Naomi Campbell & Victoria Beckham Shine A Spotlight On Fashion Trust Arabia
The London fashion crowd decamped to Doha this week. Naomi Campbell, Victoria Beckham and Jourdan Dunn attended the Fashion Trust Arabia Awards, and packed a generous dose of glamorous red-carpet wear that paid homage to a region known for its evening creations.
Campbell wore a ruffled yellow Valentino spring/summer 2019 couture gown from the same moving showin which she modelled the “Chocolat Dahlia” showstopper. It was business for Beckham, in contrast, as she opted for classic black tailoring with a touch of frivolity brought by a blouse with a flouncy neckline.
Fashion Trust Arabia is a non-profit organisation which supports designers in the Middle East and North Africa. It’s the only initiative of its kind operating in the Arab world and under the patronage of Sheikha Moza bint Nasser. The emerging talent scouted by FTA presented their collections to a panel of industry leaders, including Beckham, Dame Natalie Massenet and Pierpaolo Piccioli, who were looking for originality as well as a sense of commerciality.
“They have a somewhat romantic approach when designing their collections. The Middle East has always been famous for producing champion eveningwear designers who have dominated the red carpet,” co-chair Tania Fares told WWD of the 25 finalists, before adding that jewellery and accessories have also emerged as strong categories in the region.
Lebanese womenswear designer Salim Azzam and Beirut-based Roni Helou, who showed at London Fashion Week in February, scooped up the inaugural ready-to-wear prizes. Krikor Jabotian, also from Lebanon, was awarded the eveningwear accolade. And the Egyptian bag brand Sabry Marouf, Moroccan footwear label Zyne and Lebanese jewellery brand Mukhi Sisters were recognised for achievements in their respective fields. The winner of each category will receive mentorship from FTA’s executive committee, a prize of up to $200,000 (£154,000) tailored to each winner’s business plan, and the opportunity to be stocked on Matchesfashion.com.
“I met so many designers who knew about the British Fashion Council’s fashion trust and told me they wish something would bring the region together in that same way,” Fares told Business of Fashion. “There’s no fashion week, not much press – they don’t have exposure. Arab people might know of these designers, but no one knows about them in the West.” Thanks to this week’s awards, they will they will have met a wealth of global fashion influencers to help them on their way.