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Posts Tagged: "Rami Al Ali"

Fashion Unites Against Terrorism

A woman lights candles in honor of victims of the Hamas attacks during a vigil. The sign reads Out of Words. (Photo Credit: AP)

October 7th was a grim reminder for those of us who witnessed the terror and horror of 9/11 first hand and its impact, not only on New York City’s fashion industry, but the world at large. The recent attack on Israeli civilians by Hamas that involved rockets, drones, ground infiltrations and the taking of hostages, was an act of pure evil. Retaliation was swift and continues to result in pain and sorrow for both Israelis and Palestinians.

Depending on a country’s political interests, historical ties and moral values, they have responded to Hamas’ October attack on Israel – and Israel’s response –  in different ways. Some countries stand with Israel, some stand with Palestine, while some try to mediate or remain neutral. Most though are in agreement that a release of the hostages, a ceasefire and humanitarian aid to Gaza are critical. As we process the complexity of the situation with empathy, we are reminded how fashion, as a form of self-expression, has always tried to unite. Past runway shows are evidence of this and the perfect vehicle to support or condemn social issues, whether it be animal rights, gay rights, women’s rights, size inclusivity, political oppression or other causes. So, you can be sure that the upcoming Fall 2025 shows will feature a combination of condemnation and/or support for one side or the other, but most probably there will be a rallying cry for “give peace a chance”. Let’s all hope it works. We want to see a just and lasting agreement between Israelis and Palestinians that will bring an end to the occupation, and peace, security and prosperity for Israelis and Palestinians alike.

The Global Fashion Industry Takes a Stand Against Terrorism

The fashion industry is a global enterprise and therefore a majority of fashion houses, rather than take sides, have taken a stand by denouncing terrorism and calling for an end to violence and hatred. Brands have expressed solidarity and support for the victims of the conflict, on both sides. For example, Stella McCartney posted a message on her Instagram saying: “My heart breaks for the people and families who are being senselessly killed and brutalised right now. This is terrorism. You do not need to be Israeli or Palestinian to see that this is wrong. I stand with those around the world who seek peace and justice for all.” She also shared a link to a petition by Avaaz, a global civic movement, that urges world leaders to intervene and stop the bloodshed.

British fashion designer Victoria Beckham also took to social media to share her thoughts on the situation at hand. Her statement read: “In this time of crisis, my thoughts are with the innocent victims of the recent unjust and barbaric attacks. These acts of brutal terrorism have left both Israeli and Palestinian civilians suffering. As human beings, we can’t help but be deeply affected by these harrowing acts. As a mother and as a woman, seeing the pain, suffering and loss of life on both sides is truly horrific. I stand with those around the world who seek an end to the violence and hatred. I stand for peace.”

The Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) issued its own statement, noting that it “stands with those determined to fight terrorism”. The organization added: “We mourn the loss of life and pray for the cycle of violence to end for a lasting peace.”

Zara store in Jerusalem. (Photo Credit: AFP)

One of the most immediate actions taken by some global fashion and beauty brands was to close their stores in Israel temporarily, to protect their employees and customers. For instance, Inditex, the owner of Zara, announced the closing of its 84 stores in Israel until further notice. Other brands that followed suit included H&M, Mango, Sephora, and L’Oréal. These brands have also expressed their hope for a swift end to the conflict and a return to normalcy.

American Eagle’s billboard in Times Square supporting Israel. (Photo Credit: American Eagle)

Other brands decided to take a stand with Israel. American Eagle made a bold statement of its own, replacing its flagship billboard in New York City’s Times Square with an image of the Israeli flag. A picture of the billboard was shared by the company’s chief marketing officer Craig Brommers in a post on LinkedIn.

One of many posts from Shoshanna Gruss. (Photo Credit: @Shoshanna via Instagram)

Shoshanna Gruss, the designer behind her contemporary namesake label Shoshanna, posted her support to Israel and condemned the brutal attacks. On October 12th, Shoshanna donated 100% of her online sales to Magen David Adom, Israel’s national medical emergency, disaster, ambulance and blood service. The designer also posted, “The silence from the fashion industry is deafening, We stand with Israel now & forever”.

Tory Burch, the executive chairman and chief creative officer of the eponymous brand, and Pierre-Yves Roussel, the brand’s CEO, addressed employees in an internal letter last week. “We condemn terrorism and hatred in all their forms. The heart-wrenching reports and brutal images of the terrorist attack in Israel last weekend have deeply affected us,” they wrote. The Tory Buch brand will support those affected through two organizations: the International Committee of the Red Cross, dedicated to humanitarian aid, and the Alliance for Middle East Peace (ALLMEP), an organization focused on promoting peace in the region. “We will make a personal donation of $100,000 and a $150,000 donation on behalf of the company. Additionally, Tory Burch LLC will match any employee donations to ALLMEP.”

Chanel’s executive chairman, Alain Wertheimer, and CEO Leena Nair shared an internal note that was circulated on social media last week. “We have all been horrified and deeply saddened by the terrorist attacks against Israeli citizens. The war and resulting humanitarian crisis are a tragedy.” The internal note also stated that Chanel was donating $4 million to organizations engaged in providing humanitarian assistance.

A spokesperson for Capri Holdings Ltd., the parent company of Michael Kors, Jimmy Choo, and Versace, said, “We are deeply saddened by the recent attacks in Israel. Capri Holdings is currently exploring various organizations to which we can contribute to provide humanitarian assistance to those affected.”

Hearst, the parent company of Harper’s Bazaar, pledged $300,000 to various organizations, including UNICEF, Save the Children, and Doctors Without Borders. These organizations are working on the ground to deliver essential supplies and services, such as food, water, medicine, shelter, and education, to the people in need.

Other fashion companies that have made donations include PVH Corp., the owner of Calvin Klein and Tommy Hilfiger; Tapestry Inc., the owner of Coach and Kate Spade; Ralph Lauren Corp.; Levi Strauss & Co.; Gap Inc.; and VF Corp., the owner of Vans and The North Face. These companies have also encouraged their employees and customers to join them in supporting these causes.

(Left to Right) Galia Lahav and Pnina Tornai both announced they are not showing their collections amid the harrowing attacks in Israel. (Photo Credits: Getty Images)

Some Israeli designers have been active in raising awareness and funds for their country. For example, Galia Lahav, a bridal and eveningwear designer, launched a campaign called #StandWithIsrael, and donated 10 percent of her online sales to Magen David Adom. Pnina Tornai, another bridal designer, also donated 10 percent of her sales to Magen David Adom, and posted a video on Instagram urging her followers to do the same. Both designers canceled their Bridal Fashion Week Runway Shows in New York as a sign of solidarity with their country. “Our hearts are heavy, and our thoughts are with all those affected by this devastating conflict,” said Lahav. “We hope for a future where we can come together to celebrate the beauty and creativity that define our brand.”

Other Israeli designers who have also shown their support include Alon Livne, Nili Lotan, Ronen Chen, Dorit Bar Or, Maya Reik, Shani Zimmerman, Yael Sonia, Kobi Halperin, Nili Ben Simon, Shai Shalom, Maya Bash, Yael Cohen Arissohn. Some of them have shared their personal stories and experiences of living under rocket fire and sirens.

Her Excellency Sheikha Al Mayassa Bint Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, chairperson of Qatar Museums, speaks at the Fashion Trust Arabia Prize Gala in 2021. (Photo Credit: WWD)

A number of fashion-related events have been canceled or postponed throughout the Middle East. Vogue Arabia, Chopard, and Italian jeweler Pomellato have canceled upcoming events in the Middle East. We Design Beirut, a four-day design festival scheduled for late October in Lebanon, has been postponed for the safety of all participants.

The Fashion Trust of Arabia Awards 2023, which was originally planned for October 25 in Dubai, has also been postponed. “At FTA, our goal has always been to support the talents of designers in the MENA region,” the organization stated in a release. “However, given the current situation in the region, it would be ill-considered to continue with our event.”

designer Nirmeen Hourani

Nirmeen Hourani – the first female owner of a fashion house in Gaza (Photo credit: middleeasteye.com)

Lebanese designers Elie Saab, Tony Ward, Georges Hobeika, Zuhair Murad, Emirati-Palestinian designer Reema Al Banna, as well as Syrian couturier Rami Al Ali and French-Moroccan designer Charaf Tajer, all Arab designers who show their collections during Paris Fashion Week, are all highly regarded on the world stage. Instagram has been the vehicle for designers to show their support, solidarity or opposition to the Israel/Hamas conflict. Sadly, with the exception of @Reema Al Banna, none of these designers have taken a stand publicly against the atrocities of this war.

For Gazan designers, it has been much harder to make it onto the global fashion stage due to geo-political circumstances that began in 2006 with the terrorist group Hamas winning the parliamentary election and then the subsequent blockade of the Gaza Strip in 2007.

Nirmeen Hourani, the first female owner of a fashion house in Gaza, has had to overcome many challenges to make her dreams come true. According to MiddleEastEye.com, “her journey in fashion has not always been straightforward, mainly due to the 15-year-old Israeli blockade on Gaza and the fact that there are no fashion schools to attend.” 

 

This shirt / jacket / dress plays on the dishdasheh silhouette worn traditionally by men in the Middle East.

A shirt by Taita Leila based on the dishdasheh silhouette worn traditionally by men in the Middle East. (Photo credit: Taita Leila)

Taita Leila, a Palestinian brand inspired by the tradition of Palestinian embroidery, or tatreez, reinterprets the techniques “in a way that would make your grandmother proud”. According to their website: “Since last year’s uprising [2022], we have been having difficulty in reaching our audience via social media, and especially Instagram. We are tired of being shadowbanned simply because we’re Palestinian. What’s it like being shadowbanned?  Your exposure on a given social media platform is restricted and your direct followers infrequently see your posts. Even supermodel Bella Hadid has called out the platform for silencing her whenever she posts anything about Palestine, her stories drop by over 1 MILLION views! ”  Recently however, in response to the Israel/Hamas War, Taita Leila has raised over $1.8 million on Instagram to help ensure that hospitals and emergency responders have the supplies they need in Gaza.

Nol Collective works with family owned businesses, artisan workshops, and women’s cooperatives from villages in the hills of Jerusalam to Gaza, Ramallah, and Bethlehem, producing traditional Palestinian crafts such as tatreez (hand embroidery) and weaving touched by a history of political struggle and resistance. They too have been raising funds on their Instagram channel to help the innocent victims of the war.

Nol Collective (Photo credit: NolCollective.com)

Other Palestinian brands and determined to keep fashion alive as a form of cultural pride, self expression and resistance to oppression. Neel (which means generation in Arabic), is another multidisciplinary design house that specializes in old Palestinian embroidery with a 1970s aesthetic. “We preserve and repurpose so Palestine is never forgotten and passed on to generations that follow,” reads its bio on Instagram.

WISHING FOR PEACE

John Lennon's Give Peace a Chance poster

John Lennon’s Give Peace a Chance

The fashion industry must continue to do its part to help the victims of this war. Whether it is by closing stores for safety, speaking out for peace, taking the time to understand the complexities of this conflict or by donating to charities, we must all work toward seeking a just and lasting agreement between Israelis and Palestinians. John Lennon said it best in 1969, “Give Peace a Chance”.

WEDDING BELLS ARE RINGING: SPRING 2023 BRIDAL TRENDS

- - Fashion Shows

A look from Elie Saab’s Bridal Spring 2023 Collection. (Photo Credit; Elie Saab)

After 2 years of postponed weddings, thanks to Covid, here come the brides! An estimated 2.5 million weddings—the most since 1984—are expected to take place in the U.S. in 2022, according to market-research firm, The Wedding Report. The wedding boom follows a record number of cancellations, postponements, elopements–and lots of Zoom nuptials (yes, it’s true) during the past two years.

“Weddings are, without a doubt, back to pre-pandemic levels,” says Hannah Nowack, Real Weddings editor at The Knot, in an interview with Forbes.

A look from Mira Zwillinger’s Bridal Spring 2023 Collection . (Photo Credit: Mira Zwillinger)

Certainly, some couples will continue to hold intimate micro-weddings, but wedding vendors, venues and planners note a return to traditional ceremonies with larger guest lists. In the second half of 2021, The Knot reported the average guest count to be 110, compared with the pre-pandemic average of 131. And in 2022 the average number of guests is projected to be 129, which is in line with pre-pandemic figures.  “After so many months of planning, and time spent away from loved ones, these couples are eager to reunite and celebrate with a blowout bash,” says Nowack.

Even the White House will host a wedding celebration this year as President Joe Biden’s granddaughter Naomi Biden will marry her longtime love, Peter Neal.

Joe Biden’s Granddaughter Naomi Biden Will Have a White House Wedding Celebration. Here she is with her fiance Peter Neal. (Photo Credit: Yahoo Finance)

“The President and First Lady will host the wedding reception for their granddaughter Naomi Biden and her fiancée Peter Neal at the White House on November 19, 2022,” Elizabeth Alexander, the communications director for Dr. Jill Biden, tells PEOPLE in a statement. “The First Family, the couple, and their parents are still in the planning stages of all of the wedding festivities and look forward to announcing further details in the coming months.” 

Although Naomi Biden’s upcoming wedding may still be in the planning stages, one thing is for sure, she will have plenty of bridal dresses to chose from as New York Luxury Bridal Fashion Week (NYLBFW) just wrapped up its spring 2023 season (debuting from April 6-8, 2022). The show has finally returned to in-person runway shows and market appointments. A good sign.

NYLBFW, an industry event where bridal designers and brands unveil their latest collections, happens twice a year, October and April, and draws retail buyers, press, and of course, future brides to be. Pre-covid, many bridal labels would host theatrical runway shows, presentations, and intimate events, to fashion insiders; but today, thanks to CFDA’s RUNWAY360, everyone has access to the latest bridal spring 2023 collections.

In an interview with WWD,  The Bridal Council’s executive director Michelle Iacovelli stated, “The wonderful thing is over 13 countries will be represented by designers traveling to New York City, the capital of bridal.What’s interesting is that even though collections will be presented digitally, the brands will still be in New York doing market appointments, it’s a real hybrid.” She further explained, “The demand is there from the brides. This year is set to be the biggest number of weddings since 1984.

For all of you brides and bridal designers out there, who are either planning your wedding or interested in bridal’s latest trends, this is for you:

For the fourth season, The Bridal Council is continuing its partnership with Pullquest to feature the 2023 collections on The Bridal Council x Pullquest’s digital showroom platform. The site will display the online presentation schedule and continue to act as a digital marketing tool and sales platform with collection imagery and videos, downloadable press kits and more for six months following Luxury Bridal Fashion Week,” according to WWD.

Established bridal designers like Monique Lhullier, Marchesa, Amsale, and Anne Barge (to name a few) have all presented, alongside smaller and up-and-coming brands, during a jam-packed three-day virtual and in-person affair. During these shows, brides become inspired by the fashion, accessories, and trends before making their wedding dress plans. Although it is important to keep in mind that a bride should chose a look that they feel comfortable, confident, and beautiful in, they should also be looking for a dress that speaks to their personal style.

A look from Anne Barge’s Bridal Spring 2023 Collection. (Photo Credit: Anne Barge)

This season there were plenty of gorgeous gowns to chose from that ran the gamut – from princess and minimalist to frilly and daring.

Here are a few breakout trends for the spring 2023 bridal season.

SINGULAR SENSATION

One shoulder gowns are making a splash this season!  Designers are opting for asymmetrical dresses, offering their brides a modern and fresh twist for their fairy-tale event.

A look from Elie Saab’s Bridal Spring 2023 Collection. (Photo Credit: Elie Saab)

A look from LEGENDS Romona Keveza’s Spring 2023. (Photo Credit: Romona Keveza)

A look from Kim Kassas Couture Bridal Spring 2023 Collection. (Photo Credit: Kim Kassas Couture)

A look from Mira Zwillinger’s Bridal Spring 2023 Collection. (Photo Credit: Mira Zwillinger)

A look from Nadia Manjarrez Studio Bridal’s Spring 2023 Collection. (Photo Credit: Nadia Manjarrez Studio)

A look from Amsale’s Bridal Spring 2023 Collection. (Photo Credit: Amsale)

BARE CONDITIONING

Following in the footsteps of the last ready-to-wear fashion week, the Cut-It-Out trend lives on. Sexy and strategic cut outs have replaced the transparent trend as the new, must have, racy bridal dress of the season.

A look from Costarellos’ Bridal Spring 2023 Collection. (Photo Credit: Costarellos)

A look from Lihi Hod’s Bridal Spring 2023 Collection. (Photo Credit: Lihi Hod)

A look from Sachin & Babi’s Bridal Spring 2023 Collection. (Photo Credit: Sachin & Babi)

A look from Theia’s Spring 2023 Bridal Collection. (Photo Credit: Theia)

TAKE A BOW

Bows are back! From exaggerated oversized bows to demure little ties, these romantic ties are a refreshing take on traditional dresses.

A look from Honor NYC Bridal’s Spring 2023 Collection. (Photo Credit: Honor)

A look from LEGENDS Romona Keveza’s Spring 2023 . (Photo Credit: Romona Keveza)

A look from ALYNE by Rita Vinieris’ Bridal Spring 2023 Collection. (Photo Credit: Rita Vinieris)

A look from Mira Zwillinger’s Bridal Spring 2023 Collection. (Photo Credit: Mira Zwillinger)

A look from Peter Langner’s Bridal Spring 2023 Collection. (Photo Credit: Peter Langer)

A look from Nadia Manjarrez’s Bridal Spring 2023 Collection. (Photo Credit: Nadia Manjarrez)

AND THE BRIDE WORE…..PANTS

Not every bride dreams of wearing a dramatic gown, so for spring 2023 designers are offering plenty of trouser options.

A look from Amsale’s Bridal Spring 2023 Collection. (Photo Credit: Amsale)

A look from Rami Al Ali’s Bridal Spring 2023 Collection. (Photo Credit: Rami Al Ali)

A look from Sachin & Babi’s Bridal Spring 2023 Collection. (Photo Credit: Sachin & Babi)

A look from Costarellos’ Bridal Spring 2023 Collection. (Photo Credit: Costarellos)

THE RETURN OF THE MINI

The mini was one of the biggest runway trends this season and the bridal market has jumped on the bandwagon. They offer plenty of mini-dress bridal numbers that are sweet and sassy.

A look from Elie Saab’s Bridal Spring 2023 Collection. (Photo Credit: Elie Saab)

A look from Rami Al Ali’s Bridal Spring 2023 Collection. (Photo Credit: Rami Al Ali)

A look from Peter Langner’s Bridal Spring 2023 Collection. (Photo Credit: Peter Langer)

A look from Odylyne The Ceremony Bridal Spring 2023 Collection. (Photo Credit: Odylyne)

A look from Honor NYC Bridal’s Spring 2023 Collection. (Photo Credit: Honor)

CORSET IT IS

The corset trend is stronger than ever as bridal designers offer some of the most romantic lingerie-inspired bodices for spring.

A look from Dana Harel’s Bridal Spring 2023 Collection. (Photo Credit: Dana Harel)

A look from Theia’s Spring 2023 Bridal Collection. (Photo Credit: Theia)

A look from RIVINI by Rita Vinieris’ Bridal Spring 2023 Collection . (Photo Credit: Rita Vinieris)

A look from Lihi Hod’s Bridal Spring 2023 Collection. (Photo Credit: Lihi Hod)

A look from Romona Keveza’s Bridal Collection Spring 2023. (Photo Credit: Romona Keveza)

SO TELL US, WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE BRIDAL TREND?