About Lily Shams

I began my line of T-shirts somewhat accidentally. In the summer of 2010, I had an art opening entitled 'Expression Through Fashion', exhibiting my drawings and paintings of women wearing clothing which fused traditional Persian imagery with modern Western attire. The paintings included traditional Persian textiles, ancient Iranian imagery, and were accented by a touch of Persian Calligraphy. I drew the faces of some of my favorite modern Iranian poets on the shirts of many of the models.

Poets like Forough Farokhzad, Simin Behbahani, Sorhrab Sepehri, Akhavan Sales, and Siavash Kasraii – who's poetries dealt with the concepts of love and freedom- graced my paintings with their beautiful essences.

That evening at the exhibit, a girlfriend who happened to be the daughter of one of the poets, brought me a gift of my paintings printed on simple white T-shirts. They were an instant hit among the people who had come to see my art show, and that's when I decided to make my paintings of my clothing designs into actual wearable fashion.

These T-shirts are timeless fashion with the intricacies of ancient Persian works of art. If one looks closely, the word eshgh (love) is seen on the models' accessories, sometimes on the background. For example, the piece with Forough Farokhzad's image has eshgh repeatedly written like a soft wind, infusing the air with love. The symbol for the number "5" in Persian looks like a heart turned on its head; this symbol appears on a number of places, sometimes as cufflinks. The pattern of jighe (paisley) – an ancient Persian pattern- appears often, sometimes on the models' skirts, hats, or jewelry.

A fusion of ancient Persian art and modern Western fashion, my T-shirts are my way of bridging the gab between Iran and the West. And, as with all my artwork, each one has copyright protection.

Contact Information

Phone: 310.613.5756

Email: lily@lilyshams.com