SemSem’s Ramadan line has a charitable twist

US-Somali model Halima Aden has worked with SemSem in the past. (Supplied)
Updated 22 May 2018
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SemSem’s Ramadan line has a charitable twist

LONDON: Famed French fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent once said that the city of Marrakesh taught him color. It seems that the Moroccan city has struck again, serving as the inspiration for SemSem’s bold Ramadan line this season.

With its mélange of cultural currents and cosmopolitan charge, the bustle of Marrakesh is manifest in SemSem’s red-based collection. A brassy fire-engine trench and gilded-blush maxi are among the highlights of the edit, available exclusively at luxury e-tailers The Modist and Ounass.

For those seeking bold, iftar-appropriate looks this season, SemSem’s berry-red jumpsuit or high-low hemmed jacquard top are both beautiful, souk-inspired statement pieces.  Floral prints appearing throughout the collection recall the Majorelle garden, Saint Laurent’s lush Marrakesh property. Separates, including tailored pants befitting the refined city-stroller, can be paired with the collection’s pleated tops or layered for dramatic effect. 

Self-consciously eschewing derivatives of slouched kaftans, the pieces all feature refined, structured cuts. True to the brand’s aesthetic, SemSem’s Ramadan collection is an unabashed ode to modern, metropolitan femininity.

Founder Abeer Al-Otaiba, who originally hails from Egypt, says this year’s Ramadan edit was “deeply personal.

“I wanted it to be beautiful, impactful and reflective of my heritage,” Al-Otaiba said.  “I enjoy the sense of purpose Ramadan represents and I try to embrace all that it has to offer. Creating this collection is an extension of this time of introspection and celebration.”

A dedicated philanthropist with a degree in civil engineering and stints spent living across the Middle East, Europe and America, Al-Otaiba created SemSem in 2015 as a way to celebrate women and children across the globe. Bestowing the label with her daughter’s nickname, Al-Otaiba’s vision has allowed SemSem to mature in a few short years, emerging at the forefront of the luxury, ready-to-wear market.

With lines for both women and girls, the brand has become a favorite of multi-tasking mothers seeking balance and an elegant wardrobe with a charitable sense of purpose. Every season, Al-Otaiba teams up with a non-profit promoting the well-being of women and children. This year, 10 percent of the sales from the brand’s Ramadan collection sold at Ounass will go to causes supported by the Dubai Cares charity.

Previously, Al-Otaiba sought to raise awareness about maternal mortality rates and youth illiteracy, supporting organizations working across Africa to empower women and children. 

Insisting on the confluence of doing good and dressing well, SemSem has become a celebrity favorite, worn by conscientious Hollywood moms like Blake Lively and Kourtney Kardashian. Showing at Paris Fashion Week and regularly written up in Vogue, SemSem has brought a jet-set chic to mother-daughter wear. 

But the line’s ethos isn’t about red-carpet glitter. Encouraging mothers to instill a sense of global awareness and dedication to philanthropy in their daughters lies at the heart of the SemSem’s mission. It’s a perfect conversation — and the perfect conversation-provoking ensembles— to have this Ramadan season.


Chrissy Teigen sports a look by Madiyah Al-Sharqi

Chrissy Teigen at an event. (AFP)
Updated 23 October 2018
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Chrissy Teigen sports a look by Madiyah Al-Sharqi

DUBAI: Model and social media superstar Chrissy Teigen was spotted wearing an item by UAE-based brand Madiyah Al-Sharqi last week — and it’s giving us major style envy.

The model — who is known for her witty, off-the-cuff commentary and political activism on Twitter and Instagram — hit the streets of New York with her husband John Legend in tow while wearing a pair of high-waisted velvet trousers.

(Getty)

The mustard-colored pants hail from the Fujairah-based brand’s Autumn/Winter 2018 collection and are available on madiyahalsharqi.com.

The label is also available online on e-tailers Ounass and By Symphony.

Since founding the fashion house in 2012, Al-Sharqi ‘s collections have received international acclaim and have been featured in the likes of Vogue Italia, Vogue Arabia, Harper’s Bazaar Arabia and Grazia.
Based in the Emirate of Fujairah, which is relatively unknown on the fashion scene compared to its internationally acclaimed sister state of Dubai, the label is making headway on the Hollywood circuit and was even worn by Paris Jackson in June and by US singer and actress Vanessa Hudgens on the set of the TV show “So You Think You Can Dance” in August.

For her part, Hudgens looked stunning in a lamé corset with lace-up detailing on the back and a sweetheart neckline. Matching, wide-legged trousers completed the 70s-style look that came in a pretty mix of pastel shades, including lilac, peach, sunny yellow and silver.

“Last night’s look on @danceonfox,” Hudgens, who shot to fame after starring in the hugely popular series of High School Musical films during the noughties, posted on her Instagram account at the time. Hudgens worked with celebrity stylist Natalie Saidi to achieve the shimmery look.

Teigen, who recently took to social media to educate fans on how to properly say her name, paired her Madiyah Al-Sharqi trousers with a white, fitted top, knee-length navy blazer and a demure Chanel bag.

In September, she teasingly chastised the media and fans for mispronouncing her last name saying it had been garbled for years, but she hasn’t corrected anyone.

The mother and model took to social media to say it’s not Teigen (TEE’-gihn), but Teigen (TY’-gihn). Off camera, her mother confirmed it with a “Yep!” according to The Associated Press.

The 32-year-old joked that she’s “tired of living this lie.”

She previously wrote on Twitter that her name has been mispronounced and she “doesn’t correct people, ever.”