Instep Today

PSFW Day Two: Designers put Pakistani fashion on the map

Instep Today
By Aamna Haider Isani
Mon, 04, 19

The House of Kamiar Rokni, Chapter 2 and Sana Safinaz give Pakistan’s craft aninternational spin while Saira Shakira takes luxury on an equally global trip. Bring in the spectacular Rising Talent and this is the way forward…

It was a fantastic day at the PFDC Sunsilk Fashion Week. Perhaps consciously keeping TEXPO – the TDAP affiliation – and focus on fashion as a value added export in mind, designers also moved beyond the bridal realm and concentrated on presenting collections that would have a global appeal. Two words that worked its wonders: textile and craft.

Chapter 2

Collection: Threads of Time

It was delightful to see Khaadi’s passion project, Chapter 2, make a debut at the PFDC Sunsilk Fashion Week Friday evening. The day opened with a panoramic blend of colours of the horizon, woven into Pakistan’s strongest export: fabric, in this case handloom. There was perfect balance in this masterpiece collection, right from the palette, the fashion forward silhouettes that could be adapted to any region in the world, and the accessories that incorporated jewellery and shoes made the collection cohesively perfect.

Sana Safinaz

Collection: Boheme Luxe

An extension of what Sana Safinaz showed at the Fashion Pakistan Week last month, Boheme Luxe was, once again, projected as fashion forward and ready to wear wedding wear. But it wasn’t necessarily just that. This was avant garde formal wear, created with elements one would find on treasure hunts in Afghanistan and Persia. Colours found in hand woven rugs, over sized pearls, tassels and layers of silk held together by applique and motifs of a vintage civilization…it pushed the envelope.

Aquafina Rising Talent

Collections: Nuqta by Hafsa Mahmood, Escape by Mahnur Azam and Recursion by Zeeshan Mohyuddin

In what appeared as three directional collections inspired by the shape of water, the three rising stars – Hafsa, Mahnur and Zeeshan – put out very impressive capsules. The strongest, however, would have to be Mahnoor and her fantasy of forgetting by floating on water. The use of plastic juxtaposed with fabric was innovative and very appropriate for the day and age we live in, that is one that balances between the real and superficial.

Saira Shakira

Collection: The Secret Garden

This had to be strongest Saira Shakira collection of recent times as it revived the duo’s strength – western luxury pret – and put the necessity of wedding wear on the back burner. Picking up on a classic favourite – stripes and spots – Saira Shakira took the prints and embellished them with motifs from a secret garden. The shapes and styles were spot on – ankle high wide leg pants are such a summer staple – and it made for spring fresh, summer ready fashion. More of this, please.

The House of Kamiar Rokni

Collection: Neo Folk

To have Kamiar Rokni back on the runway is always a pleasure, more so when it’s for pret rather than his recent wedding wear outings (though they are just as delightful, one must confess). Neo-Folk, his return to pret a porter, was Kami’s pitch to the world via craft that deliberated a united-world vision. Fashion, art and literature have the power to erode geographical boundaries and this collection, in its kaleidoscopic playground, was open for all. Neo-Folk’s leitmotifs – mirror work, block print, surface embellishment and then the styles – were adaptable to the world and could have belonged to the world. One would love to see these in stores; welcome back Kamiar Rokni!

Earlier in the day: Four high street brands – Rici Melion, Sameer Karasu, Zasimo and Hana – presented their collections earlier in the evening and raised the bar for what one has been seeing at early evening shows in the past. Hana was especially delightful with a Lego-inspired collection while Sameer Karasu showed potential in playing with solid colour and shape in his collection. One would love to see these brands take their visions forward and not disappear after fashion week.

– Photography by Faisal Farooqui