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12 Aug

Iftar at Nomi’s: where the African Grey was louder than any of us!

A gentle evening breeze kept the outdoors cool, a squawking parrot made sure he was heard above the social chatter and Nomi's dress code - white - ensured a sense of serenity was maintained through-out the iftar that he hosted today. Shamaeel, who hosted an iftar for council members last week and Nomi, who put together the most eclectic of people for his. Iraj in a sufi-mode, Shamaeel doing the desi-girl and Fareshteh wearing black in a white theme GT. After hours: Tapu, Nubain, Saqib and Frieha lounging after that lavish feast! Fauzia, risking a plate of pakoras and Nadia, avoiding food at all costs to lose the...
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24 Apr

Ensemble One beats The PFDC Boulevard and FP Lounge to Dolmen Mall

Five fashion weeks led to the opening of Ensemble One at Dolmen Mall today and I must say, it was a phenomenal success. Stocking fashion under Rs 10,000 is a revolutionary idea for Pakistan (where the average designer label begins at 15,000) and credit goes to Zeba Husain, Shehrnaz and Shezray for bringing it together. Here's what the evening looked like...
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10 Apr

Fashion Pakistan Week S/S 2012: Day 3

[youtube=] You know the feeling of excited desperation you get when you’re reading a great book or watching a super film and you never want it to end. Well I got that feeling at FPW yesterday. The day was so amazing that I didn’t want to let go of it, despite exhaustion kicking in like never before. But what a day! What a line-up, even from the unexpected new stars of fashion! Meera strikes a pose for Nomi Ansari Meera has never looked this good before and Nomi Ansari injected a shot of adrenalin to a day that was already very high on good fashion! Mehreen Syed poses in Shamaeel spring/summer 2012 Shamaeel's floral collection was gentle...
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26 Mar

Fashion Hunger Games begin: may the odds be in your favour!

There's something Maheen Khan said when I met her two weeks ago: "I love fashion weeks because that's a time when we designers stop thinking about sales and start thinking about concept. It channels us towards creativity." When we were one: Rizwan Beyg will be kick starting his own SHOWCASE (today), which will undoubtedly be well planned and impressive given his obsession with perfectionism whereas Maheen Khan will be reviving Fashion Pakistan Week next week. As they say in The Hunger Games: May the odds be forever in your favour! Maheen will be showing her classic Maheen line as well as her high street label Gulabo at Fashion Pakistan Week 3 (FPW3), one of the many fashion weeks/showcases...
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16 Feb

Nomi Ansari’s all for bridals

Nomi Ansari is unapologetic about his love for bridals and his focus is what makes him so good. I've seen Nomi Ansari rise from the time when he had a little, colourful studio on the mezzanine floor of an unimpressive building in one of the lanes of 26th street. Now he has an impressive space near Teen Talwar, one that boasts hundreds of samples of his vibrant shaadi-wear. Each and every outfit is separated by a plastic laminate (to avoid embellishment snagging the fabric) and each outfit is coded and marked with a visual card. These cards often get stolen, says the man who faces the threat of being one of the most plagiarized designers in Pakistan....
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20 Jan

Retail isn’t always therapeutic!

(Published in Instep Today on January 14, 2012) Nurjehan Bilgrami's Koel within the Fashion Pakistan Lounge A purple towel lay sprawled outside the front door of PFDC’s newly opened Boulevard on Lahore’s Main Boulevard Avenue, at Mall One to be exact. The purple towel served the vital purpose of a doormat. To be fair, it had been drizzling that day (Friday, January 6 to be exact) and the towel made sure wet shoes didn’t step into the swanky new store. At least it was a fashionable shade of purple, not candy pink or God forbid muddy mustard. Other than that wet towel, the PFDC Boulevard’s facade looked very grand. If charged with spying on boutiques in my free time,...
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14 Dec

Oops, they did it again!

Nomi Ansari with his good friend, model Tooba Siddiqui Nomi Ansari has pulled out of showing at the upcoming PFDC L'Oreal Paris Bridal Week. Before you indulge in the inevitable and start taking sides on whose fault it is, I have one thing to say: Don't shoot the messenger, please. From what I have understood, Nomi Ansari was given a confirmation to open the fourth and final day of fashion week, December 21st to be exact. This confirmation was made right in the beginning of event planning, after which he agreed and started preparing for the show. Due to family weddings and personal commitments, he says the 21st was the only day he could show, which is precisely...
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12 Dec

Building bridges with bridal couture

Shamaeel and Nomi Ansari showcase their Fall 2011 collections to celebrate UAE’s 40th Independence Day Anniversary in Karachi Nadia Hussain models a Nomi Ansari bridal (Published on Sunday, December 11 2011) On the surface, a celebration for UAE’s 40th Independence Day anniversary in Karachi appeared to be nothing more than a diplomatic exercise and it primarily was just that. Celebrated over a gala evening of songs by Strings and dances by regional troupes along with some very high-end fashion by Shamaeel and Nomi Ansari, the evening served as an effective measure to strengthen the relationship between both countries. Representation from the UAE came with Rabia Z, the Emirati designer who showcased her Spring/Summer 2012 Mukhawara Collection. Fashion held the evening...
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22 Nov

My thoughts on IFAP

IFAP CEO Mehreen Syed with most of the visiting faculty I wasn't in Lahore for the launch of IFAP but that doesn't mean I don't have an opinion about Pakistan's first Fashion Academy. Of course I do. I've visited the website and do feel that the CEO Mehreen Syed and Head of Faculty Shahzad Raza have made a fair attempt at professionalism, though starting their launch two hours late (according to my journo-colleagues) does not go down well with the required discipline of an academic institution. However, I do think that portraitures made on the website are a bit exaggerated. Mehreen Syed is a good model but calling herself Pakistan's "undisputed supermodel" is pushing it a bit too...
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6 Sep

Copycat, copycat where have you been?

While felines are fashion’s favourite mascotts, copycats are spoilers the industry could happily do without! Louboutan versus YSL: painting the town red with these passionate red souls. One brilliant designer – and there are only a few on that mantel in Pakistan - will create a pattern that has the potential to stir up a nationwide trend. Consider the multi-panel ankle length shirt re-introduced by Sana Safinaz two years ago as an example. Within months, most designers in Pakistan had reinterpreted the paneled shirt in their own collections. High street brands then created inexpensive versions of the high-end design. Many fashionistas in Pakistan tweeted that this Valentino gown seemed inspired by Sana Safinaz. Go figure!  Soon...
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