KARACHI: Fashion designers and their muses have taken over the Fashion Pakistan (FP) Council-based FP Winter Gala red carpet, posing and giving interviews to host Anoushay Ashraf in a kaleidoscopic display of fashion hungama with photographers, bloggers and social media creators and influencers frenzily clicking away at the fashion imagery on offer, something that had all but vanished in these crazy and uncertain Covid-19-infested times.
Away from the hullabaloo of the lounge and the red carpet, matters inside the ramp area set-up in the hall of the Beach Luxury Hotel on Thursday were much calmer and streamlined as ushers saw the fashionistas to their name-tagged front-row seats, providing them an excellent view and a vantage point to witness the live fashion unfolding before their very eyes, while the other invitees and guests weaved their way between aisles to their seats in the rows further away from the runway.
A hushed silence always descends on the show area just before the opening act in anticipation of the fashion drama about to unfold on the ramp. No doubt, for the runway is a place of revere for those directly associated with the business and true meaning of fashion. It’s an awe-inspiring moment when a designer’s vision what fashion is to him/her, materialises right in front of your very eyes, and irrespective of the fact whether it’s a hit or a miss, it’s still breathtaking to behold and demands the respect of serious fashion-mongers and movers and shakers of the style and fashion industry.
Once the shows are under way, with designers rolling out back-to-back ensembles on lithe, sinewy and fashion-savvy models from the hidden confines of the backstage where every possible kind of mayhem and frenzy may ensue, it’s easy for onlookers to get carried away in the romanticism, tempo and fervour until the very last of the models exit the ramp and make their way backstage, only to return for the designer’s curtain call as confetti cannons and sparklers spew their content at the edge of the runway. The imagery is a staple at all fashion shows and weeks, one that has been sorely missed during the coronavirus pandemic-hit times, while trapped within the confines of locked doors at homes.
Six designers showcased at the FP Winter Gala with Maheen Khan opening the show with her sleek-looking collection bearing her tell-tale signature look by coupling elegance and style with comfort. Black button-down shirts in pastels and truck art-inspired saris and sari dresses paired with tastefully embellished tulip pants and smartly crafted tops mostly defined the collection. The segment featured handbags by Jafferjees.
Zaaviay’s ‘New Dawn’ with its seemingly over-the-top and gawdily embellished outfits appeared extremely confused in its style aesthetics. It put everything bling-worthy on the ramp and yet nothing exceptionally noteworthy stood out.
Menswear designer Sameer Sain put a twist on suits in terms of texture, self-prints and accessories which worked more oft than not. The fur and fur-lined jacket look may have been a wee bit extreme but if making a style statement was on the designer’s mind at the time of conceiving the collection, then it was a triumph.
Hina Mirza’s urban wardrobe in chequered flannel prints with lace trimmings around the wrists and army camp boots captured the essence of youthful rebellion against the norm, and made a definite city girl style statement. Even her crisp cotton numbers in muted tones stood out for sheer ingenuity and urban appeal.
Aamna Aqeel’s totally western wacky silhouettes seemed a little rough around the edges but the more simplistic cuts hinted at flashes of master craftsmanship. The parrot green and canary yellow numbers stood out among all the rest. The simpler, the better was the way to go for this collection. Better luck to the designer next time though.
Zohaib Jubileo’s bespoke menswear stuck to kurta pajamas with high-waisted jackets and the more traditional front open sherwani cuts. A few pieces here and there experimented with individuality and freedom of artistic expression. Overall, not a bad runway debut.
Arizai by Atiya, and what she termed as spiritual fashion, had monk capes and black and beige tops with seemingly spiritual embroidered motifs which really didn’t do much for the collection, or for the designer for that matter. Playing it this safe is never a good idea, especially for the finale show.
The make-up and hairstyling of the models for the FP Gala was by Nabila’s and N-Gents with media management and coordination by Faisal Kapadia.
Published in Dawn, December 4th, 2021