The Good, the Bad, the Banal
Expectations were high when the spotlights lit up the unusual rectangular Showcase ramp. After all, two of the moving forces behind Fashion Pakistan’s groundbreaking fashion week were Rizwan Beyg and Ayesha Tammy Haq. And the same formidable duo were organising Showcase. This time Rizwan teamed up with Sky Productions and Hello! magazine and brought Tammy on board to do what she does best – organise and trouble shoot!
Though Showcase was a platform for young designers, models, et al and not a regular fashion week, Rizwan pulled in some of fashion’s big names too – local and international.
The ramp was a first. Rectangular, with central seating and a row of lamp-shaded chandeliers. Quite stunning and a testimony to Rizwan’s creative innovation.
Sartorially speaking, the high points on Day I were Sania Maskatiya’s elegant digitally printed cruise collection, the youthful exuberance of Warda Lawn and Irfan Ali’s bright, vibrant Punjabi mela with a twist. Nida Azwer showed her signature bridal wear, which included a couple of striking beautifully embroidered saris.
The iconic Rizwanullah rocked the ramp on Day 2 with his ‘Fashion Meets Art collection.’ Zainab Sajid’s creative Pakistan Collection was particularly poignant as Day 2 also saw Karachi in flames. ‘Rung Ja’ from Bareeze hit the ramp with a burst of wild colour, India’s Nakulsen showed a collection of stunning saris, while studio FH from Sri Lanka showed perfectly tailoured menswear. It was fun, fun, fun all the way with Fnk Asia’s riotously happy ‘Hello Sunshine’ collection.
Day 3 belonged to Bangladesh’s Bibi Russell. Her traditional ethical collection based on the Bengali gamcha or towel, with the models dancing on the ramp, was one of Showcase’s high points. Kiran Aman made a design statement with her gold-dipped oak-wood shavings fashioned into dramatic jewellery. Wardha Saleem’s collection was intricately constructed and like the sparrow it was dedicated to, moved like a bird in flight.
The closing day opened with Faiza Samee’s tribute to the world of yesteryear’s courtesans. And the collection was vintage Faiza: exquisite embroidery and detailing in colour palettes that only Faiza can create. Spain’s Agatha Ruiz de la Prada’s fluorescent neon colours, combined with perfect cuts, was the stuff that international catwalk collections are made of. Feeha Jamshed’s tribute to her sister was poignant, but signature Jamshed: sleek, svelte and understated. Amir Adnan reinforced the fact that he is the sherwani maestro. His collection of immaculately tailored and styled sherwanis was faultless as it was creative. Honey Waqar’s intricate gota work went down well, while Sanya and Seveen Muneer’s ramp debut of elegant party wear was subtle, low-key and very wearable.
Day 4 also saw the launching of ‘Ethical Fashion,’ the first holistic ethical fashion platform in the world which will showcase, develop and promote designers that practise and protect traditional crafts.
At the end of the day, the bottom line of any show is the talent on the ramp and juxtaposing the good, the bad and the totally forgettable doesn’t make any sense – any which way you look at it. No show should promote mediocrity. Excellence in design should be just that – whether it’s a young designer or an established design house. And till the bar is raised and entrants are edited, our ramps will never really rock, no matter how professional and slick the show is. Many of the designers on Showcase’s brilliant ramp didn’t deserve to be there; some just made it, while a few truly showed excellence in design.
That ratio just has to change.
Click on any photo to begin slideshow
Creative Director: Rizwan Beyg
Media and PR: Tehmina Khaled @ Take II
Hair and Make-up: Depilex and Sajid
Model Coordination: Munaf Mansoor
This article was originally published in the April 2012 issue of Newsline under the headline “The Good, the Bad, the Banal.”
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