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By Eleanor Dickinson A cre­ative agency ded­i­cated to rev­o­lu­tion­is­ing t he United Arab Emi­rates’ “tacky” fash­ion in­dus­try has for­mally launched in Dubai.

Founded last year by pho­tog­ra­pher and cre­ative Man­soor Bhatti and pro­ducer Faisal Shah, the bou­tique agency Things By Peo­ple was orig­i­nally set up as a fash­ion tal­ent house, but grad­u­ally pro­gressed in a more cre­ative di­rec­tion.

The com­pany has now of­fi­cially re­launched as a full-ser­vice cre­ative agency and has a team of 20 fash­ion ‘artists’ on its books in­clud­ing pho­tog­ra­phers, il­lus­tra­tors, stylists and hair and make-up spe­cial­ists.

Oper­at­ing largely on a con­sul­tancy ba­sis from its Down­town of­fice, Things By Peo­ple has al­ready worked on fash­ion cam­paigns with agen­cies such as J. Wal­ter Thomp­son, Mul­lenLowe, in ad­di­tion to brands them­selves in­clud­ing Cen­tre­point and Mall of the Emi­rates.

Bhatti, formerly cre­ative di­rec­tor at Mul­lenLowe, said: “We’ve worked a lot in­ter­na­tion­ally and what we no­ticed is that most peo­ple from out­side per­ceive Dubai’s fash­ion in­dus­try as tacky, and while we don’t like it when it is put down, the qual­ity of the work here is not good.

“Cam­paigns that look pretty to us here do not com­pare well in­ter­na­tion­ally be­cause there are no fash­ion Beau­ti­ful things: Man­soor Bhatti and Faisal Shah hope to start a fash­ion revo­lu­tion in­gre­di­ents used by the agen­cies. Frankly the posters look like they’re from be­cause the cam­paigns have gone through the wrong process. So we will work with clients and agen­cies on cer­tain as­pects like pho­tog­ra­phy or pro­duc­tion, or cast­ing di­rec­tion, but we would like to Toy Story be in­volved in the whole process. Cam­paigns need to have the right story for the cre­ative to use at ev­ery stage or else all work just looks the same.

“We felt in the mar­ket there was a need for re­ally good work. So we have on board the best tal­ent in Dubai and we have worked hard to make their books look so much bet­ter and more so­phis­ti­cated.”

Once the agency’s re­launch is un­der­way, Bhatti hopes to con­tinue Dubai’s fash­ion revo­lu­tion by launch­ing a model agency to at­tract more top in­ter­na­tional mod­els to the city.

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