Hi Aishah! Let’s start with an intro. Who is Aishah Mokhtar? :)
Hello there! My name is Aishah Mokhtar, an Architectural Designer based in Kuala Lumpur. I’m also a mother of a 3 years old cheeky boy, a wife to an Architect and a full time gardener at our little home.
What do you do for a living?
I am an Educator/Designer where I am lecturing in Architecture Schools around Kuala Lumpur, working on personal design projects and commissioned artworks. I also have my little plant shop called Greenlab.my where I curate plants for my customers' home/space.
I understand that you're a mother, a lecturer and you just started your green project! What made you decide to start this journey?
We have a very small space between our living area and outdoor garden and I thought it would be perfect for a green sun room. The space started to grow alongside our garden and that’s when I decided to start Greenlab and share the joy of gardening with others.
Some tips for someone that's starting on their plant-mum life, what/where can they start with?
It’s always a good choice to start being a plant parent! My advice would be start with the easy to care plants and do a little bit of finding out about plant care. Get a few plant types that are suitable for your home especially that are kids/pets friendly for indoor plants and start growing your plants collection from there. If some of the plants didn’t make it in your care, don’t be discouraged as it’s all the process of learning!
Architecture is quite a big scope of study and many say that it can relate to a lot of things, how do you reckon it relates to your green project?
Architecture definitely inspired me in everything I do, having to grow up in a family of Architects, married to one (I know!), also now teaching Architecture. It has taught me to look into different perspectives and that inspiration comes in many forms.
My latest Installation Design titled Botanical Haven was my personal ode to our green oasis, where it was inspired by our little garden space in hope to unveil the beauty of everyday space.
Botanical Haven by Aishah Mokhtar (2020)
What were some lessons your parents instilled in you in all the hobbies you do and in life?
Finding a hobby or activities to do other than Architecture was very important for me. My father is an Architect too but at the same time he also paints (and very good at it as well). I just love to see the calmness when he paints so effortlessly and I wanted to have the same feeling. So gardening became my way of having peace of mind.
Tropical Series painting by my father now a centrepiece in our home.
How has the MCO and working from home treating you?
We are just fortunate enough to have a career and type of job that allows us to work from home. MCO means that my family and I can spend more time at home together as compared to our usual hectic everyday routine. Having an indoor garden have its charms where working from home can be comforting when you have a tropical lush green surrounding you.
Being everything that you are; what is the most rewarding thing you feel with everything that you do everyday? What do you love most about it?
Being an educator gives me such joy having to see my students grow to be a confident designer. Having to share the joy of gardening with others is a delight and most of all motherhood as the most rewarding act where you learn to appreciate the little moments/present as to worries about what comes next.
Do you have a mantra you live by to stay motivated everyday?
I believe if I can get at least 1 checklist done in my day to do list, I will consider it as a winning situation. Some days can be overwhelming, but if I at least did my morning run or make the bed in the morning, I’m already content. Focus on the small wins helps me to stay motivated everyday.
You've been with us on our journey for years now! How did you first get to know Whimsigirl and how has it helped you?
I’ve been admiring Whimsigirl design since it was a tiny shop in Publika where it used to sell only children’s attire and when the first women capsule collection launched, I was hooked!
When I was lost in the land of motherhood right after the birth of my son, most of the days felt dark and hopeless but I remember that one day, Whimisgirl launched a capsule collection back in 2018 and the campaign made me wanted to look and feel beautiful again, so I decided to purchase a few of the pieces and it just marks the beginning of my motherhood attire. Chic and comfortable, that’s all I need for my everyday wear now.
The early days of motherhood with Whimsigirl, where some days you have spilled milk on your shirt or messy crumpled scarf and that’s okay.