Moroccan designers among finalists for prestigious French ANDAM fashion award

Moroccan designers among finalists for prestigious French ANDAM fashion award
Casablanca is among the 14 finalists up for the prestigious prize. Photographed by Remi Ferrante
Short Url
Updated 05 June 2021

Moroccan designers among finalists for prestigious French ANDAM fashion award

Moroccan designers among finalists for prestigious French ANDAM fashion award

DUBAI: Casablanca, the brainchild of French-Moroccan designer Charaf Tajer and Sonia Ahmimou’s fashion label Aswad have been chosen as finalists for the grand prize and accessories prize of the 2021 ANDAM Fashion Award.

The ANDAM Fashion Award was established in 1989 by Nathalie Dufour as a joint venture between the French Ministry of Culture and the Defi Mode fashion organization in an effort to nurture young talent from Europe. The award comes with 300,000 euros ($364,996) and a year of coaching from Balenciaga chief executive officer Cédric Charbit, the president of this year’s jury.

Tajer’s buzzy Parisian label is a contender for  the award, alongside a pool of talented design mavens, which include Berlin-based design duo Serhat Işık and Benjamin A. Huseby of GmbH, London-based Grace Wales Bonner, winner of the LVMH Prize for Young Designers in 2016, and New York’s Area, spearheaded by Beckett Fogg and Piotrek Panszczyk.

Rounding out the list are London-based womenswear designer Rok Hwang, who established his Rokh label in 2016, and London-based menswear designer Bianca Saunders.

“It is an honor to have been announced as a finalist for the Grand Prize of this year’s ANDAM Fashion Award,” wrote Tajer in a statement posted on Casablanca’s official Instagram. 

“We are extremely proud to show what we have achieved so far and to display our grand ambitions for Casablanca to such a prestigious and inspirational ANDAM jury. We’re thrilled to have been nominated alongside many of our esteemed and talented designers.”

Meanwhile, Ahmimou, the Moroccan-French accessories designer who launched Aswad, her own brand of leather goods in 2016, has been nominated for the Accessories Prize, valued at 50,000 euros. Other contenders include jeweler Samuel François and Austrian studio Published By.

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Aswad (@aswad.paris)

Finalists were chosen from more than 300 designers who applied for the award.

The 2021 ANDAM Fashion Award winners will be selected by a jury that consists of Blackpink’s Lisa, Chinese singer Chris Lee and fashion designers Kerby Jean-Raymond and Phoebe Philo, among others, on July 1.

All finalists will present their collections to the jury in Paris on that day.

Past winners include Martin Margiela, Viktor & Rolf, Christophe Lemaire and Jeremy Scott.


Asti Symphony Orchestra heads to AlUla to perform with Andrea Bocelli

Asti Symphony Orchestra heads to AlUla to perform with Andrea Bocelli
Updated 19 January 2022

Asti Symphony Orchestra heads to AlUla to perform with Andrea Bocelli

Asti Symphony Orchestra heads to AlUla to perform with Andrea Bocelli
  • Orchestra president: ‘Playing in AlUla is an honor for us. It will be an unforgettable experience’
  • It is the world-renowned tenor’s fourth performance at the UNESCO World Heritage Site

ROME: The musicians of the Asti Symphony Orchestra have said they are honored to be playing at the Maraya Concert Hall in AlUla on Friday with Andrea Bocelli, the world’s most popular living tenor.

The concert, which has long been sold out, will be Bocelli’s fourth performance in AlUla, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It will be streamed on the tenor’s YouTube channel.

The 130 musicians who will play with Bocelli in AlUla flew out on Wednesday from the Italian city of Turin.

“We have often been called to accompany Maestro Bocelli,” Enrico Bellati, president of the Asti Symphony Orchestra, told Italian daily La Stampa. “Playing in AlUla is an honor for us. It will be another unforgettable experience.”

The concert will be an evening of opera and pop, and will include Bocelli’s greatest hits such as the famous aria “Nessun Dorma.”

Founded in 2014, the orchestra is based in Meta, a small town in the Italian region of Piedmont.


British entrepreneur Dr. Tara Lalvani reveals how her game-changing beauty tool came to be

British entrepreneur Dr. Tara Lalvani reveals how her game-changing beauty tool came to be
Updated 19 January 2022

British entrepreneur Dr. Tara Lalvani reveals how her game-changing beauty tool came to be

British entrepreneur Dr. Tara Lalvani reveals how her game-changing beauty tool came to be

DUBAI: If you can’t find it, make it! So goes the philosophy behind many brands, including Beautifect. The new beauty line based in London is known for its revolutionary Beautifect box, a tech-enabled device for applying, storing and carrying makeup.

The idea behind the Beautifect box came to British founder Dr. Tara Lalvani four and a half years ago while on the plane. “I was on my way to Dubai, and I just got the kids to finally sleep. I was thinking about the day ahead, about the hotel, about how poor the lighting was going to be and how I would get ready while managing my kids, and that’s when the idea of Beautifect occurred to me,” she told Arab News.

The Beautifect Box is a chargable beauty device for applying, carrying and storing makeup. 

A dental surgeon, Dr. Lalvani had no plans to launch her own business. In fact, before she had the idea to create the Beautifect box, she had her mind set on purchasing a product that could serve as a portable dressing table when she realized such a thing didn’t exist. “How could something so obvious not be already out there?” she proclaimed.

“Before I even landed, I decided that if it was out there, I was going to buy it. If it wasn’t, then I was going to create it because it would help every woman in the same position. I couldn’t believe that in this day and age, we were still struggling to get the right lighting and still being tied down to one place. And that’s really when the whole idea was born,” she explained.

What makes the product so special is the lighting, which took Dr. Lalvani over two years to perfect. The Beautifect box features five different lighting options that simulate different lighting environments so women can do their makeup more accurately. “Lighting completely changes the look of your makeup. There is no better lighting for makeup on the market than the Beautifect light,” shared the entrepreneur.

The portable device bills itself as the beauty equivalent to a laptop. 

The beauty equivalent of a laptop, the added benefit of the chargeable Beautifect box is that it allows women to do their makeup anywhere, whether they are in the back of an Uber on their way to a meeting or lounging on the sofa before dinner plans. A single charge lasts up to a month, and in an age when women are busier than ever, juggling careers and motherhood, the Beautifect box is quite revolutionary.

“We have such busy lives now. How can we still be doing our makeup the same way we’ve been doing it for generations? With Beautifect, you can do it on your schedule. You no longer have to sit at a dressing table in a separate room for something that you do every day,” shared Dr. Lalvani.

After launching Beautifect, the entrepreneur realized that dentistry was never really her passion. “All my life, I’ve always been a massive beauty lover, but after training for six years to be a dentist and practicing for over a decade in London, I didn’t imagine I would do anything else,” she recalled. Her profession as a dentist, however, did heavily inform the creative process of her brand. “After I launched, a friend of mine pointed out that the way I designed the storage in the Beautifect box reminded them of a dental tray,” she mused.

The chargeable Beautifect box is that it allows women to do their makeup anywhere.

Despite launching in the middle of a global pandemic, Beautifect was an instant hit when it landed on shelves at Harrods and online on Ounass and Dr. Lalvani’s own website. The entrepreneur attributes some of the success to the rise of social media platforms like TikTok during the pandemic. “We live in a time in which makeup isn’t necessarily just for going out. I designed the product around the social media age. We need to be able to film content, take selfies,” explained Dr. Lalvani.

Today, the Beautifect line boasts a beauty blender, Mulberry silk eye mask, crystal nail file, vanity bag and tote.

With an oversaturation of eyeshadow palettes, foundations and lipsticks on the market, Dr. Lalvani reveals she wants to focus her brand on beauty tools and devices. “Cosmetic brands are focused on makeup and when it comes to tools, they’re almost an afterthought,” she shared. “Our focus is on creating the best tools in their categories.”

You can shop the products on Beautifect.com. 


The top interior design trends of 2022 revealed

The top interior design trends of 2022 revealed
Updated 19 January 2022

The top interior design trends of 2022 revealed

The top interior design trends of 2022 revealed

DUBAI: A fresh year could prompt you to hit the refresh button on your living space. To give your interiors a facelift that mirrors your personal style, Saudi Arabia-based interiors brand Aura Living has shared the top design trends for 2022.

Comfortable rooms, flexible spaces

As we spend more time at home, we are moving away from rigid structures and formal living spaces and seeing a more open approach toward spaces that are welcoming and adaptive. Lounge areas and family rooms have become an individual’s main priority. But that doesn’t mean what is functional can’t be aesthetically chic — the key is to create the perfect balance between elegance and practicality. Take the Morzine sofa from Aura’s Fall 2021 line for instance. With practicality in mind, this modular sofa is designed to offer flexibility to design layouts, making a space equal parts comfy and elegant.

Morzine Sectional Sofa. Supplied

Vibrant hues

Paint trends will fall into two distinct camps this year: Earthy, organic shades and vibrant, energizing hues, which were popular in the 1950s. However, that does not necessarily mean that you need to invade your house with painterly pops. Rather, add vibrant shades of color where you feel suitable. Start with a neutral color palette as this will help you incorporate color easily and switch it up from time to time.

Supplied

Curves

Sculptural furnishing and feminine shapes are rapidly finding their way into sanctuaries this season. From curved sofas, to dining chairs, beds and cabinets, the options are endless. Arches, angled edges and wavy design accessories are all present within Aura’s Fall 2021 collection. You can opt for side chairs or single-seated sofas such as Aura’s Lezoux chair in soft pink, or the Joy chair in cobalt blue.

Supplied

Texture

Even the most basic neutral palettes can feel layered and exceptional when lots of different textures are incorporated. In the coming year, mastering that mix is going to be paramount. The easiest way to add texture into your decor is through fabrics and textiles. Start with smaller items, such as cushions, rugs and throws, that can be easily moved around or replaced should you want a quick interior update in the future. 

 


US actor Mahershala Ali nominated for NAACP Image Award

US actor Mahershala Ali nominated for NAACP Image Award
Updated 19 January 2022

US actor Mahershala Ali nominated for NAACP Image Award

US actor Mahershala Ali nominated for NAACP Image Award

 

DUBAI: US actor Mahershala Ali, who is Muslim, has been nominated in the best actor category at this month’s NAACP Image Awards, organizers announced this week.

The Oscar and Emmy winner will compete against LaKeith Stanfield, Denzel Washington, Jonathon Majors and Will Smith.

Meanwhile, Netflix emerged with a leading 52 nominations, including for the film “The Harder They Fall.” The movie — featuring a star-studded cast including Regina King, Jonathan Majors, Idris Elba and Stanfield — pulled in 12 nominations, including for best picture. 

Issa Rae’s “Insecure” earned 13 nominations, including best comedy television series. 

The nominees for best actress in a film are Andra Day, Halle Berry, Jennifer Hudson, Tessa Thompson and Zendaya.

The two-hour awards show, hosted by Anthony Anderson, will be broadcast on Feb. 26.


Arab influencer Karen Wazen is the new global ambassador for Roberto Cavalli

Arab influencer Karen Wazen is the new global ambassador for Roberto Cavalli
Updated 19 January 2022

Arab influencer Karen Wazen is the new global ambassador for Roberto Cavalli

Arab influencer Karen Wazen is the new global ambassador for Roberto Cavalli

DUBAI: Fashion influencer and designer Karen Wazen has been unveiled as the new face of Italian label Roberto Cavalli. The Dubai-based Lebanese content creator and entrepreneur features in the womenswear brand’s latest fragrance campaign, which will be launched in February.

This is the first time Cavalli has partnered with an ambassador from the Middle East.

Wazen shared the campaign image with her 7.1 million Instagram followers this week.

In the campaign, which was shot in Paris earlier this year, Wazen can be seen wearing the brand’s signature animal print.

“Ah! News is out! And I need someone to pinch me please,” wrote an incredulous Wazen, who was quickly inundated with overwhelmingly positive comments on the social media platform. “I’m the new face of Roberto Cavalli fragrances globally. This is such a dream for an Arab girl from Lebanon to be the global spokesperson for such an iconic brand… thank you to the most amazing team for this opportunity and for an unforgettable experience. Thank you @faustopuglisi for believing in me and making me a part of this journey,” she added, referring to the label’s creative director, Sicilian designer Fausto Puglisi.

 “We are extremely excited to welcome Karen to the Cavalli family. Her liberated spirit and glamorous style embodies the iconic Cavalli universe. We are proud to kickstart our collaboration together with a campaign that celebrates the core Cavalli fragrance pillars, which are the epitome of femininity and bring together a melody of notes inspired by our Italian heritage,” Puglisi said, according to WWD magazine.

The Dubai-based fashionista is one of the most influential figures in the region.

In addition to boasting of a combined following of more than 12 million across her social media platforms, the mother-of-three is also an eyewear designer and has an eponymous sunglasses brand, which she launched in 2018.

Last year, she launched her very first mobile game app, available on iOS and Android, titled “Karen Wazen: My World.”

She has also starred in plenty of regional advertorials for prestigious brands, including Prada, Ralph Lauren, Louis Vuitton and Cartier, to name a few.

In 2020, the social media influencer was also named a High Profile Supporter of UNHCR.