THE MAN BEHIND THE HANDLE
Ever wondered how you become an ‘influencer’? We go some way to finding the answer.
With nearly 50,000 followers Taleb Jassim, the man behind @luxurydesign, has been creating compelling Instagram content for more than 10 years attracting collaborations with the likes of Dior, Hermès, Bulgari and more. In 2022 he took the big decision to quit his job to pursue his dream of working online full time as well as setting up his own café with a floral twist. FACT caught up with him to talk inspirations and aspirations.
When did you start @luxurydesign and why?
Literally the moment I knew about Instagram, around 2012. @luxurydesign was my handle in the blog era and it continued to be my handle across my socials. I started it out of a passion for content creation. I think I always had an eye for photography.
Did you always intend to become an ‘influencer’ and how did you build your following?
To be completely honest, it happened naturally and unintentionally. I loved taking pictures and I loved sharing them. I also used to make a lot of graphic designs and add to them a touch of fashion, this is basically how I built my Instagram profile. People loved my designs, photography and, I guess, my style.
What inspires the non-partner content you create?
Basically, everything I encounter in life inspires me to create. Whether it is an outfit I loved or a lyric I read from a song. The inspiration is limitless.
You’ve had collaborations with some very high-end brands, how did these come about?
As an influencer, to attract high-end brands you basically need two things working in your favour. First, a unique brand that you build online and an amazing manager/ agency! So, in my case it’s my Instagram profile and Aida Remach. You have to create a brand in order to attract one.
Which has been your favorite partnership so far? And do you have any new partnerships coming up?
I don’t have favourites, each and every partnership has a distinct place in my heart. Because each one has its own unique moments attached to its creative process.
Your bio mentions that you are an interior designer. Please tell us a bit about this side of your life – how did you qualify and can you tell us about any projects you’ve worked on?
I love design in general, whether it is interior design, graphic design or fashion design. I just have this tremendous love of creating things and making my ideas come to life. So, to answer the question I did not graduate with an interior design degree, it’s just a hobby of mine that falls under the same umbrella as the love of creating things. However, I’ve worked on some projects such as my coffeeshop Blooming Gate, my old coffee shop Vintage and some other private projects.
You gave up your job last year to pursue content creation full-time. How has that been working out? Were you worried at the time?
Definitely! I was extremely worried; I took a huge leap of faith! But whenever I think about it, you can’t put a price on freedom. I didn’t like the idea of a fixed routine and being bossed around doing things I did not enjoy. My mental health suffered because of my previous job but now I’m at peace and living my dream!
You have also now started Blooming Gate. Please tell us about this venture. What inspired it and are you the designer for the flowers? If yes, how did you learn to do this?
I have always dreamt of having my own little coffee place, and I had this weird obsession with flowers! So I decided to combine the two and to start my own little shop! So far it is doing great and I am thankful to everyone who has supported me in this journey.
What’s next for the future?
I will be focusing on creating content even more! Trying to achieve more high-end collaborations and engaging more with my followers. In addition to taking my business to the next phase. I’m really looking forward to this year.✤