Fashion scene in Pakistan needs a bit of a rejuvenation since the designers are producing a lot of same ol same ol. Designers need to understand that people are going to wear with what options they are presented with and thus need to reassess what their presentations are consisting of. Innovation, creativity and commerce all need to come together. While some made a splash at this season”s Fashion Pakistan Week 2017, some failed to do so.
The school is usually one’s playground. One should have enjoy what they are doing as after graduation, one tends to fall in a diaspora of commercial aspects of the profession they are in. Since after graduation, one tends to cater to what the world and market dictates, during one’s school, one who has fun with it, will enjoy it to the hilt despite the results. However this time around the presentations by emerging talents were outright outrageous (in a good way) and fun and it looked like, while they put their blood and sweat into it, they had fun with it and it was all worth it, the moment their garments walked the runway.
Hamza Bokhari‘s WHITE OWL definitely soared high. Inspired by the native American’s tribal culture as well as the snowy owl, he checked all the boxes needed to deserve that spot. Collaborated with an artist (the red indian on the ballgown was done by Ayesha Siddiqa), Drama, showed a range of ensembles, had his inspiration come through in his silhouettes (the owl in those fur jackets is hard to miss even for a blind person). Using materials like rabbit fur, organza, silks, Bokhari had beadwork highlighting details of his garments. I liked the printed jumpsuit that was worn under a fur jacket. Also the ball gown was a visual treat on the runway (what’s fashion without a little bit of drama 😉 ). A designer majorly to look forward to, to see what he does when he does a solo debut show.
Mahgul Rashid: The poet with an edgy dark soul was what came to my mind when her collection sashayed down the runway. Already displaying a flair for edgy-ness combined with commercial aspect of business, Mahgul seems to know where she is heading. Would definitely like to see what she comes up with, if she were to extend this to a full collection. Inspired by ‘old photographs from the Civil and Military Gazette’ she aimed to bring in ‘traditional aesthetics into modern context’. Using Stretch Denim, Cotton, Satin and Organza, Mahgul’s structured jackets and easy separates impressed all. The appliqued black on black bolero, the digital prints, the altered Jinnah caps, the sheer jacket all came together for an interesting capsule collection by this young designer.
Arooj Ahmed: Inspired by the Mandarain fish, Arooj Ahmed’s collection played up with the prints and textures inspired by the fish. Using synthetic lama, accompanied by organza was used to develop this collection. Playing up with the sheer trend, the collection had printed organza, in colors of blues and oranges, which helped in translating her delicate marine inspiration onto the canvas of clothes. The translucency, the texture was all there yet for me there was something a miss. The semi circle dress with panels ending in frill going around the dress gave me deja vu of the Valentino Vera farmiga wore at Oscars. Liked the acrylic bangles and highlighted eyes.
Schehrezade Muzammil‘s neo nomadic collection was inspired by ‘study of different nomadic cultures around the globe, particularly of the nomadic tribes of Mongolia..’ A womenswear collection, the collection had some interesting drapes incorporated in a basic silhouettes shape, combined with ombre effects and abstract foil and digital prints , made for some interesting pieces that bordered on being edgy while within constraints. Using latex jerseys, leather and
polyester blends, Ms. Muzammil’s collection brought forth loose and draped nomadic vibe into much more controlled way. Young, hip and interesting, though it lacked the drama of Hamza Bokhari or darkness of Mahgul, it more than made up for it in its practicality. Loved the print on the grey pants and the blue and grey steel top with it. Loved the quirky traveller touch of the goggles.
Sustainable fashion is something that I personally endorse and love the concept of a greener fashion. Therefore Syed Mohsin Ali‘s collection was one I was particularly looking forward to. And he did not disappoint at all. Being a textile graduate, I am well aware of the challenges Mohsin would have faced in producing the woven details on the garment and how intricately were they done. Inspired from the craft of basketry, Mohsin produced silhouettes that reflected that and texture that was one of the major highlights for me during this segment in neutral tones. The fabrics that Mohsin used were made with ‘environmentally friendly custom-made fibres, extracted from substances such as bamboo, organic cotton, soybean, milk, tencel, air cell and corn.’ An impressive feat by a youngster to take up the green cause, and in turn producing some interestingly garments.
Global culture inspired Danial Mubarak’s collection, fused in different cultures presenting interesting silhouettes that showed off inspirations that were incorporated in hybrid looks. Using some bold patterns, and an earthy color palette, Danial aimed at combining ‘different cultures and their identities’ in an aesthetic manner. While he succeeded on some occasions, a few stumbles happened too, but then it was his first collection, and that too a group showing, so one can let it pass. While the Kimono with the shawl collar didn’t quite work well, his rest of the pieces were interesting. The drop crotch shalwar, the kimono (hard to miss) inspired, the log shaped bag (LOVED that quirky piece of accessory) and the jacket and the sari looked pretty much worked for me. While one of the faculties, Ahsan Nazir, presented at FPW using similar theme, comparatively, it was definitely Danial who succeeded much more in putting his point across.
These young talents definitely showed promise and it is waited to be seen where do they head out from here on.
*Image courtesy Faisal Farooqui and his team at Dragonfly