By Johara Al Mogbel
Introducing our favorite fashion makers from around the GCC.
If you want to be a designer, stylist, editor, or even blogger you have to get into it with the intention of excelling without losing the integrity of your product, even if that product is yourself.
Part architect, part genius, and all around brilliant maker, Alaa Alghufaili managed to successfully mix Islamic geometry and laser cutting to produce some of the prettiest wood-based objects this side of the globe. From speakers, to necklaces and clutches, we want to own almost everything in the product line. The branding is spot on, too. Represent Saudi Arabia, woot!
From Bahrain, we have this luxury handbag line. Founded by Sofia Alasfoor and endorsed by the likes of the Overdressed, the handbags (dubbed Shields) have already cultivated a loyal following. Sofia herself has quite the background, having been taught and trained at London College of Fashion, Parsons New York and Istituto Europeo di Design. The bags are a wee bit overpriced, but if you want to carry a bespoke Arabic designed purse, this is it.
With so many purported clothing lines out there, it can get a little difficult to stand out. But The Kayys, a brand founded by three Qatari sisters, managed to shine with streamlined silhouettes and a wearable collection. The resort 2015 collection was a bit of a miss, but there’s no less than three looks in their spring/summer collection that we would totally love to wear, and that doesn’t happen very often with us.
The Good Vibe
Being the silent country of the region, we aren’t that familiar with the Omani fashion scene. So imagine our pleasant surprise when we found out about The Good Vibe. An urban street culture brand, we love their no nonsense attitude and their galaxy print snapbacks, we won’t lie. And it’s unique to the peninsula, which we think is pretty cool. Their flagship store is in Qurum at the Masa Mall, for anyone interested. Here’s to them going global soon!
The UAE was another tough one, excelling in jewelry and the like. One that stood out though was Shamsa Alabbar, a graphic designer who used her skills to make beautiful jewelry inspired by Arabic typography. Personally, we’re head over heels for her single letter necklaces. Tres chic.
It was so hard to choose just one option from Kuwait. We don’t know what it is about the country that makes it happen, but there’s quite a number of businesses who’ve started out strong with branding, quality, and design. The one that caught our eye though was Liudmila. Founded by Najeeba Hayat and produced in Italy, we can safely say it is the only proper footwear business in the region. And we are so in love with the navy Leandra and the burgundy Baba in Bordeaux it’s not even funny.