by Aamna Haider Isani
The third and final day of fashion week held the promise of the best shows and the most amazing collections. But it didn’t live up to either of those expectations. Day 3 started on a strong note with Shamaeel and Nomi Ansari but it tumbled downhill from there.
Collection: Absolute Orientalism
Shamaeel has a strong signature and she sticks to it. Rich, grand and very regal ensembles dominated this collection; there was layering as usual and that layering was enhanced by the use of print. Visually it was a delight and reflected the designer’s understanding of her craft. The finale outfit, a red velvet trailing bridal, was nothing short of resplendent.
Label: Nomi Ansari
Colour is what most people restrict Nomi Ansari’s creations to but when I see his ensembles walk out (they do have a life of their own) I see absolute perfection of construction, finish and balance. There is never a stitch out of place, a colour misplaced or an embellishment that has been fixed shoddily. What caught my eye was the row of dewy crystals that moved against the midriff when the models walked. So pretty. If god is in the details then this collection was nothing short of heavenly!
Label: Saira Shakira
Collection: Seeking Paradise
Still young in their path to couture discovery, Saira Shakira were aptly ‘Seeking Paradise’ at fashion week. I’d emphasize on the word ‘seeking’ because they are on the right path and have some interesting ideas when it comes to styles. Lacking in their collection, however, was direction and cohesion.
Label: Asifa and Nabeel
Collection: Venetian Dreams
Asifa and Nabeel are nice people. But they aren’t exactly fashion week material. Why? Simply because they have nothing new to offer; their vision is commercial and not fashion forward. They have never offered, let alone set, a trend. That said their fashion week collections are usually visually balanced even if unexciting. They failed to offer even that in this edition. At the risk of sounding unforgiving, this was one of the worst Asifa Nabeel collections I have seen in the last five years and it was not pleasant to sit through.
Label: Ammara Khan
Collection: Memoirs from a Moonlit Garden
I wouldn’t use the word ‘unimpressive’ for Ammara Khan’s collection because she is only two years old at fashion week and that would be too harsh. But for someone who has been catering to a niche clientele for years, her fashion week collection was reasonably disappointing. Ammara’s choice of colours, to begin with, was lackluster. Her styles may have been intriguing had the ensembles not been awash with crystals. The finale outfit was the saving grace of the collection but it’s debatable whether it was the outfit or Fauzia’s enviable waistline that left the lasting impression. I have seen Ammara’s actual bridals up close, she designed outstanding wedding wear for two of my nieces; they were two of the best bridal outfits that I’ve ever seen. But the designer is obviously having trouble bringing her talent to the runway.
Collection: Fall/Winter Bridal Couture Collection 2015
There are no ways of saying it: this was not HSY’s best. In fact, in retrospect to the last two years, this collection was a let down. The opening sequence, Cybil enacting a bird caught in a thunderstorm (suggested by the music), unfortunately just proved that this collection would not fly. And sure enough – whether it was the murky palette or the mediocre styles – it didn’t. This flightless collection was not how one expected an HSY grand finale to conclude fashion week.
Photography by Faisal Farooqui