The Oriental Fashion show will stop over in Tajikistan to display sumptuous collections of caftans and oriental haute couture as part of Tajikistan Fashion Week. The event has been held from November 18th to 20th at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Dushanbe, the capital of the country.
Hind Joudar is pursuing a dream… to bring the Silk Road back to life in a contemporary world. This passionate person whose love for fashion is equalled only by her love for history and travel is working to revive this legendary road through fashion thanks to the association « La Route de la Soie et d’Al Andalous » (The Silk Road and Al-Andalus), of which she is the founder.
Indeed, the Paris-based French-Moroccan women intends to celebrate the memory of an oriental world that once shone with its cultural treasures, by revisiting the fashion of each country on this road, which connects the Orient to the Occident.
And what better way than fashion, the fruit of cultural blending, to illustrate the intertwined history, like threads on a loom, of these countries that were so close in the past. The caftan is the perfect emblem of this common history.
From Fez to Milan, the caftan reshapes its history
2021, the year of recovery and openness to others, marked the return of the Oriental Fashion Show, the flagship event of the “Silk Road and Al-Andalus” association, to the international catwalks. This platform dedicated to Oriental Haute Couture is more than just a fashion show. It carries the values of excellence and opulence of this culture and travels around the world like a caravan stopping at different caravanserais along the Silk Road.
As soon as the borders were opened, the Oriental Fashion show set off for Fez, Morocco, before heading to Marrakech, the famous ochre city.
As home to a long tradition of cultural dialogue, the two Moroccan cities successively hosted two fashion shows featuring the Moroccan caftan, emblem of an oriental culture shared by so many countries around the world.
Fez and Marrakech, true jewels of Moroccan history and capitals of the country’s art of living and craftsmanship, are now on the agenda of the great international fashion capitals thanks to the Oriental Fashion Show.
The Oriental Fashion Show team then headed to Kyrgyzstan, one of the main stops on the Silk Road, for the World Nomads Fashion Festival, which took place from the 15th to 18th of July. Six caftans by Moroccan designer Salma Lazrak were exhibited at the festival, which promotes traditional ethnic outfits from around the world.
A few weeks later, in September, the Oriental Fashion Show took part in Milan Fashion Week for the first time, thus revealing the expertise of Oriental designers on the Milano Moda Dona catwalk in the sumptuous Palazzo Turati.
Milan Fashion Week is particularly important because Italy is a crucial crossroads for fashion and the relationship between the Orient and the Occident as the Genoese and Venetians have always traded with Arabs and oriental countries.
Heading for Tajikistan, a pearl on the Silk Road
After Marco Polo’s Italy, the Oriental Fashion Show is stopping over in Dubai from 11 to 15 November.
The Emirati capital, where Moroccan designers (Miya Couture by Amina BENSOUDA, Mounia AMOURI, Maison TOUAHRI and Ligne XIII by Lamia LAKHSASSI) are very popular, has hosted an exhibition and sale of their creations as part of the second edition of the “Art meets Fashion” event. The OFS, which has established itself as an expression forum for oriental fashion, is pursuing its objective of positioning oriental designers on promising markets and developing the economic and social aspect of fashion.
Then it is on to Tajikistan, its lakes, mountains, myths and legends. Since ancient times, this country which borders China, Afghanistan China, Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan, has been an important commercial and cultural stop on the Silk Road.
Leather goods, jewelry, silk fabrics, colored salts and other goods used to transit across the mountains and valleys surrounded by mountain ridges on their way to Samarkand, China or Afghanistan.
Over the past 20 centuries, Tajik cities have been described as precious pearls along the Silk Road, framed by picturesque landscapes. They were stopovers for oriental caravans and became famous for their crafts, culture and trade.
In Tajikistan, a worthy heir to Persian culture and the only country in Central Asia that still speaks Farsi, the caftan is not a foreign garment. Here too, people wear this garment with its specific Central Asian cut and features. However, it is the first time that the Moroccan caftan will make its appearance here at the 7th edition of the Tajikistan Fashion Week, which has been held from 18 to 20 November at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Dushanbe, the Tajikistan capital.
The three designers Lamia Lakhssassi, Wafaa Idrissi and Zineb Joundy, worthy representatives of the Moroccan caftan, will travel from Morocco to Tajikistan to exhibit their caftan collections and thus establish, through their art, a bridge between their country and the rest of the world.
Abed Mahfouz, an internationally renowned Lebanese designer, will be the guest of honor at the Tajikistan Fashion Week.
Lamia Lakhsassi has graduated from law school and worked in the private sector. She then naturally turned to her true passions: interior design, and then fashion, with the creation of her own Haute Couture house in 1999. From a very young age, she has been fascinated by images, colours and materials, and has been collecting issues of Vogue to make collage paintings, and without knowing it, her first inspiration boards.
Today, Lamia Lakhsassi is distinguished by the creation of a new collection “Ligne XIII”, which is aimed at an ultra-sophisticated clientele with whom she maintains a relationship of trust. Her vision is to respect the codes of the society to perpetuate tradition and craftsmanship, while using the most innovative materials, refined fabrics and infinite shades of embroidery for timeless and daring creations. Modern cuts, graceful falls, and a sharp eye for detail come together to offer unique pieces with mixed and wandering influences. Her signature is colour. Vibrant, rich and harmonious colours find a new meaning in the designer’s universe, just like the Moroccan heritage.
Wafaa Idrissi has graduated from Lasalle International College as a designer and pattern maker. She has worked in fashion workshops, where she has polished her techniques and know-how over the years. For her, fashion is a passion that goes back to her childhood, when as a little girl she was already designing and creating clothes and fashion accessories for her dolls.
Today, her dream has come true and her collections travel the world and are exhibited in “Black touch” and “féminité” in Belgium; in “Chicisme” and “belle et rebelle” in France; and in “Union” and “Alliance” in Morocco. Her latest collection, “Glamour”, a hymn to elegance and refinement, was exhibited in Qatar.
Zineb Joundy has graduated from the school of “La Chambre Syndicale de la Couture Parisienne” and began her career in the world of couture under the watchful eyes of Karl Lagerfeld and Lanvin.
As a passionate and globe-trotting hedonist, Zineb Joundy has been inspired by reflections and creations throughout her professional career.
Zineb Joundy is an emblematic figure of Moroccan creation both nationally and internationally. She gives a new freshness to the caftan’s movements according to a rhythm that is always composed and structured.
Zineb Joundy carries within her the image of a Morocco marked by refinement, tradition and emotion that she seeks to translate through her creations. Her avant-garde collections have been featured in Paris, London, Addis Ababa, New York, Riyadh, Amman, Baku, Moscow, and elsewhere.
In 1999, she was appointed Fashion Commissioner for the Moroccan Times in France. She then joined the “Silk Road and Al-Andalus” association in 2017 with which she travels the world: Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Moscow, Milan and soon Tajikistan.
He is one of the world’s best-known Lebanese designers and will be the guest of honour at Tajikistan Fashion Week, under the banner of the Oriental Fashion Show. He will be showing a most original collection, made of precious and light materials.
This great designer has a unique style. He comes from a modest Lebanese family and grew up in the Land of the Cedars in an environment devoted to couture. It is quite natural that he also chose to make a career in fashion and to open his first wedding dress shop with his sister in 1985 in Beirut.
The success was so overwhelming that he started designing couture collections in the 1990s. It took him less than ten years to organise his first fashion show, during which he presented a complete collection of wedding dresses at the Royal Plaza Hotel in 1999. One success lead to another until Abed Mahfouz launched his couture line in 2002 at the Alta Roma Fashion Week in Rome.
About the Oriental Fashion Show
OFS was created by Hind Joudar in 2004. It is a flagship event of the “Silk Road and Al Andalus” association, whose primary aim is to promote an art of living that is part of a universal heritage. Over the years, the SFO has become more than a fashion show, it has become a real artistic forum, a cultural dialogue between the Orient and the Occident.
For 15 years, the Oriental Fashion Show, based in Paris, has been organising large-scale fashion shows in the world’s most beautiful capitals and high-profile fashion locations such as Paris, London, Doha, Kuwait, Marrakech, Moscow, Istanbul, Almaty (Kazakhstan), Samarkand (Uzbekistan), and Istanbul.
The OFS is considered a leader in oriental fashion and a borderless incubator of talents. Thanks to its several productions, the OFS has been able to promote more than 100 designers of 50 different nationalities, including many Moroccans who have made a name for themselves on the world fashion stage.
By Saif Rahman Sozib