Since its inception, designer and fashion influencer Muddasir Ahmed Anik’s fashion label Studio MM, has been known for its bold prints, modern aesthetics, functional details and quirky colours targeting the youngsters of today.
As a child, Muddasir found himself instinctively drawn towards fashion and would often find himself drawing out sketches – a passion that he had to put aside owing to the mentality in a country like Bangladesh, which does not view a career in fashion as an ideal choice.
A major in Marketing helped Muddasir gain knowledge about the insides of a business and how to run a brand. Add to that a vast experience that spans working with various brands within the industry, being an influencer, as well as modelling, gave him strong enough ground to start his own fashion label.
“I don’t have a degree in fashion, and neither did I take any courses in fashion but even then, I believed in myself and started what I had planned many years ago,” Muddasir Ahmed Anik, CEO & Owner of Studio MM, told Apparel Resources in an exclusive interview. “From being an Instagram influencer, to working with the biggest bespoke label for a year to full time modelling and then coming up with my own line – it has been a huge rollercoaster ride!”
“My friend Naziba and I loved taking pictures and every day after our classes, we would devote some time towards taking our outfit pictures and posting them on Instagram. In a short span of time, people started recognising our work and started asking us about our outfits and the places we visited, etc.,” Muddasir said. Soon thereafter, brands started reaching out to them for promotions and that’s when Muddasir’s journey as a full-time Instagram influencer began.
Within a year, Muddasir started working for a premium bespoke fashion company for their digital marketing campaigns, social media account, etc. This is where he learned the ins and outs of running a fashion business. One thing led to another and one day, the owner of the brand spotted Muddasir and asked him to walk for his Spring/Summer collection’s runway show. Thus, Muddasir was introduced to the world of modelling.
“Since modelling was never the plan and was just an experience I loved, it took me some time to think about what I could do with all the knowledge I had gathered in the past years,” Muddasir stated, adding, “Opening my own brand had always been a dream ever since I started sketching random figures wearing quirky outfits, but I never thought that I would have the opportunity to realise the same. Without wasting further time, I started Studio MM which is named after my Instagram blog @MinimalMudassir (MM), on 1st November 2019.”
Since then, there has been no looking back!
Product Assortment And Pricing
A one-stop fashion studio solution for all the fashion needs, Studio MM is essentially categorised into 3 stops, namely – Studio MM – which offers classic western clothing; ASIR – which is an ethnic line for men; and AMIHAAR(named after Muddasir’s mother) – which offers ethnicwear for women.
Priced between, BDT (Bangladesh Takka) 1150 – 3000 for Studio MM Basics range, BTD 2150 – 4000 for ASIR, and BTD 3500 – 6500 for AMIHAAR, Studio MM has something one can afford within the limited edition collection and also something that is pretty reasonable at the same time.
Being an Instagram influencer put Muddasir directly in touch with numerous teenagers who are always on the lookout for brands that offer good quality, fashionable clothes but at reasonable prices. “This led him to spot a gap in the market, keeping which in mind, Studio MM started creating pieces that are bold, modern, functional and yet, engaged with coloured style for all the teenagers and young blood out there,” Muddasir told Apparel Resources, adding, “If we talk about ASIR and AMIHAAR, the collections derive a huge inspiration and influence of Pakistani fashion trends which comes from my mother and my tastes. However, the classic Studio MM collection is all about bold, minimal fashion.”
He further averred, “Functional style as in the garment itself will compliment all body types without making the person put in any extra effort, and who doesn’t like being comfortable, but yet be fashionable at the same time. At Studio MM, we also pay attention to our customer’s comfort, highest fabric quality, etc., all the while keeping current fashion trends in mind. Some of our signature details include MM strap jackets and joggers.”
Manufactruing And Sourcing
Manufacturing essentially varies from line to line wherein, ASIR and AMIHAAR are entirely manufactured in-house at Studio MM’s own facilities. However, when it comes to bulk production which is followed by the classic Studio MM western collection, the manufacturing is done through other bulk suppliers based out of Bangladesh.
Studio MM comes out with 5 different collections in a year, namely: the classic Studio MM collection; basics summer collection; the ASIR & AMIHAAR Ramadan collection; the ASIR & AMIHAAR Eid-ul-adha collection; and the winter collection.
“We try to keep on producing our basics such as our summer collection, throughout the year owing to the temperature within Bangladesh which is mostly hot. However, some collections are kept as limited edition such as winterwear or the Eid collection,” Mudassir explained.
“At the time of choosing fabrics for our various lines, our topmost priority is customer comfort as well as effortless style. We outsource fabrics from countries such as China and Vietnam for our classic Studio MM westernwear collection, whereas, for ASIR, all fabrics right to the smallest of accessories such as buttons and other raw materials, are sourced from Kolkata,” Muddasir elucidated.
He then added, “We outsource fabrics from countries such as China and Vietnam for our classic Studio MM westernwear collection, whereas, for ASIR, all fabrics right to the smallest of accessories such as buttons and other raw materials, are sourced from Kolkata.”
AMIHAAR is a relatively new line which was just introduced in October, and keeping the Covid situation in mind, the label chose to work with locally sourced fabrics.
Within Bangladesh’s local country market, Islampur Puran Dhaka is one of the go-to hubs for Studio MM’s clothing owing to the wide variety of different fabric selection as well as its wholesale rates. But for other collections such as ASIR, Muddasir is of the opinion that the raw materials being outsourced from places like Kolkata allows them to be more creative in style while giving them an edge over other players in the market, and also helps them to come up with fabrics that are different and are not repeated by any other existing brands within Bangladesh.
The brand takes pride in its workforce and has slowly grown from employing bihari karigars for authentic zardozi work to even appointing fresh fashion interns that help in contributing updated and new ideas to the business.
Retail And Expansion Plans
COVID-19 has cast a huge impact especially for those businesses in large enterprises, as well as for those in smaller sizes. In this situation of crisis, a lot of business had to think about their workers and surroundings keeping their monthly revenue in mind. During this time, Team Studio MM decided to shift the whole business online, solely focusing on all kinds of social media such as Facebook, Instagram and getting affiliated with some of the best fashion e-commerce websites in the country. The label is available to purchase online and delivers locally as well as internationally via DHL services.
Commenting on the same, Muddasir said, “In my opinion I believe that, since COVID-19 is going to stay for a while, pushing sales online would be much better than participating in other physical activities such as exhibitions, pop up sales, etc.” The brand is directing all its energies into strengthening its online presence, and also plans to further expand into 2 more lines to create the entire ‘studio’ in Studio MM.