JEDDAH: A leading Saudi fashion designer and founder of Toby by Hatem Alakeel, he is no stranger to creating new and innovative designs. Known for sleek lines and excellent quality of execution, Alakeel’s designs are modern and add a unique twist to Middle Eastern garments that appeal to locals and foreigners alike.
Versatility and comfort — while incorporating both Middle Eastern and Western-style fashion sense in his designs — are the hallmarks of Alakeel’s designs.
This season, he is introducing Sports Lux a la Traditional, incorporating sportswear into the traditional thobe.
“Sportswear is the new fashion and this collection is derived from the DNA of the thobe with a sportswear feel. The message behind this line is going back to the DNA of Toby. The cuts, features, aesthetics are very much part of it and we elevated it so it’s more polished,” Alakeel told Arab News.
“Sportswear is viewed as casual, practical and, unfortunately at times, it may come across as sloppy. I wanted to present more polished, more high-end pieces of sportswear, hence the name Sports Lux a la Traditional.”
The designer said he revamped the traditional thobe into a more Western-style garment. The sports-luxe meets traditional look is seen through his sleek and straight lines and finishings, while he has added some arabesque embroidery on the collar and sleeve cuffs.
Sticking to Toby’s color palette, the line includes shirts, thobes, pants and bombers or shirt jackets in colors that include black and white, navy blue and grey.
Alakeel designed this year’s BMG annual Polo Cup players’ t-shirts. His designs were worn by Prince William and Saudi Arabia’s newly appointed chairman of the Saudi Polo Federation, Amr Zedan during the friendly match between the British and Saudi teams on July 12.
Every summer, members of the European and Middle Eastern royal families, political and business leaders, and celebrities gather at the annual charitable equestrian event, which is hosted by the BMG Foundation, with proceeds donated to a range of environmental and humanitarian causes.