The Ahmeds' - Asema, her attorney sister Talaiya Ahmed Safdar and her mom Dr. Anjum Ahmed - started Magnolias Linens in NY when they found a dearth of appropriate wedding and event decor linen in NY. They got back to India, where they have their origins, sourced a few fabrics and 'showed' them to people from the industry back in NY. There was no looking back! I spoke to Asema not long ago, and here are excerpts from our conversation.
About Magnolias Linens being a family venture
Says Asema, "The business was started with the three of us, but I am now running the NY operations. The business started as my mom's idea and we worked from her home. At first we got one order in the first few months (yet it was still very exciting). Then we started getting recommended and we are now doing about ten events a week! In one year we got out first showroom, then a few months later we got our second."
About working as a family
Asema says, "It was such a great experience for the three of us to work together. We all brought very unique things to the 'table'. We design most of the linens and ofcouse we work with brides and clients to design exactly what is in their mind for their perfect event."
What about Asema's own home? What's her style like?
Says the lady, "In my own home I stick to details and elegance. I spend days decorating and finding fun and elegant ways that guests can enjoy themselves and be entertained by the decor as well. My inspiration comes from all the basic things in life, the season, the weather, holidays, family, and even my mood!"
About being a preferred decor source for celebrity events
From wedding decor to celebrity events (as high profile as the Chelsea Clinton wedding), movie premiers to private 'do's', Magnolias has proven itself over and over again! Asema says they are very fortunate to be working with celebrities and high end clients.She says, "I think our product speaks for itself. But we also appreciate all our clients and each and everyone is a pleasure to work and create with".
They work with leading wedding planners and event managers in the industry to give their exclusive clientele the very best decor, the perfect ambiance and a truly memorable party. They now also work with hotels and their hospitality linens grace many important banquets.
About expanding her business to serve clients in India
Yes, I definitely hope to do more events in India, we have started to do a few and can't wait for the future..
Well, good luck Asema! It was lovely interacting with you!
Did you my blog reader like this feature? Write in to me or just post a comment. I'll leave you now with a video clip of Asema talking about how she got into the business, as she shows some of the linens in her store inventory.
Asema Ahmed, Magnolia's Linens speaks about her products and business.
Special thanks to Asema's Production Manager Sheila Ann Toland for co-coordinating the pictures for this blog post.
Interested in knowing more about Magnolias Linens? Head to their website.