyle.
Why do you think this kind of concept is something the world needs right now?
In a world that celebrates moving fast, this ‘normal’ works against our human nature. Innately we thrive on a steady pace, fewer choices and heightened quality in all areas of our lifestyle. Going in the other direction by moving slowly, doing less, regaining focus on what counts and taking an approach that nurtures both wellbeing and success hand in hand, is the avenue for a future-proof way of life.
Talk us through the current pieces.
The Summer 2021 collection encompasses luxurious simplicity – a collection of apparel items that serve blissful summer days and nights whether that’s strolls along the coast, lounging around tropical villas or dining under the stars. When our product developer, Jeffrey Cheung, who’s based in Hong Kong, took a trip to Japan – he found inspiration for our Kumo Trousers in the craft behind Japanese pleating and the street style’s airy street styles. The Kumo Trousers are crafted from premium Crepe De Chine fabric that drapes like a dream with a cooling effect – ideal to keep it cool through the warmest season. The Paradise-Gardens Chill-Out shorts are a reiteration of our best selling original Pistols and Royals chill out shorts. This summer they make a come back in luxuriously luscious satin fabric. The Kōketsu boxer dress (which is already sold out) is inspired by the classic boxing robes of Muhammad Ali – redesigned with the ambience of feminine luxury and versatility.
We know sustainability is at the heart of the brand – can you share some of the steps you take within the company to ensure sustainable production?
We believe that sustainability is not just one part of the brand, but rather, a holistic approach that touches on every process and level. By releasing only 3 items every summer, we substantially eliminate waste by producing less. We follow a lean inventory system whereby we launch with a pre-order method and produce the quantities that meet demands to avoid any excess stock. By pursuing only 3 items every summer, we allow generous space for creativity.
What is the message you want to send to consumers about how they can shop smarter today?
Buy only what you really love. Keep your collection minimal and of beautiful quality.
What is your vision for the future of the company?
To slow the world down.
If we were to invest in one piece from the collection what should it be?
That’s a tough one – each item is a beautiful experience of its own. If we really had to pin it down, then the chill-out shorts for their originality, the Kumo trousers for its dreamy fabric, the kaiyō cruiser for its notable quality, even as an interior design piece, & the royal summer robe for its majestic vibe.
How has this past year been for you and have you made any changes moving forward after the pandemic?
The pandemic brought further to light the need for a lifestyle balance alongside the pursuit of success. In this time, BUENA ONDA’s simplistic business model, the Simplified Retail Model, proved to be future-proof and to hold the solution to many of the retail industry’s growing dilemmas.
In March 2021 we debuted the first Simplified Retail Model Elite MasterClass, a 3-week experience drawing participants from New York, Los Angeles, London, Prague, Copenhagen, Oslo, Montreal, Sydney and more coming together to discover a new path on designing a lifestyle and career that’s innate with our very nature. The Simplified Retail Model is a path that lets you be human again. A path that makes space for wellbeing uplifts others alongside us as we succeed and gives back full circle. Isn’t that what we are all craving?
What inspired you to launch your own brand?
After working in the fast fashion and lifestyle industry for over 15 years, including leading the launch of Topshop and Topman across the Middle East, the brand arose from a desire to find originality, quality and thoughtful detail in my material investments. To create a brand experience that radiated the feeling of summer bliss. A space to create beautiful items with the liberty of time and spontaneous inspiration sounded ideal.
Going about brand building in the total opposite direction of how the fast fashion industry was operating, was calling. The approach, mindset and business model that was discovered on this journey of going in the other direction and letting simplicity reign, is one that thrives simultaneously with nature and people while radiating positive impacts at every level. Imagine that?
What is the professional motto you live by?
How would you describe the brand in one word?
What is a message you would send to our readers to tell them all they need to know about the brand?
The more we allow ourselves to take a steady pace and to find stillness and moments of peace, the more we will realise that the over-consumerism of today is not serving us. The more we can support brands taking a move towards creating in a way that positively serves us all, including nature, the environment and each other – the more we will commence to reign influence in this space and inspire the current and future generations to take a mindful approach to how they consume, create and give back.
What can you tell us about Buena Onda in the Middle East and can we expect to see more of it here?
As a region that enjoys warm weather throughout most of the year, BUENA ONDA’s summer concept is ideal. With many of our customers based in the Middle East – we’ll continue to connect directly with our consumers to build a chill community, retailing directly with them via our online store at www.buena–onda.com.