Meet Jacob Abrian, the high achieving head of the Arab Fashion Council

Updated 12 April 2018
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Meet Jacob Abrian, the high achieving head of the Arab Fashion Council

RIYADH: Jacob Abrian, 26-year-old model, founder and CEO of the Arab Fashion Council (AFC), which organizes Arab Fashion Week (AFW), is optimistic about the future of the Arab fashion industry, particularly in Saudi Arabia.

“There are many Saudi talents,” Abrian told Arab News on the eve of the AFW 2018 in Riyadh. “But they were hidden or exclusive and now we will spread them to the world.”

Abrian has mixed Lebanese-Italian heritage. Both countries have had a major impact on the fashion industry, and Abrian knows that talent alone will not be enough to sustain a successful fashion scene in the GCC.

“I wanted to bring that infrastructure that Italy has in the fashion world to our region,” he explained. “I’m not focusing so much on Arab Fashion Week itself, rather we’re working on that to promote and focus on the infrastructure.

“With the right education and platform anything can happen,” he continued, adding that the AFC plans to set up a fashion university in the Kingdom. “In regard to local designers, our main role is to scout and support them, give them a platform to grow. Currently, local designers just have potential; everything starts from education and work experience. It should all be connecting together and this is the course we want to bring to Saudi.”

Abrian has seen enough to be sure that there is a bright future for young Arab designers. “Three years ago we launched a scholarship for the Arab world,” he said. “A Saudi student won that competition. He was so passionate and I felt that, with the right tools, that student could have a bright future. Two years later, he sent us his portfolio and we were amazed. He’s now a fashion editor at one of the most important magazines in the world.”

Success stories like that motivate Abrian to keep pushing Arab fashion forward, and Arab Fashion Week is the biggest milestone so far in that journey.

“It’s a sign that Saudi is changing,” he said of the event. “I’m proud to say that Saudi is going to surprise everyone around the world in a top-notch manner.

“This is a great start,” he continued. “It’s exciting. We’re building history.”

FASTFACTS

BIO

Jacob Abrian is the founder and CEO of the Arab Fashion Council (AFC), the world’s largest non-profit fashion council. It represents the 22 Arabic countries that are members of the Arab League. He founded the council aged 22, becoming the youngest person ever to found an international extraterritorial authority. Abrian is also a successful model.


Kylie Jenner can’t get enough of this Kuwaiti designer

Updated 15 December 2018
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Kylie Jenner can’t get enough of this Kuwaiti designer

DUBAI: The third time’s proven to be a charm for makeup mogul Kylie Jenner as she took to Instagram wearing yet another sparkling outfit by Kuwaiti designer Yousef Al-Jasmi over the weekend.
Jenner posted a photo on Instagram Friday in which she is seen wearing a sparkling, see-through dress by the designer, who is known for his love of crystals and all things sparkly.
The Kuwaiti designer reposted the snaps on his own account, alongside a series of fire and heart emojis.
The sheer, figure-hugging dress is embellished with dazzling gemstones and Jenner finished off the look with a sleek high pony tail and dramatic makeup.

(Instagram)


It seems that Jenner is quite the fan as in September the reality TV star took to Instagram to build up hype for a cosmetics launch — and she wore a catsuit by none other than Al-Jasmi.
For his part, the designer took to Instagram at the time to share the promotional image of Jenner and her best friend, Jordyn Woods, in which both celebrities wore outfits from his collection.
Woods was pictured wearing a mini dress with revealing cut outs, while new mother Jenner wore a dazzling, fitted catsuit.
That wasn’t the first time the Kardashian sibling has worn a show-stopping dress by the designer — she previously stepped out in a barely there, silver number designed by Al-Jasmi during New York Fashion Week in 2016.
And Jenner isn’t the only celebrity fan the Kuwait-based style guru has won over — queen of the catwalk Naomi Campbell wore a daring minidress by Al-Jasmi to a Halloween party in New York in October.
Campbell glittered in a silver, almost sheer, dress with a peekaboo cutout and cold-shoulder details.
Also in October, US singer Kelly Rowland attended a charity event in Los Angles wearing a glittering, rose gold gown by the Kuwaiti designer, with a high collar and slit at the back. She accented the figure-hugging dress with a pair of dazzling earrings and slicked-back hair.
Meanwhile, legendary singer Mariah Carey chose a black, embellished dress from his collection for October’s American Music Awards. It was a dramatic choice due to its sheer skirt and flamboyant feathered detailing.
And if those stars aren’t enough to prove Al-Jasmi is a force to be reckoned with, he has also dressed the likes of Lady Gaga, Beyoncé and Jennifer Lopez.