Many Bangladeshi immigrants have been making the country proud by flying our flag on foreign soil time and again. Their achievements and success fill us with inspiration and pride.
Recently Meer Said, a Bangladeshi immigrant living in the Belgian capital Brussels achieved success that certainly has made us proud.
He has received an official certificate as recognition of his skill in managing the weighty responsibility of managing the outfits of the Belgian royal family. Usually this honour is bestowed upon the worthiest company or individual only after they have had worked for five years.
Although Meer had received the recognition in 2020, the ceremony was held a bit late due to the pandemic. The news of his boutique ‘Meer Couture’ set in Brussels, receiving this honour got extensive coverage in the Belgian media.
He spoke exclusively to Haal Fashion in Bangladesh about his life and success story too.
Meer Said, a free spirit by nature, had gone to Kuwait as an embroiderer towards the very beginning of his career. From there he moved to Qatar. But, he became tired of the Middle Eastern life of rules and regulations.
Later, he arrived in Europe, first in Italy and then in France. He struggled for a while, but was determined to settle down. He arrived in Belgium, as a stepping stone to move on to the UK.
But instead he began in Belgium from 1996 under political asylum as the simple Belgian lifestyle had started growing on him.
Not many Bengalis were to be found living in Belgium back then. Using his past work experience and overcoming hurdles like the language , he started working with different clothing companies.
There Meer Said used to work as an employee in a company that made clothes of various brands. At one point, he made a name for himself and brought great fame to his company by working on an extremely exclusive and classy outfit for Louis Vuitton in 2000.
Many others were hesitant to take on that project. However, in Meer’s words, Bengalis are tremendously courageous. Plus, there wasn’t any fear left in him after walking along so many difficult roads in life.
He went on to work on projects of many renowned fashion houses including Giorgio Armani, Hermes, Dior, Chanel, Prada and Gucci. And, since 1998 he has been involved with the fitting of outfits for the members of Belgian royal family on behalf of different boutiques.
Later in life, right when Meer had made a place for himself in his work arena by dint of his talent, efficiency and immense hard work, he had some disagreements with the boutique-owner and so started his own boutique, renting a tiny shop in Brussels.
Because of his previous achievements and reputation, he found work within just a few days. In between making and altering outfits for all the world-famous boutiques, he got a call from the royal family.
He took over the daunting duty of finalising the planning, design and fitting of the clothes for the royal family. At one stage, the Belgian royal family started wearing clothes fashioned out of Meer’s designs on various significant events or foreign tours.
The blazer worn by Belgian king Philippe during his India tour in 2014 marks the beginning of Meer managing the overall responsibility of royal family’s clothing.
Meer, who is talented, highly capable and quick to learn, didn’t pay much attention to studies in his childhood. However, he had mastered various vocational trainings including the art of tailoring at a very young age.
At one point in his life, after staying in Kuwait for some time and enhancing his embroidery and sewing skills, he returned home, for he didn’t like the work environment there.
Due to his restless nature, Meer went back to Middle East again, but this time he chose Qatar as his destination. And then his Europe journey began.
However, after opening up his own boutique in Brussels he never had to look back again. Because of his reputation, he has worked with all the renowned fashion brands like Giorgio Armani, Chanel, Prada, Louis Vuitton, Gucci and Hermes. He worked on the designs, making and altering of all their exclusive collections.
Apart from the royals of Belgium, Meer has worked on the fitting of clothes for the royal families of Luxembourg and Netherlands as well.
Meer, who lives in Brussels with his wife Razia Sultana and three daughters, doesn’t have any regrets in life. He is happy with his accomplishments in life.
Giorgio Armani and Tom Ford are on his list of favourite designers. In fact, he has met them in person as well.
Meer said there is no such scope for him to work in Bangladesh under the current circumstance. However, he certainly deserves our respect and well wishes for glorifying the name of Bangladesh on international level through his work. Meer Couture is making a name in the European world of haute couture.
Photo: Courtesy of Meer Said.
*This report appeared in the online website, Haal Fashion and has been rewritten in English by Nourin Ahmed Monisha.