With so many fashion weeks taking place in Karachi, Lahore and Islamabad these days, it almost seems as if there are more fashion weeks than there are designers. As a result, quantity is triumphing over quality.
This was the case with Lahore’s PFDC Sunsilk Fashion Week at the Expo Centre, which offered only a few memorable collections. The evening ended with a trends show in which all the designers collaborated together on a collection. Toni & Guy’s turbans made from braided hair, Ali Xeeshan and Fahad Hussayn’s extravagant headgear and Muse’s sequined rosette jumpsuit were the highlights of the trends show.
Actor-cum-host Juggan Kazim opened Nickie Nina’s military-inspired collection which included embellished blazers, dresses and accessories. Although one would have expected a very rugged feel from their ‘Royal Military’ line, the sister duo was able to add a feminine touch to their outfits. While some of the embellished blazers did not complement the look, it was refreshing to see the fashion house come out with a cohesive collection. What really stood apart were the accessories like the medals, badges and the usage of the crescent and star symbol.
New York-based designer Azeeza Desai Khan is still a newbie to the Pakistani fashion industry. Her ‘Inheritance’ collection at PFDC was a tribute to her Indian and Afghani roots. Although the quality of embellishments was top-notch, the collection required structure and better quality fabric. Also, western dresses worn over net lehengas did not qualify as an amalgamation between East and West. However, with more seasoning and structure, the designer has the potential to make some spectacular collections in the future.
Karachi-based designer, Tazeen Hasan’s ‘Evocative’ line was probably one of the most disappointing collections of the evening. With florals, frills, sequins and beading on chiffons, Hasan’s overly embellished outfits with lace and cotton rosettes was a wee bit garish. Even though the sequined drain pipe pants were reminiscent of the Studio 54 era, pairing the pants with pistachio green kameezes with huge white rosettes was overkill.
Muse has a signature style that can be identified a mile away. Shirts, dresses and jumpsuits were embellished with embroidered zebras, birds and other safari-esque motifs. Sticking to his design philosophy, the designer has once again laid great emphasis on sequins.
After Hasan, Mohsin Ali’s Baran-i-Ishq collection took the cake for being one of the biggest misfits of the evening. The lack of design, colour choice and cut seemed as if Ali wasn’t taking PFDC seriously. Most of the designs were ordinary chiffon shirts and angarkha-styled kameezes that had a lot of chata patti work.
Elan’s ‘Flights of Fantasy’ collection was a breath of fresh air. Known for her work with lace and net, Khadija Shah went for floral patterns on quintessentially oriental cuts. Although flamenco-styled pants and embellished blazers took over the runway, Shah remained true to her love for colour blocking.
Correction: An earlier version of this article incorrectly read “Every season, the choice of embellishment changes from gota and crystal to zari. Now the designer has shifted focus to sequins.” It has now been changed to “Sticking to his design philosophy, the designer has once again laid great emphasis on sequins.”
Published in The Express Tribune, April 16th, 2012.