Celebrating Women: 10 Questions with Nurul Ain Idris

Making a difference.

Introducing Nurul Ain Idris, a remarkable individual who has gained recognition for her creative mind and visually stunning mastery of her craft.

Her creative prowess in the industry has earned her admiration from many – us included. In our opinion, Nai is a true powerhouse, determined to create a positive impact in the world.

 

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As the lead designer at Design Bloc Studio, a director at Omar Ali Bespoke, and the founder of Studio Nai, she has established herself as the powerhouse to get acquainted with right now. Along with her professional roles, she is also a part-time content creator and a mental health advocate. 

We sat down with Nai for a quick chat about her biggest achievements, challenges and inspiration. Read on to uncover more about her!

Everything to know about Nurul Ain Idris and her creative impact on the industry:

How would you describe yourself in a few words?

I am an imaginative, spicy, and perfectly imperfect individual.

 

You hold many roles; tell us a little about what you do. 

Primarily, I am the lead designer at Design Bloc Studio, a creative agency specialising in brand activations, an alliance of artistry. Additionally, I serve as a director at Omar Ali Bespoke, overseeing all design aspects of the brand.

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I am also the founder of Studio Nai, a lifestyle studio I opened up before the pandemic, that has become home to both international and local brands and individuals. Alongside these roles, I engage in part-time content creation and advocate for mental health.

 

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Amazing! We love your creative vision; how do you ensure your work stays on point? 

Balancing multiple roles can be challenging, but with proper delegation and time management, maintaining the vision’s quality is achievable. I firmly believe in the power of a well-organised schedule and giving your 111%. Passion always remains key, regardless of project size. To ensure my work stays on point, I must also be at the top of my game mentally and physically.

 

What are the main challenges as a women entrepreneur today? 

Today, as a female entrepreneur, overcoming gender barriers remains a significant challenge. Even in 2024, certain masculine attitudes are still necessary for being taken seriously in business. I started out as an architect in a male-dominated firm. As a young woman, I had to be competitive and direct. I realise now I need not to be, once I show what I can do, I have nothing else to prove. Dealing with the fear of failure is another hurdle, but failure is often a stepping stone to learning and growth.

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What are your biggest achievements so far? 

My most significant achievement has been giving back to the community that supported me wholeheartedly. At 23, my partners and I established an NGO called Neospice and conducted mental health programs in schools across Klang Valley. We addressed severe mental health issues and abuse among children. A memorable moment was hosting a public panel discussion at the Joke Factory with Hannah Yeoh and Harith Iskandar when mental health was still a taboo topic. In essence, turning my dreams into reality stands out as my most significant achievement.

 

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Who inspires you?

The inspiring women in my life, including my grandmothers, mother, and aunts, serve as my sources of strength and resilience. They have gracefully navigated challenges in both family and business realms, handling tasks traditionally associated with men while keeping our family united.

 

Let’s talk fashion – can you describe your fashion style in one word? 

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Uncomfortable. I prioritise looking good even when feeling uncomfortable. While I appreciate a casual maxi skirt and oversized t-shirt, I love to play dress up. Fashion is very subjective and personal. I don’t ever believe there’s such thing as a “bad fashion sense”, the best fashion to me, is fashion without any rules.

 

What is that one song that you constantly have on repeat? 

The song “Superwoman” by Alicia Keys resonated with me when I was fourteen during a formative period, motivating me to accomplish my dreams. However, it also reminds me that there is always room for growth and further achievements. I still play it every single morning before I head out to work.

 

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Do you have a favourite quote?

The grass is greener where you water it,” highlighting the importance of nurturing and investing in what truly matters.

 

What advice would you give to women entrepreneurs? 

My advice is to embrace bravery in both action and inaction. Be confident and resilient, yet remember to show compassion and kindness to yourself.

Amalina Anuar is the Digital Director of Harper's Bazaar Malaysia. From covering the latest runway trends to the hottest happenings in Kuala Lumpur, she also delves deep into all things lifestyle and beauty.