Fashionistas are spoilt for choice this Ramadan with a growing number of labels releasing seasonal modest-fashion collections, aimed at the social gatherings that are an inherent part of the Holy Month; special designs that combine conservative silhouettes with Arabesque aesthetics.
Parisian label Ingie Paris, for example, has launched a limited-edition collection comprised of just three gowns. It nods to Middle Eastern design elements while keeping the French-inspired DNA of the luxury fashion house intact with the use of rich lamé and damassé textures, and feminine embellishments. But what makes these dresses really special is its unique customization option with Swarovski crystal artworks.
“Ramadan and Eid provide multiple social occasions such as iftars and suhoors, therefore women are continuously on the lookout for beautifully elegant designs,” Ingie Chalhoub, founder and designer, told Arab News. “Throughout my collection, I focused on relating vividly my love for Middle Eastern styles and the classic Ramadan trends of sophistication and glamor.”
Moroccan-French designer Selma Benomar is no stranger to Ramadan collections. She focuses on luxury kaftans and said the versatile garment is in especially high demand during Ramadan. “I believe that the Holy Month is almost an independent season for fashion trends each year,” she said.
With a color palette taking inspiration from nature as well as runway trends, and a process that preserves the authentic traditions of kaftan making, the Dubai-based designer has created a covetable collection that is big on femininity.
“I personally love the comeback of minimalism, with the predominance of whites and pastel shades,” said Benomar on trends that are dominating this season. “While there are no set rules, Ramadan-focused collections naturally have looser styles — with full or bell sleeves — and longer hems. Accents such as ruffles, and finishing touches including lush embroidery, ornamental details such as crystals, and usually an intricate belt add the perfect regal touch.”
Also riffing on embroidery and opulent fabrics while experimenting with modern silhouettes is Emirati designer Fidda AlMarzoqi who founded made-to-measure label Cabochon in 2016.
Describing her Ramadan 2018 collection, she said, “We stay true to our Arab roots, but add a playful modern twist suitable for women of all generations. This year we used two types of fabric in our Ramadan kaftans — Jacquard and soft crêpe de chine. While the Jacquard kaftans are quite dressy and feature delicate hand embroidery, the others are made out of custom-printed fabrics and are lighter to wear.”
It’s not just regional designers tapping into seasonal demand either. Several high street brands are pushing outfits tailored to Ramadan’s busy social calendar.
Affordable fashion brand Max launched its inaugural abaya line, “Reem,” this year. It features designs in classic black, or elegant colors such as burgundy and blue, with lace trims and floral embroidery.
Parisian label ba&sh, meanwhile, has launched an exclusive capsule collection for the region, offering maxi dresses, long skirts and ruffled blouses in a color palette featuring nudes and earth tones. Flowing fabrics and floral prints add a feminine touch.
Iconic American brand Guess’s Ramadan collection stands out with its bold, nature-inspired prints and draped silhouettes across separates including flowing skirts, tops, and kaftans, while UK brand River Island has produced a limited-edition line featuring 40 key styles including dresses, jumpsuits and separates. From glamorous eveningwear in strong colors featuring embellishments and bold prints, to the ‘Haute Allure’ edit of floral patterns, soft ruffles and Bardot frills, it offers something for everyone.
Venerable department store Marks & Spencer offers a selection of iftar-appropriate occasion-wear including tailored tops and layered dresses in flattering fits with jeweled embellishments, in statement colors such as burgundy and magenta.
The UAE’s homegrown online fashion store Raworange.com has introduced special pieces for Ramadan that include a range of trendy, quirky designs — from kimonos and lacy dresses to military jackets — at great value prices.
Popular e-tailer Namshi has curated an elegant Ramadan edit of dresses, abayas, and kaftans, plus statement accessories, from regional and global labels including Anotah, Haya’s Closet, and Mela London.
And if you like to try before you buy, Dubai boutique O Concept Store hosts a Ramadan pop-up every year showcasing avant-garde international designers including Faraasha, and Theia the Label.
This year marks the first time that contemporary fashion brand Bebe has launched a Ramadan capsule collection made up of elegant abayas and kaftans that celebrate the festive mood with chiffons, sequins, and lace. Sharing a similar aesthetic is eveningwear specialists BCBG Maxazria's luxurious Holy Month collection.
With such a diverse range on offer – from haute couture to fast fashion – having a stylish Ramadan just got a whole lot easier. And while trends and collections may vary, what remains constant is the Arab woman’s penchant for creatively styling her look to achieve a unique effect at each iftar or suhour party.
This article has been adapted from its original source.
Copyright: Arab News © 2019 All rights reserved.