Monday, May 4, 2015

Glimpse into you … Dubai mum-entrepreneur Katia Najjar from Poupette à la plage ♥

I recently came across Poupette à la plage, a lovely homegrown children’s brand. I love the use of sweet Liberty London print and classic designs. The well crafted range includes swimwear for boys and girls, dresses, shorts, beach ponchos, hair-ties and much more for children between the ages of 6 months to 12 years old.

It definitely has a reminiscence of french inspired style and bring certain nostalgic sensibility. It's all very charming and remind my of my childhood in South of France. Walking into the recently opened flagship boutique in the new BOXPARK in Jumeirah, is also a trip to memory lane. A walk into the Cote d'Azure beach atmosphere with vintage French cabana, and the white washed distressed wood.

I had the opportunity to ask a few questions to Founder and Creative Director Katia Najjar about her clothing line best known for its swimwear and beach accessories, her new stand alone boutique and her inspiring Dubai life. And how as a mum entrepreneur, she manage to balance it all.

About you

Where are you originally from? 
My Name is Katia Najjar. I am Lebanese French and I am married to Dr Rabee Abu-Kishek.

How long have you lived in Dubai?
Almost 7 years

Please tell us about Poupette a La Plage and what inspired you to start your business adventure?
Poupette à la plage are impeccably made chic beachwear and matching accessories for children. French brand which was conceived in the UAE. I had always wanted to be a full-time mum while being able to work at the same time. The concept of Poupette à la plage was appealing and while started as a small hobby selling a few swimwear items in a basked has turned into a fully pledged company.

Who inspires you?
My daughter Délia. As a young girl, she loved the story of a little princess on the beach who always looked pretty dressed up in a colorful swimsuit with ornate knots and matching accessories as well as being free carefree. The princess’s name was Poupette à la plage. I wanted to make the story a long-lasting memory, so Poupette à la plage beach and swimwear was created. My son, Liam, could not be left without and as the story had it, the little girl always played with her younger brother Liam on the beach and often were joined by friends. It was inevitable for me to launch of a cool boys’ apparel next. I named this range after my son’s name so it’s called it Liam à la plage

Any lessons learn alone the way?
Everyday is a lesson, be patient, persistent and have strong belief and conviction. It’s also important to be very clear when communicating to other with the team and outside.

About living in Dubai

What inspire you in/ about Dubai?
The cosmopolitan life and the diversity of cultures makes it challenging and aspirational at the same time! 

Favorite thing to do in Dubai with children?
I love going bowling with them and we all like watching the stars at night. I also love to catch up with them and listen to what they have to say about what they have done in school and with their friends

What's your favorite way to spend the weekend?
A movie night and popcorn is becoming a habit. When we get the chance we love to go camping in the desert or hit the beach.

Do you have a Dubai secret to share with us?I love the flamingo place and Al Barari

A Dubai store you could spend hours browsing?
O’de rose I cannot get enough of all the chic bric a brac items, there is always something different for every lady’s taste… I feel nostalgic so the store brings back happy childhood memories!

A little extra..

Things you can't live without?
My family and work

A song playing on repeat in the car?
Formidable Charles “Aznavour”, as it is nostalgic and reminds me of my mother

Any motherhood tips, advices or words of wisdom on how to juggle it all? 
Plan in advance and align with the kids
Delegate when you can
Stay positive

Do you have a life motto?
'Adapt and overcome' is my new motto.

Take a look at Poupette à la plage!
Store location: M1-06 BOXPARK Al Wasl Road, Jumeirah 2, Dubai.

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