The Arab Fashion Council organized history last week by presenting Saudi Arabia’s first ever fashion week in Riyadh presented by Huawei. After major delays from logistical issues and weather conditions, the council still managed to put on an unforgettable show that marked history in the fashion industry.
Showcasing from Tuesday to Saturday, the event took place at the Ritz Carlton, where both local and foreign designers debuted their collections to the female-only audience. Men and cameras were allowed to be present during the reception but only women were allowed to watch history in the making.
European, Saudis and Russian models strutted down the catwalk in elegant gowns and feminine pantsuits, displaying the haute couture talent in Arabia. The show featured designers Tony Ward, Aiisha Ramanda, Maison Alexandrine, and Naja Saade. It was an all-around first timing for many as Rana Yousry also debuted her first collection, “The Black Rose” in the show.
The show consisted of elegant black and red gowns, along with creamy dresses with intricate pearl detailing. Surprisingly, ready-couture weren’t the only highlighted pieces. Saudi Arabia’s very own, Arwa Al Banawi debuted boxy shouldered pantsuits, edgy leather jackets with fringe details and velvet fabrics with satin on classy dresses. Al Banawi also featured sweatshirts and t-shirts with “We Are a Kingdom” splayed over them, stepping away from couture aesthetics. Designers like Roberto Cavalli and Jean Paul Gaultier‘s designs made appearances down the runway, with their long dresses from the fashion house’s latest collection.
Saudi designer, Mashael Alrajhi, also debuted pants and pencil skirts, displaying the Arab aesthetic on the runway. The event has introduced a fashion platform for local and international designers. Princess Noura Bint Faisal Al Saud wants to bring a fashion school to Saudi Arabia with the hopes of it becoming a “Fashion city.” Princess Noura said,
“fashion is a form of a universal language. It is something that is dynamic and in constant change, but it’s not all about trends and design.”
As the show displayed potential of a new generation and ready-to-wear couture, it is anticipated for it to become a stop for fashionistas and designers during any fashion week.