Saudi 100 Brands exhibition kicks off in New York, highlighting the Kingdom’s culture and heritage
RIYADH: The Saudi 100 Brands exhibition opened yesterday in New York, showcasing the works of 100 Saudi designers who reflect the Kingdom’s culture and heritage through demi-couture, bridal wear, bags, jewelry and much more.
Princess Reema bint Bandar Al-Saud, Saudi Ambassador to the United States, inaugurated the opening ceremony of the exhibition with a speech.
“I will tell you that the collections you see here are inspired by Arabia, but they are made for the world. This is the magic that the Saudi Fashion Commission brought in bringing the collections to New York, the heart of the fashion world,” she said.
“Creativity is not born in one country. Culture is not defined by a border. And what you are about to see is a symbol that has nothing to do with politics, has nothing to do with governments, but has everything to do with the human spirit.
The Saudi Fashion Commission, under the auspices of the Ministry of Culture, hosted the exhibition and chose the designers based on the uniqueness and cultural relevance of their pieces.
The fashion show will take place from July 26 to August 7, 2022, at the Iron23 venue in New York.
Among the attendees at the opening ceremony were American-Venezuelan fashion designer Carolina Herrera and Lebanese fashion designer Reem Acra.
The Saudi 100 brand is a global traveling exhibition showcasing a curated selection of clothing and accessories from 100 Saudi designers.
Designers were chosen from a group of 1,500 and finalized in the top 100 based on their pieces.
The exhibition is divided into eight categories: ready-to-wear, modest, concept, premiere, demi-couture, bridal, bags and jewelry.
One of the 100 Saudi brands chosen is Loodyana, which was established in Jeddah in 2001 and has been creating pieces for 21 years.
The brand is known for its luxurious ready-to-wear caftans and evening dresses. The creators behind the brand are the Al-Haqbani sisters, born and raised in the Kingdom.
The designers shared that their brand values and design inspirations are rooted in their love for family and the balance women bring to life.
The brand uses intricate embroidery and modern silhouettes to combine traditional and contemporary features in distinct pieces that reflect the culture of the Kingdom.
“We were so excited to have a new experience,” Loodyana co-founder Abeer Al-Haqbani told Arab News.
The designer said she was grateful to be one of the Saudi fashion designers chosen to showcase their work in New York. “We are making history today,” she said.
Loodyana’s design highlighted at the exhibition is a black off-the-shoulder dress with a set of embroidered gloves.
“Women are the backbone of the family. The design of our dress is the beautiful armor that protects the delicate female spirit inside the dress,” Al-Haqbani said.
The design team shared that they were inspired by memories of family reunions as they grew up in the mountains of Saudi Arabia.
“The harsh outline of the distant mountains is the inspiration behind the A-line shape of the dress design. The mystery created by the darkness of the thick fog shrouding the mountains is reflected in the gray sheen of the beadwork hand applied to the fabric,” Al-Haqbani explained.
The co-founder pointed out that the intricate design took more than four months to create.
“Just as there is a fragile and delicate allure hidden in the rugged mountains and rocky landscape, there is an exquisite femininity hidden in the strong silhouette of our dress,” she said.
The designers first discovered that their brand had been selected for the exhibition when they received an email from Princess Reema and Manuel Arnaut, the editor-in-chief of Vogue Arabia.
The exhibition will continue throughout the coming week and is open to the public. Admission is free, but attendees must request a ticket via the link https://www.saudi100brands.nyc.