To namedrop a few. Layan Al-Dabbous is the designer behind “Claudette the Brand”, a clothing line as well as a movement and community addressing mental health problems and celebrating youth. When asked ‘Who is Claudette’ in an interview with Milk Magazine, Al-Dabbous says “Claudette at her core is a movement. A character that represents positivity, fellowship, ambition, authenticity and living life and realising how similar and connected we are”. Speaking on the conception of the brand’s doodled mascot, the Kuwaiti creative shared its origins with Mille World saying “One day I was fooling around with illustrator and drew a character. She was wearing a beret, so I thought it would be cute to call her Claudette. The character itself really resonated with me and I knew there was more to this than just a doodle.”
Before moving to New York City to study at Parsons School of Design, Al-Dabbous grew up in both Kuwait and London, where she noticed issues around the universal topic of mental health, it was a problem never spoken of. Claudette the Brand later became her platform to address the subject and provide access to a supportive community.
Never having felt like a ‘girly girl’ herself, another objective of the brand was to challenge the heavily-gendered notions of fashion in her native country, by blurring the lines between fashion and art with a unique graphic flair and an unbridled DIY approach. With messages such as “we are all people”, “the kids are tired” and “cry baby”, Al-Dabbous aims to shed light on the feelings and difficulties her generation deals with. Claudette’s increasing popularity with pop culture icons hasn’t distracted Al-Dabbous from the brand’s foundation blocks and message.
An online store is currently in the works, in the meantime look out for pop-up events and fashion shows!