The Fashion Orientalist sat down with Arabic singer Teema to talk fashion and music. Teema is a Moroccan/Dutch music artist who developed a passion for singing at a young age. She attended the Music School of Amsterdam at the age of 11 and was introduced to Arabic music at the age of 14, after her mother gifted her a compilation CD of famous Arabic singer Fairouz. Teema started out as a singer in R&B group Damez, but decided to go solo to focus on her Arabic background by singing in Arabic. Teema has build quite a resumé as a singer in the Netherland but also in Europe, performing in Denmark and Turkey. We asked her a few questions about her fashion and beauty choices as a musical artist and her future projects.
As an artist looks are quite important, could you tell us more about your style as a performer and as a person?
I don’t really have a particular style. It depends on the venue and location what I will be wearing that evening. If it’s a big stage set up and I am singing Arabic classical music, then I prefer to wear elegant, long dresses and opt for a more traditional style. I used to spend a lot of money on evening dresses for my performances. This didn’t really work out after a while, so I decided to work together with upcoming designers instead.
You are of Moroccan/Dutch descent, does your heritage influence your style and the way you dress?
My Moroccan background doesn’t really affect my image and style on stage. I can wear anything as long I feel comfortable in it. My music is a fusion of Arabic and Jazz, when it comes to clothing I do try to showcase those different elements when I’m putting together my performance outfit. For photo shoots I prefer a more natural look.
You work together with different upcoming designers who dress you for performances, could you tell us more about these collaborations?
I love working with upcoming talent. I have worked with two Moroccan designers in The Netherlands; Siham Tib and La Femme Chic. These designers create modern clothing with an Arabic touch, which makes them unique. I like the fusion between Arabic and Western clothing styles.
Which other designers would you love to wear?
The designer that I would love to work with one day is the very artistic and talented Aziz Bekkaoui from Amsterdam. Lebanese Elie Saab and the Moroccan designer Said Mahrouf are also on my list.
What are your favorite beauty products?
I don’t really use make up on daily basis. My make up kit consists of four products; Mac concealer and foundation, mascara and lipstick.
Do you have any beauty tips for our readers?
The only true beauty is inner beauty, I always say. We should all take care of ourselves from inside. I used to be an acne patient. I used every product on the market. Changing my food habit was the only true cure that actually helped. Drink two liters of water every day, drink fruit and vegetable shakes. Chia seeds and Hemp seeds also helped a lot.
Could you tell us more about the projects you are working on right now?
2012 was really a hard year from me as I lost my voice due to a lump on my vocal cords. I was told by the doctor to have surgery to remove the lumps, but I chose not to go forward with the procedure. I did not want to risk damaging my vocal cards permanently. Now I am trying to reduce the lumps by not speaking for a longer period or by changing the way I talk. This way I am recovering bit by bit. Doing short performances is all my voice can take at this moment, it is a good solution until I feel fit enough to do shows on a regular basis again. I’m using this time to write and compose my new musical repertoire.
The Fashion Orientalist wishes Teema all the best on her road to recovery and hope to hear her new music very soon!
Photography by Nassim Photography (1,2), Mathieu van Ek (3)
For more information about this talented singer visit: https://www.facebook.com/teemamusic