Fashion DNA is a designer mentorship for emerging Pakistani designers organised by the British Council. The programme takes the format of a year-long intensive training, including face to face sessions, online sessions, UK catwalk shows and showcasing, Pakistani catwalk shows and showcasing. In addition to the mentorship, designers are invited to apply their new skills through the production of a ready-to-wear collection with a clear brand positioning with a capsule collection presented at UK-based Fashion Scout during A/W 2016 London Fashion Week that took place in February and the full collection at Pakistan Fashion Week in Karachi in April 2016.
While in London, designers participated in the Centre for Fashion Enterprise’s Market Entry Bootcamp and engage and potentially collaborate with UK designers. In addition to the designer mentorship, the British Council is pleased to open up masterclasses by the UK mentors for public registration in Pakistan. For this first round, UK mentors included Ruby Hoette (MA Fashion, Goldsmiths College), Toby Meadows (Author of How to Set Up and Run a Fashion Label),Malcolm Newbery (Malcolm Newbery Consulting) and Rebekah Roy (Stylist). Pakistani designers include Akif Mahmood, the House of Kamiar Rokni, Wardha Saleem and Zaheer Abbas.
It aims to bring together UK and Pakistani fashion industries to help grow and strengthen our understandings of each other’s different design cultures, while supporting the development of emerging designers.
The House of Kamiar Rokni
Launched in late 2007, The House of Kamiar Rokni is among Pakistan’s premier fashion design houses. The brand strives to provide an immaculate essence of style in all their creations, designing signature one of a kind pieces that evoke a sense of individuality and elegance in the people that wear them. The Houses’ core philosophy is to embrace art, culture and imagination in their fashion. The brand is led by design powerhouses Kamiar Rokni, Tia Noon and Rehan Bashir, all of whom hail from quintessentially aristocratic families that are symbolic of an old world charm and traditional heritage. Indeed the trio’s diverse backgrounds shine through the label’s clothing, representing a seamless amalgamation of a combined seraiki history and cultural diversity that the three have inherited.
The luxury label’s prêt-à-porter and Haute Couture collections have consistently hit the runways in Karachi, Islamabad and Lahore in Pakistan to critical acclaim, be it at the prestigious PFDC Sunsilk Fashion Weeks in Lahore and Karachi, Fashion Pakistan Week in Karachi, Islamabad Fashion Week or Boutique shows with haute fashion retailers Ensemble and the Brazilian Embassy in Pakistan. In Pakistan, the brand also collaborated with textile giant Bonanza to introduce a line of limited edition voile prints. Internationally, the fashion house has showcased in Paris at the Prêt-à-porter Feminine, Mauritius Fashion Week and at the Paris-Lahore-Karachi show in Paris itself. Further, the label had the much coveted honour of having won an award at Pakistan’s biggest style awards, the Lux Style Awards, in the best Luxury Prêt wear category (2012) and The House was also awarded the first ever Libas Heritage Award at the PFDC Sunsilk Fashion Week for their inspired approach of turning traditional craft into contemporary fashion.
The Wardha Saleem label is known for its unique colour play, intricate figurative embellishments and contemporary print design. The brand’s vision is vibrant, young and eclectic. Fusing indigenous embroideries, vibrant colours and traditional printing techniques with a modern sensibility; allowing our customers to express their individuality and be playful with their style. A proud Pakistani Fashion Label heavily inspired by the vibrant culture of the country, the brand is committed to showcase the brighter side of its homeland through its design philosophy that is happy, playful and free spirited.
Launched in 2010, the brand has shown 12 back-to-back Runway collections locally and internationally. The brand has also shown exclusive runway collections at the prestigious Maison Moulin de l’Est in Paris as well as at the Alchemy Fashion Festival in London. The brand has also been nominated twice at the prestigious Lux Style Awards in the Best Lawn and Best Pret categories. Wardha Saleem has proven to be one of the most consistently creative talents in Pakistan’s young fashion industry. The designer who is also the CEO of Fashion Pakistan Council is a textile artist who lives and breathes blending bold colours and inventing dynamic print play. A textile design graduate from the prestigious Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture along-with seven years of teaching and advisory experience, Wardha Saleem is in sync with her passion to create and experiment. Wardha Saleem’s creations speak volumes of her deep understanding of textile, fashion and sub-continental traditions.
Zaheer Abbas was established in 2010 as a Pakistani design house rooted in simplicity. Zaheer is known for his use of monochrome, something unusual in Pakistan, as well as his craftsmanship. He works with his team of artisans to make each piece by hand in his studio. Zaheer has proven to be one of the country’s top designers with awards like the prestigious Lux Style Awards, Etihad’s Most Inspiring Designer and Geo Films Best Costume Designer Award. Zaheer has recently launched his Printology line, a ready to wear or lawn collection, featuring one of a kind prints created by the studio.
Bringing his statement accessories to Fashion Scout 2016, Felix Bendish celebrates his favorite city – London. With it being a city of individualism and inclusiveness his pieces from the collection ranging from handbags, neck pieces, earrings and belts Bendish ignited humour at the London Fashion Week show. Continue reading
Is your skin a problem? Is stressing, showing on your face as acne, and stressing you out more?
No one understands skin suffering more than Maria Delray, Founder and creator of the brand Jeunvie after being diagnosed with diffuse systemic cutaneous scleroderma. SCS is a severe auto immune disease that causes hardening of the skin, hyper pigmentation and swelling, as well as redness and dry itchy skin. Unable to use counter or prescription products on her skin, Maria decided to take matters into her own hands and reclaim some control of her body. Continue reading
“Painting is poetry that is seen rather than felt,
and poetry is painting that is felt rather than seen.”
― Leonardo da Vinci
For his Autumn/Winter 2016 collection Ashley Isham found inspiration from a contemporary young Russian Artist Igor Skaletsky. Based in Berlin but born in Moscow Igor’s creates thought provoking paintings and textural collages. The way Igor freely manipulated the recognizable images of art history and high culture – Isham was particularly fond and incorporated his works throughout his collection. Continue reading
Winner of Fashion Scout Merit Award 2016, David Ferreira brings bright hues to Freemason’s Hall at London Fashion Week. Bringing 3 motifs of structure, volume and texture in pastel pinks and ripples of raspberries as opposed to black. An upcoming talent to keep your eyes on in the next few years. Here in pictures are the images from the show.