We had the good fortune of connecting with Nabeela Raza and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Nabeela, what is the most important factor behind your success?
My business is to decorate and set up for very precious life occasions. Therefore, I believe that the most important factor for the success of my business is to help my clients showcase their joy and make their events memorable.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
My journey started in high school when along with my elder sister I started to dabble in designing my own outfits. It was for fun first but it soon became a passion. I enrolled in a college that specialized in Arts, Crafts and Fabric design. Unfortunately, I could not pursue a full time career in fashion design after graduating from college because I had to take care of my ailing mother. Nonetheless, I kept creating even in that difficult time of my life by designing for myself and friends. Along the way I picked up the skill of painting wall murals which coincidentally became very handy in the next part of my journey when I moved from Pakistan to the US after marriage. I painted few Mughal era art inspired wall murals in our apartment which became a hit among our circle of friends. I soon started getting commissioned via my friends network to paint murals for children rooms and home nurseries. I did several projects but could not grow that business because for the next several years we had to relocate multiple times due to my spouse’s job.
After going around half of the world our journey brought us to Houston in 2016, where we plan to grow roots. Houston being such a dynamic city helped us to cultivate a large circle of friends in a very short time. We love to entertain our friends at home. Over the years, I have arranged several theme specific parties at my home and received abundant compliments on party decor. Lately, a few of my friend’s children got married and they shared their frustration about the challenge of getting their events decorated. You see, Pakistani weddings are extravagant and include series of home based small parties which precede the actual wedding ceremony. Due to the ethnic nature of these small gatherings at home, it is difficult to engage decorators, that typically decorate for large parties, for such events. Sensing an opportunity I started offering my services to decorate such events and have completed several successful projects.
I am currently offering services to decorate the venues for Dholki, Engagement, and Maayoon ceremonies I also offer bridal jewelry and garlands made of fresh flowers. I hope to grow this business to offer party decor services for other typical events such as birthdays, graduations, bridal and baby showers, etc.
In parallel, I am restarting my work on fabric design and I am in the.process of creating a portfolio of hand painted raw silk scarves. I have already crafted a few and have received very positive feed back from friends and acquaintances.
So far it has been a fun journey which has taught me perseverance and finding new mediums to express my creativity despite the odds. My work is my passion first and business second. I work with my clients to customize my products and services to match their vision, preferences, and budget. While it may not be the most efficient or profitable approach from the business point of view, but I take pride in offering customized services so that each event and product is unique. I believe that this approach sets me apart from others. I am excited about this new chapter of my life and appreciate the opportunity to share my new endeavors via your platform.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Glad that you asked this question. My best friend did visit me during this past holiday season. We visited mutual friends in town for endless gossip over lunch and tea. I took her to dinner at Agha’s and Lasbela two of my favorite restaurants in town. We spent a day at the Galleria mall and then swung by the Hilcroft street for some spicy snacks. Our kids are the same age so we took them to NASA. Another day was spent at the Zoo and Museum of Natural Science It was cold otherwise we could have made a trip to Galveston. Overall we had a good time.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I would like to thank my friend Madiha Chughtai. She provided the inspiration and courage to launch my new endeavor. She is also my role model on how one can balance family obligations while running a successful business.