entrepreneur * designer * artist * mom * dreamer
love fashion, beauty, spirituality, music, culture
For designer, artist and entrepreneur Samira Atash, her Afghan heritage and culture have provided inspiration since she was a child. Born in Kabul, Afghanistan, Samira remembers her grandmother Bibi Jan’s lush rose gardens, her mother Gulghutai’s floral scented skin (her name means “rose”) and the fabrics and textiles in small Kabul shops. After moving to the USA when she was 3, those memories lingered and flickered in her mind. Samira remembers learning to sew at a very early age, drawing artistic influence from her culture. She was also a little businesswoman from a young age. At 5, she was picking flowers from gardens and going door-to-door to sell bouquets. She became a self-taught artist, drawing portraits of faces and developed a love for fashion, arts and music.
At George Mason University, Samira decided to pursue a career in design after college. She would organize seasonal outdoor fashion shows and take art classes. In 2003, Samira made the move to New York City and over the next few years launched two independent, award-nominated labels. In 2004, she worked as a costume designer in Los Angeles for a film based on the mystical poet Rumi. The film required months of research into the costumes of his time, opening the door to Samira’s love for Rumi poetry.
In 2004-05, Samira visited Afghanistan several times to see what she could do to help create jobs for the women there. Her fashion company was part of the first trade delegation to Kabul. After visiting there for the first time since she left the country at 3 years old, she was again inspired by the people, the landscape, the scents, tribal embroideries, and fabrics. She was forever connected and in 2005, launched a “Silk Road bohemian” line and also designed hand carved wood + stone jewelry made by Afghan artisans. In 2006, she featured her collection “One” at a fashion show in the Washington D.C. area to over 1,000 people. Her dream was to open up a sewing factory and have designs manufactured in Afghanistan and shipped back to the states. This could create jobs and improve the economy. In 2007, Samira and her sisters launched Artizan Sarai, a socially responsible initiative that successfully marketed Afghan-made accessories and jewelry to high end boutiques and galleries in the U.S. In 2008-09, Samira introduced ‘UNITEES’, inspired by the poet Rumi and based on the philosophy of peace, love, unity, respect…and the idea that all humans are one.
In 2010, after getting married to her husband Kaiser in New York City, Samira gave birth to a baby girl they name Rumi Rose. She took a little bit of time off from fashion design to focus on mommyhood, then realized that NYC might not be the best place to raise their little girl. In 2012, they moved to Northern VA, and realized there was not much of a fashion industry. Not being able to keep her entrepreneurial drive at bay, she created and opened two blow dry bars with a group of investors. It was voted “Best Blowout in Northern VA” in Northern VA Magazine three years in a row, “Best New Business” and “Best of Reston” in Washingtonian Magazine. The salon offers hair, makeup, and brow services and during her research of product lines, Samira became interested in the benefits of organic/natural products and oils. While working on the design, construction management, and start-up of the second location, Samira found out she was pregnant with TWIN boys! Nik and Zaki were born on July 10th, 2014.
In parallel to her work as a fashion designer in NYC for 10 years, Samira also designed uniforms for UAE’s largest telecom company, worked as a fashion director for a multicultural magazine, styled several music videos, produced fashion shoots & shows, designed the branding & corporate identity for several start-ups, and in 2010 launched a multi-cultural media company, where the goal was to unite cultures through entertainment. Samira was creator/producer of the FUNatical Comedy Tour and Beauty and the East TV, an online tv show that connected East and West through positive, entertaining stories. She now calls her blog by this name.
In 2016, in order to expand service offerings in her salons, Samira became a certified/licensed microblading-pmu artist, launching Samira BROW COUTURE. The business became an unexpected hit and she quickly has become one of Washington D.C. area’s best artists, booked out months in advance. She was promoted to Royal Artist within the Phibrows academy in October 2017.
As her brow artist career flourished, times in the world became turbulent and Samira realized she missed fashion design. In 2016, she launched the Rumi Rose brand, selling boho-inspired jewelry and accessories inside her salons. But running two salons while juggling her microblading business and motherhood became too much. She felt despite all her outward success, her inner self felt disconnected and that owning salons was not her true passion. In 2017, Samira experienced what she describes as a “spiritual awakening”. She started rediscovering her Rumi poetry books. She started drawing and playing music again. Samira rediscovered what inspired her throughout her life and who she is at her core….and decided to launch Rumi Rose as an online store showcasing nomadic-bohemian fashion + beauty products, connecting cultures, giving back and promoting a high vibration, conscious, and spiritually connected brand. She looks forward to the journey ahead!
- Vintage shopping
- Home décor/real estate
- Organizing closets
- Pop culture
- Film, tv, music
- Breaking news
Bachelors of Science, Marketing (Honors): George Mason University
Branco Babic’s Phibrows (2017) – CertifiedRoyal Artist
Esthetic Institute (2016): Licensed Permanent Makeup Artist (trained in Blood-borne pathogens, disease/infection control & universal precaution standards as set by DPOR & OSHA)
National Safety Council (2016): First Aid/CPR Certified
NETSA (2015): Brow Shaping & Threading Certified
Graham Webb Academy (2014): Certified Makeup Artist
Parson School of Design, NYC (2000)
Fashion Institute of Technology, NYC (2004)
Two FGI “RISING STAR” Award Nominations
Design featured in “Men In Black II”
Designs worn by Project Runway’s Nick Verreos and CNN’s Soledad O’Brien, live on air
Designed sales rep uniforms for Etisalat, the U.A.E.’s largest telecom company
Fashion Director for Zeba Magazine; creator of the popular fashion “Do’s/Dont’s (Buko/Nako) section
Set work on feature film Salt, starring Angelina Jolie, 2009
Appearances on Law & Order Criminal Intent, 2008
Music video stylist – NYC – 2008
Lead actress “Zohra” in feature film FireDancer – first Afghan-American film to be entered into the 2003 Academy Awards and Tribeca Film Festival
Costume designer, Sheherzade in Los Angeles, October 2003
Elite Model Search Finalist, 1995
- Founder – FLOW Blow Dry & Beauty Bar
- Founder – Samira Atash Designs
- Founder – It’s A Miracle Maternity
- Co-Founder – PlanetPix Media & Entertainment Group
- PR & Marketing Coordinator at Nooristan Foundation
Here is a video of my bio & work from 2007: