Last Sunday I was given the honor of working with the UNICEF-DePaul University Chapter to act as the Fashion Director for their 3rd annual For The Sake of Fashion benefit runway show! 100% of the proceeds from this event went towards the U.S. Fund for UNICEF, and of course, all of the clothing was sourced from socially-responsible boutiques and designers. We had the honor of showcasing 5 very talented and beautiful brands: Le Dessein, Mata Traders, CLEON's Clothing, One Find Duo, and Anastasia Chatzka, each of which not only so generously loaned me their clothing in order to make the show possible, but they also are leading the way for a brighter, more responsible fashion industry. Below are a few select snapshots Alex took pre-show followed by complete sets of looks by the designers on the runway. Because of the (basically) endless number of photos she took, the rest of the photos will be posted on le Facebook Page, so as to not overwhelm you with photos (and secretly encourage you to "like" ze page!). Also the post-show photos look like holiday cards (who knew a bunch of Muslims would make great Christmas cards! Feel free to send to your relatives) which is handy. So you probably want to check those out, here.

"To arms!"


~ t h e  s h o w

Le Dessein | Elegant, sophisticated, classy. Le Dessein works to fund the education of young girls from underprivileged backgrounds--each of the portraits that you see chastised on to the clothing are done by the girls, who are then supported through purchases from the clothing. An incredibly beautiful brand, inside and out!

Mata Traders | As an avid pattern-clasher myself, the bright and fun prints (block-printed by hand with eco-friendly dyes!) were rather eye-catching and flattering on all body types. Not to mention that Mata Traders has a strict, fair-trade-only policy, working with women from cooperatives in India and Nepal that also provide not only fair wages and training, but also family services and literacy classes!

CLEON'S Clothing | Started in 2005, CLEON's is a local Chicago brand constructed entirely by the hands of local designer Chad, and continues to be entirely a rather impressive one-man show that carries both cutting-edge (literally) mens and womenswear that make a powerful image.

One Find Duo | Young, playful, edgy. Based in Chicago and only a few years old, One Find Duo is a curatorial vintage re-sale store that partners with local non-profit organizations that empowers and encourages youth in the South Side of Chicago to become strong and charitable leaders. Not to mention that their vintage patterned windbreakers are basically the best thing ever.

Anastasia Chatzka | Feminine, bold, colorful. Another local designer in Chicago, Anastasia is brilliant when it comes to the mix of textures and fabrics and color. She also is incredibly conscious when it comes to the fashion industry's "fast fashion" trend of excess waste and production, striving to bring morals and authenticity to her line by working with highly skilled artisans and not turning towards exploitative labor to create her art. 


Photos: Alex

Again, thank you so much to Joseph and the DePaul University UNICEF Chapter for allowing me to be a part of this amazing event! Show them support by checking out their Facebook Page here where you can also see more photos of the show from other photographers, and JooJoo Azad's Facebook Page here where you can see the rest of the photos taken by Alex! (Including a few awkward photos of myself pretending like I can do public speaking) (and those holiday cards I mentioned) (coming soon tonight)!

p.s yes maybe this post was supposed to go up a bit earlier but I got back a *bit* later than expected from the Her Campus College Fashion Week Show last night and immediately passed out on my flatmates so my apologies. Also, speaking of which, photos from College Fashion Week coming up shortly, as well as a few exciting collaborations! Huzzah! xx 

Enjoy your Sunday! 



Fun fact: I put together a lengthy and (if I do say so myself) great blog post for Blog Action Day 2014 on the topic of inequality today but alas I fell asleep last night on top of my roommate and lost all my work. #hooray! Instead, I've been pretending like I don't care about inequality, anyway, and have been slowly tending to my "new shit" music playlist, thanks to a super cool Dane I've befriended (who also dresses far better than myself). Have been listening to a few of these songs on repeat, and decided I would share because this totally makes up for it, right?

But because I failed to upload anything today, I wouldn't want to deprive you all of your activist juice so here are a few of my favorite reads from the day on the topic of inequality from a range of perspectives! I highly recommend perusing through these beautiful articles and supporting the bloggers behind them who were smart enough to save their work! Enjoy!

1. Being Black in the Fashion Industry | Style Honestly
A very powerful article written in first-person delineating personal experiences and feelings as a woman of color within a very white and western industry

2. Inequality in Mental Health  | Picnic With Ants
As someone who unfortunately is uneducated in the realm of mental health, this was a very eye-opening and personable article

3. Global Wealth Inequality-What You Never Knew You Never Knew  | The Rules Org
If you're having a bad day don't read the comments.

And then a few of my past articles here on JooJoo Azad for those who like biting, sarcastic, and morbid c:

1. Overview of the Israel-Palestine Conflict: 5 Things You Should Know Now

2. 5 Ways to Take Action: Remembering the 1-yr Anniversary of the Bangladesh Factory Collapse

3. The Veil...Unveiled: Why I Chose to Cover My Hair

4. We're Not Terrorist, Yo

And, as my contribution last year to Blog Action Day:
5. The Fashion Industry's Inconvenient Truth

Have you posted/read anything recently you'd like to add to the list? Share with us!


~ l e a v e  a  r e p l y

edit: upon publishing this post I realize the title is a bit odd.


Photo: “Not Equal” by holeymoon on Flickr. Used under Creative Commons.


Wow. To be honest, I'm still quite in disbelief that the 2015 For The Sake of Fashion show happened (although, unfortunately, watching videos of myself speaking on my blog/social responsibility/the brands in the show and seeming like English was not my first language (which it is! I tend to mix up grammar and speak really quickly whilst public speaking which might make my audience assume things about my language skills) is harshly reminding me that it did, in fact take place). Well, at least the rest of the show went well! This was my first time co-hosting a fashion show and what better way to than to have the honor of working with Joseph, the president of the UNICEF Chapter at DePaul University; an amazing and so-helpful group of student volunteers; a talented make-up and dressing crew; on-point photographers; and a lovely cast of energetic models, all while raising money for an amazing organization!

So truly, thank you all for all of your hard work, and thank you for everyone who had the chance to make it out and support UNICEF and ethical fashion! You all are fabulous.

Above photo: Celebrating a successful show with Zach (left); and my brother Haneif and his wife, Samantha (right). Thanks you two for driving out from Michigan to watch the show! (Hehe it looks like a Christmas card!)
Below photo: T-1 hour before doors open!

We were able to showcase over 50 looks from 5 beautiful brands that are local to Chicago, support the education of young girls in developing countries, are ethically made and consciously produced, and/or use environmentally-friendly dies and fabrics. Thank you Le Dessein, Mata Traders, CLEON's Clothing, One Find Duo, and Anastasia Chatzka for not only allowing me to borrow your clothes to make the show possible, but for the wonderful work you are doing in the fashion industry. (I will be speaking more in-depth on each of these brands when posting up photos from the show on Friday, so stay tuned!)

Photos: Alex


ALSO! Just wanted to share that Blog Action Day 2014 is this Thursday, October 16th! Blog Action Day is an annual virtual event that brings together bloggers from around the world and in all different niches to come together to spread awareness on a single topic that is internationally important. (For an example check out my post last year on the topic of human rights: The Fashion Industry's Inconvenient Truth). This year, the focus is on Inequality, which has definitely unfortunately manifested itself in various shapes and sizes this past year especially, from Palestine to Ferguson. 
For all the bloggers, regardless of your niche I highly encourage you to register for this event here, as not only do you have the opportunity to learn from and meet other bloggers and grow your own readerbase, but also spread awareness on an issue that matters. If you need a bit of inspiration (and learn more about the beneficiary of the For The Sake of Fashion benefit runway show) you can read about so many global injustices on UNICEF's website to spark your writing. Not to mention that the beautiful organizers over at Blog Action Day also put together a list of post ideas to contribute to this year's action! (Honestly you have no excuse not to join! Get to it!) (: 
For all of the non-bloggers, you can still participate by reading the blog posts that speak to you and supporting the bloggers behind them by leaving them thoughtful comments, sharing their posts on your own social media (facebook walls, etc) and just by speaking on issues of inequality to your friends and family! 
My post (still a secret aka still need to think of something asap) will be going up Oct 16th so hope to see you back here then! 

Learn more about Blog Action Day 2014 by checking out their site:

P.S. Also, if you plan on participating, let me know and I will be more than glad to cross-promote your blog post on my social media! Looking forward to reading your posts! 




Yes, I know I've started a bit of a tradition putting together an instagram collection at the beginning of each month, welcoming the new and being confused on how fast the past flew by. But, as I had not been posting regularly on JooJoo Azad these past few weeks, this is sort of my half-baked excuse for why I had neglected posting and not following through posting regularly (as I said I would do basically every week--my bad). Classes here at UChicago actually just started last week, so technically I shouldn't be as sleepless as I am, but hey we don't say UChicago is "where fun comes to die" for nothing (yes, that's a thing).

Speaking of which, I really should get to bed. So I suppose this post will also need to be kept a bit short. I'll let the photos/captions do the talking~

From where I stand, wearing a manteau in Tehran, Iran (what is a manteau, you might ask? Check out this post!) | New internship downtown! | Slowly moving into my new apt--2 weeks have gone by but at least the clothes are up! | The Bongo Room aka the best place to get brunch in Chicago

Forcing the brosky to pose for a photo because he was looking particularly sharp | Magritte special exhibit at The Art Institute of Chicago! If you're in the area, you really must check it out! | Cold & wet days call for all-black | More photos from downtown because I think I actually missed the city. maybe.

My internship is filled with really great quotes | The Stromae concert was absolutely formidable | Post-Stromae art perusing again, at the Art Institute of Chicago | Okay yes I missed the downtown buildings that kiss the clouds

Dropping by Mata Traders HQ to pick up clothes for the For the Sake of Fashion 2014 benefit runway show! (Enter to win 2 front row tickets + dinner here!) | The sun setting in the city before the first day of classes *tears* | Zach being a lovely friend helping pick out (/modeling) clothing from OneFindDuo for the runway show! | Google Maps is the best at directing me on safe, un-sketchy routes 

Anywhoo, my bed is definitely calling my name--in the mean time keep an eye out for upcoming exciting collaborations with really amazing/socially-responsible brands, a mini tour around the apt, and more backlogged shoots from Morocco!

Also, check out the rest of le photos from le Instagram here!  





Collaborated with local talent Youssef Harzy Photography to produce a little shoot exploring one of Rabat's beautiful monuments. (Yes, I'm still backlogged with photos from Morocco (...from 3 months ago..) --I will probably finish posting all of these shoots from Morocco by the time I return again in less than 3 months (eep!)) 

The Hassan Tower (for which I posted a few other photos from in this post) in Rabat are the remains of an ancient mosque that was started in around 1195 and never completed. Sort of like most things I try to start in my life.  

Sorry for the short post but I got to run to class--hope you enjoy the photos! Also I know I promised a new apt tour soonish, so that is in the near(er) future! Right after my desk chair comes in the mail...(so probably never). I'm also in the middle of working with a few really amazing socially-responsible brands that I can't wait to share with you, so stay tuned! c;

Don't forget to check out (& like) Youssef Harzy's facebook page, here to see more of his photography around Morocco!

{ Photos: Youssef Harzy Photography | Location: Hassan Tower, Rabat, Morocco | Leggings: c/o Macys | Blouse: Zara | Skirt: Local | Boots: c/o Zappos | Rings: H&M }
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Hope to see you at the UNICEF For the Sake of Fashion 2015 benefit runway show October 12th!
Enter to win 2 front row tickets (+ dinner) here


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