Katy Perry turns to Lebanon’s designer-to-the-stars Elie Saab

Katy Perry wore a gown by Lebanese designer Elie Saab. (AFP)
Updated 10 February 2019

Katy Perry turns to Lebanon’s designer-to-the-stars Elie Saab

DUBAI: US singer Katy Perry showed off a whimsical floral gown by Lebanese couturier Elie Saab over the weekend at a charity awards gala honoring country singer Dolly Parton in Los Angeles.
Perry walked the red carpet in a caped gown from Elie Saab’s ready-to-wear Spring/Summer 2019 collection.
Parton became the first country singer to receive the MusiCares Person of the Year award at the event on Friday, taking to the stage with jokes about hillbillies.
Comedy played a large role in a night of all-star musical performances in Los Angeles to honor Parton for her music and philanthropy, hosted by country group Little Big Town.
Eight-time Grammy winner Parton, the singer and songwriter behind the hits ‘9 to 5,’ ‘Jolene’ and ‘I Will Always Love You,’ got the biggest laughs at the 29th annual gala for MusiCares, which helps members of the music industry in need.
Garth Brooks, Brandi Carlile, Miley Cyrus, Shawn Mendes, Kacey Musgraves, Willie Nelson, Katy Perry, Pink, Chris Stapleton and Don Henley were among those honoring the 73-year-old singer-songwriter two days before the Grammy Awards, the Associated Press reported.
‘I loved yee-hawing with my country (queen) @spaceykacey for (the) queen @dollyparton. I would never brave Friday night traffic in LA for anyone else,’ Katy Perry posted on Instagram, referring to her performance with country singer Kacey Musgraves.


Surprising Parton with her award and earning a standing ovation were Emmylou Harris and Linda Ronstadt, who teamed with Parton for two successful ‘Trio’ albums. It was a rare public appearance for Ronstadt, who can’t sing anymore because of Parkinson’s disease, which Parton mentioned.
As Parton rushed to embrace Harris and Ronstadt, her award crashed to the floor. It appeared to survive intact.
Parton, whose career began with appearances at the age of 10 on radio stations in her native Tennessee, appeared to touch on some of the concerns of the #MeToo movement and sexual misconduct in entertainment and other industries, when she described entering the music business when it was a ‘man’s world.’
‘Buddy, I had a ball,’ she said to more laughs. ‘Because I have actually worked with so many wonderful men and I’ve never met a man that I didn’t like and I’ve never met a man whose a** I couldn’t kick if he didn’t treat me with the right respect.’
Friday’s gala raised $6.7 million for MusiCares, Recording Academy President and CEO Neil Portnow told the audience.
Parton was also honored on Sunday with another tribute at the Grammy Awards.

Dubai handbag brand gets royal approval

Creative director Hanna Ransjo with a HALM bag. (Supplied)
Updated 21 August 2019

Dubai handbag brand gets royal approval

DUBAI: HALM is the Dubai-based handbag brand whose discreet take on design has caught the eye of several of the region’s tastemakers including Queen Rania of Jordan.

Across fashion, there is a “new luxury” that you can see taking momentum, and nowhere is it more obvious than in the women’s go-to item, the handbag. HALM embodies that emerging trend.

With Swedish creative director Hanna Ransjo, who has lived in the Emirates over 25 years, and British project manager Hannah Louise Brewer, who came from womenswear label Temperley London, the company has gone from strength to strength.

The duo have merged the best of three cultures into their two-year-old brand: Scandinavian minimalism, British pragmatism and Dubai’s love for luxury. Theirs is a “Made in the Middle East” label that embodies global fashion’s move towards blending minimalism and maximalism. 

Their signature bag, Chilluxe, works as a perfect day to night accessory, and was given the ultimate seal of approval when Queen Rania carried it at her first official engagement of 2019. On a visit to the Children’s Museum — she stepped out in a checked buttoned top by A.W.A.K.E, paired with an asymmetric navy skirt — her hand firmly clutched a HALM bag.

“We see this bag as ‘relaxed understated luxe,’ elegant yet chilled, designed in such a way as to gently soften with wear, yet maintain its core signature structure,” said Ransjo. Another edition is set to follow in their next collection.  

Brewer added: “It was a very conscious decision to keep branding on the bag to a minimum — we want the customer to know that they will be buying quality and design, not just a name.” HALM is helping to change the notion that “Made in the Middle East” is about maximal design and shows how the region is embracing the new feel of luxury.