We were told about the launch of the glossy Henna by friend Pablo Ganguli, cultural impresario, and organiser of Kitab festivals in India (the next one is in Delhi, so Delhiites watch out!) and a slew of other festivals in other parts of the world including Russia, Argentina, and god alone knows where else. The people behind the cool looking glossy with a strikingly attractive front cover design are Pablo himself, Meena and Shim Khalid, the London-born Pakistani-origin publisher of the magazine.
Shim Khalid was born in London in the early 1970’s. After leaving school at sixteen, he became a part of the family business alongside his brother Fukhera, helping it grow from a family grocery store in Leyton East London to a multi million pound cash and carry business.
In 2004, Shim moved into the licensing business and bought the infamous Kabaret Night club in London’s Soho. Shim re-launched it as Kabaret’s Prophecy, commissioned world renowned Interior Designer and architect David Collins to create a ground breaking interior, as well as enlisting the design talents of Jamie Hewlett (co- creator of Gorillaz) to design brand new characters exclusive to the club. In its first year, Kabaret’s Prophecy won the accolade of World’s Best Nightclub as voted by Wallpaper Magazine, UK’s Cocktail Bar of the Year by the Independent Newspaper and was dubbed the ultimate luxury play den attracting the world’s biggest celebrities and spenders alike.
The glossy looking Henna magazine, which has oodles of whatchamacallit “oomph,” affords us a peep into the minds of sexy Asian-origin models and celebrities. I don’t know names, but the first issue includes Supermodel Veronica Webb who features in a main fashion editorial together with a Q&A with NY designer Rachael Roy. Other highlights include Robert Thurman, father of Uma and a leading authority on Tibetan Buddhism, an interview with George Clooney, and Natasha Law talking about her first exhibition soon to open in Mumbai. Initially it was the idea of Shim’s brother Fukhera but being the more fashion conscious of the two, the task fell to Shim to work up the initial concept of the magazine, appoint an editorial and design team and move things forward.
Shim’s ultimate vision for the magazine is to produce a beautiful, coffee table style magazine with intelligent, sexy, thought provoking, and humorous content that would appeal to today’s modern British Asians.
All the very best, Henna!