Arab-origin, Muslim models take over runways at Milan Fashion Week

Amina Adan and Halima Aden walked the runway for Max Mara. (@amina_adan)
Updated 25 February 2018
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Arab-origin, Muslim models take over runways at Milan Fashion Week

DUBAI: From Somali-American star Halima Aden to lesser known beauty Amina Adan, hijab-wearing models and beauties of Arab descent are taking Milan Fashion Week by storm.
Both models walked for Max Mara in the brand’s Autumn/Winter 2018 show on Thursday, alongside such fashion stars as Gigi Hadid and Cindy Crawford’s daughter, Kaia Gerber.
Aden sported a silky headscarf and skirt-and-trousers combination while Adan, who was raised in Denmark, showed off a grey checkered blazer paired with a black leopard-print scarf.
After the show, Adan took to her Instagram page to thank Max Mara for the experience, posting: “Thank you for this amazing experience, @maxmara.”
Far from being the only Muslim models to take Milan by storm, the pair were joined in the fashion-forward city by models-of-the-moment Gigi and Bella Hadid, both of whom walked in a variety of shows, including Missoni, Versace and Alberta Ferretti.

Thank you for this amazing experience @maxmara #Aminainmilan

A post shared by Amina Adan (@amina_adan) on

For her part, Imaan Hammam, a Dutch model of Egyptian and Moroccan descent, walked the runway for Versace on Friday, dressed in a figure-hugging, belted black mini-dress.

Backstage @versace

A post shared by Imaan Hammam (@imaanhammam) on

However, despite the two hijab-clad models and litany of international names garnering praise from pro-diversity fashion insiders, some critics are slamming Italian fashion house Gucci for outfitting white models with headscarves and turbans in the brand’s Feb. 22 show.
Actor and model Avan Jogia sparked debate on Twitter after he tweeted a photo of a white model wearing a turban, saying: “Yo, @gucci... I mess with you guys... but this isn’t a good look for you... could you not find a brown model?”
Meanwhile, fashion photographer Faiyaz Kolia told Indie magazine that “Gucci got to pick and choose from cultural imagery all the things that are aligned to their ‘fantasy’ narrative without any consequences, and then so easily put on white skin… What message does that send? That it’s ok to wear a hijab if you’re young, beautiful, rich, and white but not if you’re actually a Muslim or a person of color?”


Imaan Hammam gets colorful in Versace

Updated 22 September 2018
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Imaan Hammam gets colorful in Versace

DUBAI: Italy’s Versace played with bold prints, patchwork and leather in its Spring/Summer 2019 women’s collection in a star-studded show on Friday, the third day of Milan’s fashion week.
Dutch-Moroccan-Egyptian model Imaan Hammam, who has walked for the fashion house before, took to the runway in an elaborated denim pantsuit emblazoned with Versace’s flagship prints in neon colors.

Imaan Hammam. (AFP)


Meanwhile, celebrity model Bella Hadid, who walked the show with sister Gigi, wore a tight one-shouldered mini dress in yellow leather and matching sneakers.
Singers Leona Lewis, Nicki Minaj and Rita Ora, model Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, actor Luke Evans and Italian influencer Chiara Ferragni were all in the front row of an enormous industrial space in the modern CityLife neighborhood where the runway show was held, Reuters reported.

Bella Hadid. (AFP)


Pale yellow walls formed a background to a carpeted floor that echoed some of the prints used in the collection — colored stripes, bright flowers over pinstripes, checks, roses and small flowers mimicking animal prints.
“The style of the Versace woman is so recognizable that it need not be explained. She is not afraid of showing her personality and she is extremely feminine and confident,” read a style note by the fashion house, known for its daring designs.
Close-fitting silhouettes, ruched flared trousers and layered looks, with tulle mini-dresses paired with silk-printed longer ones, designed by Artistic Director and Vice President Donatella Versace, paraded down the catwalk in orange, violet and lime colors.

Gigi Hadid. (AFP)


“The all-over prints of the clothes are overlapped with neat nonchalance,” the note said.
For the evening, Versace flaunted a black satin tuxedo paired with flared trousers, or knee-length leather skirts with golden buttons.
Nineties supermodel Shalom Harlow closed the show, donning a long tulle dress with colorful flower embellishments that flared out in a transparent, sparkly black skirt.
Some of the models carried big boxed bags that echoed old-fashioned travel trunks, or large PVC shopping bags emblazoned with Versace writing. On their feet they wore chunky sneakers, college shoes, or square-heeled sandals, while their ears featured big flower-shaped ear-cuffs matched with hairpins.
The brand with the famed Medusa logo said that her “mystic powers and ever-powerful persona are evident now more than ever,” according to the show notes.
Fake snakeskin, flowers, polished leather and layer upon layer, the Versace collection was eclectic and refined, AFP noted in its review.