The finale of Fashion Pakistan Week (FPW) 5 on 10th April outstripped Day 1 on every level; not only did Day 2 have a more promising line-up, with Shamaeel, SanaSafinaz, Deepak Perwani and Sania Maskatiya showing, some of the remaining 11 (yes, there were THAT many) designers’ presentations displayed creativity and finesse.
The prize for the show that bowled us over must be given to Shamaeel. With her collection titled Extra-Orient, Shamaeel transported us into a world of powerful lady shoguns exuding femininity and sex appeal. By using the Japanese shibori effect on chiffon and crepe with some plush velvet and hints of embroidery and sequins, Shamaeel created an enchanting collection comprising long and short tops, loose pants, jumpsuits and floor-skimming dresses. The silhouettes were tapered, but the long, billowing and occasionally slashed sleeves added an element of romance and drama.
Ishtiaq Afzal Khan
The Gul Kari collection featured Iranian and Persian embroideries on solid colors. The motifs were worked on the bottom of wide-legged pants, necklines and fronts, sleeves, pockets and even sleeveless cropped jackets. The collection had a desi feel and played with a colourful palette. It was disappointing that IAK preferred to keep things safe, especially since we have seen Adnan Pardesy at FPW4 play with a similar palette so well.
A crowd scan at any high-society chai party will show you just how popular Sania’s printed silk kurtas are. Playing on this strength, Sania’s Naqash collection at FPW5 was a saga of digital prints on silk and crepe. She retained the signature Sania feel by using rich, contrasting colours together with geometrical prints and stripes. Her shirts were mostly short and loose, with some tucked into high waisted pants.
With unibrows, colorful flowers and love from Mexico and Kharadar, Deepak Perwani made the long wait for the finale worth it with Frida Goes to Kharadar. Adding a desi spin to Frida Kahlo de Rivera’s style, Deepak closed the show with an entertaining display. He played with colorful embroidery, layers of printed silks that had some beautiful designs, cotton dresses and tunics. While it was a visual treat, one must admit that the pleasure is owed more to the styling than to the outfits.
The collection titled Love, Devotion and Separation reflected Rizwan’s personal eccentric style, in that it was dark with hints of theatrics. The designer used an abstract print on ivory cotton to depict bad romance and stitched it into jumpsuits, tunics and dresses, with silhouettes remaining loose and unstructured. Ayyan modeled one such dress with a narrowly cut halter bodice that left little to the imagination owing to an unfortunate wardrobe malfunction.
SanaSafinaz’s resort collection 2013 sums up why we love attending fashion week. Amidst the clean, safe and underwhelming, this is the stuff that boasts beautiful cuts and colors as well as delivers spanking new trends in a cohesive collection. The designer duo’s version of luxurious holiday wear includes neck pieces featuring smooth stones, Swarovski crystals, feathers and dangling dainty chains. With hints of embroidery here and there and impeccable styling, SS 2013 collection added the wow factor to FPW5.
The designer duo’s fusion menswear collection was titled Spectacle Blanc (French for ‘white snow’). While the name of the collection was French, the embroidery was Kashmiri and could be seen on stark white jacket sleeves, front panels and waistcoats.
Kayseria’s lawn, however, moved away from the expected domain of three-piece lawn suits. Neon pinks, yellows and greens in short, structured shirts with some cutwork showed Kayseria’s prints in a less desi version.
This collection tried hard to rock, but instead rolled over and died. Titled Rock & Roll, Ayesha’s collection had everything — teekha yellow and orange chiffons and satins; colorful chattapatti; net tights; gaudy silver buckles and lopsided borders bearing embroidery. With filmy songs like Guria Japani blaring in the background, the entire collected reeked of Lollywood, in the sense that it was going downhill. Apart from the cute sunglasses, the ’60s theme was lost on us.
We had a bad reaction to Hasina’s Chain Reaction collection. Her outfits had hints of denim in black and blue, as well as an overkill of gold chains and embellishments that used international runway trends unsuccessfully. Dresses, embellished jeans, more dresses and nothing new or appealing.
While the leather bag collection was an interesting mix of everyday leather arm candy, Wardha Saleem and Nubain Ali’s styling and clothes are what really did the trick. Wardha designed some beautifully stitched dresses with soft silks in gold, aqua and ivory. Our favorite looks were Rubya Chaudhry’s gold silk shirt with a long chained red bag, and Maha’s pristine aqua dress with a matching tote.
“Is it a bird, is it a plane — no, it’s Gul Ahmed’s lawn collection!” posted one Twitter user as the show opened. The textile house brought more lawn to the runway, but broke away from the predictable three-piece suit and dappled with volumes and volumes of the fabric. Models swirled around on the ramp in larger-than-life bird-like ensembles in attractive prints and embroidery.
The collection titled Elise was the designer’s take on fun summer outfits for men and women. The ladies wore capes and coats in chiffon and crepe silk, with panels of lace to break away from the monotony. The color palette ranged from mauve and green to orange.
Hajra Hayat’s collection for the runway had some pieces that would have been en vogue at shaadis in 2000 and never. She tried hard to re-define fashion, and ended up producing an assortment of kurtas, dresses and jumpsuits. The color palette was all over the place, leaving our palates unsatiated thanks to the shoddy work.
The menswear collection titled Sands of Times displayed sherwanis with a mystic appeal. Nauman used off white cotton and linen with polyester and woolen thread work. We loved the turbans and gher wali shalwars!
Photo Credits – FAISAL FAROOQUI AT DRAGONFLY