Guyana is a trove of gifted young entrepreneurs and Keisha Edwards just happens to be one of them. Though full of activities, Keisha squeezed in some time to chitchat with MagLYFE about why she chose designing, her upcoming International Fashion Show and the importance of family.
Keisha Edwards has an appetite for learning new things and craves positive interactions with people; she maintains certain core values that she acquired at a tender age and it is her intention to use all of these facets to grow as an individual.
When we think or hear of Keisha Edwards, we think of ShaSha Designs. Keisha is the brainchild, founder and CEO of ShaSha Designs.
Not many of us can sketch fierce pieces AND bring them to life by using a sewing machine but Keisha can. Keisha has always had an eye for colours and mixes, so when she was constantly approached by friends asking for her help with everything surrounding fashion she decided that fashion and designing was her calling.
Running ShaSha Designs enables Keisha to have positive interactions with persons and she believes that it is virtuous to be able to make a living from something you’re very passionate about. Keisha began designing in 2005 but ShaSha Designs really took flight after she debuted at the Guyana Fashion Weekend in 2009. ShaSha Designs is traditional rock meet modern wear; all of the pieces feature an edgy, hip and contemporary appearance.
The name “ShaSha” was coined from using the endings of Keisha’s name and that of one of her best friends and right hand woman, Aleysha Persaud, who’s played a pivotal role in its genesis.
Since 2005 to present, Keisha has grown expressively. Corporate Stepping, ShaSha’s last collection is Keisha’s best work to date. She says it embodies a substantial amount of growth (She is her biggest critic). However, she wasn’t the only one to see this growth; Keisha has received a lot of positive feedback about the collection. To see the line, click here!
Sketching fabulous pieces is one thing, bringing them to life with the sewing machine is another; creating these masterpieces by mere observation is AWESOME! With no formal training, Keisha learns as she goes. She has acquired her skills from looking at her mother; from attending a course at the Carnegie School Of Home Economics and very remarkably, YouTube tutorials, combined they have helped her to perfect her talent.
Keisha’s had a number of successes but what’s challenging is finding good workers or workers who’re able to provide the quality of work she wants. She’s also encountered quite a few indecisive customers; what she’s done to counter this is to have persons sign to everything they’re asking for, this just ensures that everybody is happy at the end. J
When it comes to creating beautiful pieces, Keisha is inspired by a number of things, but most significantly she is inspired by God. Her lines all embody the catchphrase “personality risen to the surface” which was coined by another one of her best friends, Kateri Savory. Keisha works her best when she is extremely happy or extremely sad, however she prefers the former.
“When you have the support of family, you can do wonders” says Keisha as she talks about her very loving and close knit family who has been her biggest supporters. To Keisha, both family and friendship are important; she says you’re most fortunate when you have friends that become family. She’s very privileged to have good friends (and she keeps mentioning Aleysha & Kateri) who’ve always been there for her and who she says help to keep her grounded.
When asked if she’s taken, she replied with an unflinching yes. When asked what she believes love to be, she countered “love has no shape, shade or size” – spoken like a true designer! Keisha believes that when you’re in love you should love the good with the bad. When asked what her perfect date would entail, she cheerfully responded “there is no such thing as a perfect date!”
Designing is definitely Keisha’s calling but if she had to choose another profession, she would have chosen Law. Simply because she has always wanted to pursue something that would be positively impacting and that would enable her to help people.
Keisha has a life outside of sketching and sewing, when she’s not consumed with everything designing you can find her curled up with a good book, hanging out with friends or talking on the magicjack (with Kateri.)
For Keisha there is no such thing as “perfect happiness”, to her if such a state did exist then the world would be a very boring place. Happiness for her is awareness – “Happiness is awareness, it’s knowing that you’re going to get hurt and that bad things will happen.”
The Future …
Today, Keisha is very busy with preparing for the Caribbean Style & Culture fashion show set to kick off this June in Maryland, USA. The fashion show seeks to promote promising talent. Keisha is very thrilled to have been invited, not only is it her first international show but she enjoys any chance to showcase ShaSha Designs.
Her days are filled with her creating new pieces for the Fashion Show, the line is still a work in progress but she assured me that the line will be edgy with a fusion of European styles.
While abroad, Keisha will use the opportunity to promote ShaSha Designs to the American market and the Guyanese diaspora.
When Keisha started ShaSha her dream wasn’t to be Givenchy or any famous designer, she just wanted to use her talent to the best of her ability and one day hoped to be the household name for clothes in Guyana. She takes things one stride at a time she says.
Although Keisha is busy working on her pieces for the Caribbean Style & Culture show she still found time to whip up a few fashionable pieces for the upcoming July – August holiday. It’s a summer offer and the pieces range from as low as $5000 to a very affordable $8000. You wouldn’t want to miss this.
Keisha’s advice to persons interested in designing:
“You might hear that designing is not realistic, or it’s not profitable, but if you have a dream, work hard, you can accomplish and achieve whatever it is you want out of it. Believe in yourself.”
FIVE things you don’t know about Keisha Edwards:
1. She sews her own clothes.
2. She cries when she looks at sad movies, even cartoons.
3. She does not like Chowmein, especially when it is mixed with corn beef. (I mean who doesn’t like Chowmein!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!)
4. She is a sucker for animals, especially dogs.
5. She does not look at scary movies.
To keep up with Keisha’s work visit ShaSha Designs on Facebook.