|Designer Rabia Z.|
Designer Rabia Z from Dubai showed her stunning Mukhawara Collection at Casa La Femme, a romantic and richly decorated Egyptian restaurant in the West Village, New York City. Guests were seated at carved dark wooden tables gently lit with candles and booths draped in colorful organza. Rabia Z’s collection is inspired by her vision of “an American stylista, who travels from West to East, charming the world with her poise and panache”. Titled “Traditions. Today. Tomorrow.”, the collection is influenced by the designer’s traditional Afghani Arab background and has innovative, modern touches.
The mukhawara is a “long traditional dress worn by the Emirati and GCC women”, according to the show notes. The beautifully draped pieces were in rich jewel tones of purple, turquoise, and electric blue and embellished with screen-printings of age-old Mukhawara embroidery in contrasting colors along the collar, sleeves, or waist. The looks were modest yet alluring, traditional yet modern. Without displaying any skin besides the face and hands, the Mukhawaras still managed to highlight the beauty and grace of the female form. Having never worn a Mukhawara before, I was curious to try it on.
The show closed with comments from famed celebrity stylist Kithe Brewster, who produced and provided styling direction for the show. He had discovered Rabia Z. over four years ago in Dubai when he judged an emerging designer contest that Rabia Z. had won, and was wowed by her work. Mr. Brewster described the collection as being very worldly and felt it would provide an excellent option for the Islamic community. For more information about Rabia Z.’s collection, please visit RabiaZ.com.