LAHORE: The second day of PFDC Pakistan L’Oreal Paris Bridal Week (PLBW) witnessed designers showcasing new concepts, new cuts and new inspirations. While creativity, glamour and unusual designs are a common phenomenon on the fashion runways, this one was no different. But, we appreciated how most design houses focused on wearability. The evening commenced with grouped shows, followed by a solo show by Nida Azwer and a finale grouped show featuring Misha Lakhani, Zainab Salman, Hamza Bokhari, Farah & Fatima and Kamiar Rokni.
Here’s what went down at the fashion extravaganza.
Designer: Nida Azwer
Collection: The Rani Bagh
Known for reviving age-old techniques while crafting ensembles, Nida stayed true to her love for animals. She finely entwined her signature style with doses of delicate, floral embroidery to create a dreamy Mughal collection. The designer also brought mirror and cutwork to life in the form of gota on rich fabrics such as tissue and net. And, it all looked oh-so-regal.
One thing that stood out in the collection was the display of heavily embellished, oversized shawls with noteworthy animal motifs, enhanced with delicate hand embroidery. The menswear line consisted of 10 statement pieces with embroidered waistcoats and bright-coloured sherwanis.
Designer: Misha Lakhani
Misha Lakhani’s collection celebrated the bohemian nomad in a mix of Persian and Central Asian textiles with hand-woven fabrics steeped in old-world charm. The assortment of clothing was based entirely in luxurious fabrics and cuts, adorned in a range of feminine silhouettes. It mainly entailed solid colours enhanced with shimmering gold gota work.
The runway opened to noticeable pre-draped dupattas, voluminous crushed ghagras and timeless angarkhas featuring bold borders. Profoundly embroidered flared maxi dresses were a sight for sore eyes. The jewellery collaboration with Aliel comprised distinct pieces that could be deconstructed to create multiple looks.
Designer: Zainab Salman
Presenting her debut collection, Zainab Salman fused traditional wear with couture. The designer took a sharp turn from overly modern formal wear to a traditional bridal collection inspired by unconditional love, with the palette and work encompassing the passion that comes with it. A lot of attention was paid to finessing the collection with the likes of customised tassels on cholis, lehengas and dupattas.
We loved how Zainab revived the tissue fabric by contrasting it with floral prints and stuck to traditional aesthetics while experimenting with modern silhouettes. The sari, worn by model Sabeeka Imam, was our favourite from the collection. Actor Iqra Aziz, who was one of the celebrity showstoppers, was garbed in a voluminous golden-hued lehenga paired with an opulently embellished, hand embroidered gown. She walked the ramp with musician Ali Noor.
Designer: The House of Kamiar Rokni
Celebrating the power of femininity and the beauty of adornment, Kamiar’s collection had a mix of painstaking traditional couture, intricate embroidery and tailored bohemian formals. It comprised heirloom pieces including ornamented ganga jamuni lehengas – a legacy that is passed on from one generation to the next.
Overall, the collection was a cocktail spread which saw structured Victorian sleeves and sleek vibrant borders with a colour palette that moved from the daintiness of lilac to the intensity of blood red. The most distinctive feature of this showcase was the fact that it was extremely wearable. Kamiar was able to shine light on the elaborate needlework without overwhelming the entire look; allowing the customer to have the pleasure of wearing couture as formals.
Designer: Jeem by Hamza Bokhari
Staying true to his roots, Hamza explored the crafts and grandeur of southern Pakistan. Exhibiting the unification of opulence and minimalism, his offerings entailed sparkling floral designs and animal motifs in jewel-toned, ultra-feminine silhouettes. Although we laud the designer’s endeavour to curate a vintage collection with a modern twist, it was the cuts and intricate hand embroidery that were a sure-fire stand-out.
Designer: Farah & Fatima
The designer duo created a collection with the essence of traditionalism by bringing modern asymmetrical formals to customary long shirts, containing zardozi, tilla and resham work. The brand’s strongest point was their exquisite craftsmanship and colour contrasts within the embellishments and fabrics. Overall, they presented multiple bridal wear options for this season.
Lajwanti, Rici Melion, FAS and Ahmad Bilal also showcased their collections. However, we felt they all could have opted for more updated silhouettes and aesthetic diversity on the runway, rather than using design techniques which have already been done and dusted. We also sensed that their ‘traditional’ wedding collections slowly diverted towards more westernised silhouettes, creating chaos; especially Lajwanti. Their collections seemed lost somewhere between modern and traditional wear.
Rici Melion, on the other hand, brought interesting menswear to the ramp with affluent embroideries and variations in sherwanis.
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