Mounay gives the kaftan a contemporary update

Mounay’s 2018 Ramadan edit is all about eastern glamor. (Photos supplied)
Updated 13 June 2018
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Mounay gives the kaftan a contemporary update

  • Regional contemporary ready-to-wear brand Mounay’s Ramadan edit for 2018 is all about eastern glamour
  • The brand is the brainchild of creative director Mona Ead Mikati

DUBAI: One of our favorite things about some Ramadan capsule collections is that they don’t go out of style once the Holy Month is over — they last well into the Eid period and beyond. One label has released some of the most versatile, timeless and easy-to-wear looks in its seasonal capsule that fashion lovers will no doubt be revisiting in the months to come.

Regional contemporary ready-to-wear brand Mounay’s Ramadan edit for 2018 is all about eastern glamor, with flirty, loose cuts and charming gathers, tailored looks and delicate piping that all stand out in its latest range of abayas, capes and kaftans. Comprising soft whites mixed with deep, darker tones — not to mention a dash of gold foiling here and there — each piece features sharp lines cut through beautiful gentle forms. The result is a sartorial collection full of contrasts in texture, color and volume. Impossibly feminine, a particular gem are Mounay’s signature oversized sleeves that are very flattering.

Mounay, which was launched in 2013, is, who juggles her work between Dubai and Beirut. The brand prides itself on its “carefully picked fabric, beautifully designed cuts and eye-catching colors,” according to its website.


Explaining the design process to Arab News, Mikati — who majored in business at the American University of Beirut before going on to study at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York — said: “The creative process going through this collection was challenging as I wanted to introduce a contemporary take on traditional, Arabic-style kaftans.”

For Mikati, Mounay is all about the “mélange of the feminine and the edgy,” creating a contemporary ready-to-wear label “that seamlessly embodies and empowers the woman of today.”

In an interview with blogger Lana El-Sahely, published on the influencer’s website, she elaborated: “Every collection has to offer something new while keeping the brand’s identity from one season to another. The ‘Mounay woman’ is modern and edgy, but is also very proud of her feminine side and not afraid to show it.”

She continued: “It is very important for Mounay garments to be as beautifully made on the inside as the outside. I am very lucky to have a wonderful, detail-oriented and very professional production team based in Beirut. We work on each piece as if it was our only one.”

As mentioned earlier, the word “timeless” is one that can be associated with this brand, and this is perhaps down to Mikati’s personal style.

“I usually prefer classic items as they are timeless, but make sure to give my outfits a more contemporary twist by paying attention to little details. I’d definitely rather look overdressed than be under-dressed,” she told El-Sahely.

And her fashion icons also seem to be timeless in their style.

“My all-time favorite is Audrey Hepburn, because I am a fan of classic beauty and elegance. I also always make sure to check out Queen Rania of Jordan’s latest outfits — the lady-like elegance she portrays is very inspirational,” the designer said, according to lanaelsahely.com.

The collection is available online via mounay.com, ounass.com or at the Tryano department store in Abu Dhabi, the UAE.


Arab Luxury World 2019: Experts gather to learn more about Saudi women’s luxury spending habits

Updated 13 June 2019
0

Arab Luxury World 2019: Experts gather to learn more about Saudi women’s luxury spending habits

DUBAI: The lure of Saudi Arabia as a market for luxury retail was evident in the packed hall as Mathieu Yarak of the Choueiri Group took to the stage at the Arab Luxury World forum on Thursday to shed light on the purchasing habits of Saudi female consumers who go for luxury items.

Based on a research study conducted by the Choueiri Group in collaboration with market research firm Ipsos, the findings explained the “complex” journey an affluent Saudi woman embarks on when she decides to purchase a luxury accessory, in this case “handbags, watches and jewelry.”

A sample of 350 Saudi women of an affluent background were interviewed about their spending habits, with some surprising findings unveiled.

Yarak took to the stage in Dubai to explain the journey such women take when purchasing a luxury item, and split it into four parts: Research; shortlisting; reassurance and purchasing.

With the concept of “change or reward” listed as the top trigger when it comes to purchasing a luxury accessory, Yarak went on to explain that an overwhelming number of the women polled looked to the brand’s website to firm up their decision about what to buy, with the social media platforms coming in second.

When it comes to shortlisting the items, various factors come into play, including the brand’s identity, price and country of origin, with the traditional association of France and Switzerland with bags and watches, respectively, still holding weight in Saudi Arabia.

This, Yarak pointed out, is something luxury brands need to highlight in their conversation with Saudi women — “it’s all about heritage,” he said.

The brand’s availability in Saudi Arabia also played a major role in the polled women’s desire to purchase items, with an overwhelming chorus of “no” heard when they were asked if they are happy shopping online for high-end goods.

While the research, shortlisting and reassurance stages all take place online — with potential buyers visiting the brand’s website, luxury e-tailers and social media — the preferred point of purchase is largely bricks-and-mortar, with respondents saying the attention, care and service they receive in stores is what keep them coming back.

Participants also highlighted their desire for more localized advertising, with calls for Arabic-language campaigns and more Middle Eastern-looking faces standing out as a major opportunity for international luxury brands when it comes to their strategy in Saudi Arabia.