French Algerian singer Lolo Zouai poses for Kenzo

French Algerian singer Lolo Zouai is making a name for herself as a musician and fashion It-girl. (File/ AFP)
French Algerian singer Lolo Zouai is making a name for herself as a musician and fashion It-girl. (File/ AFP)
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Updated 12 June 2022

French Algerian singer Lolo Zouai poses for Kenzo

French Algerian singer Lolo Zouai is making a name for herself as a musician and fashion It-girl. (File/ AFP)

DUBAI: French Algerian singer Lolo Zouai has been unveiled as one of the stars of French fashion house Kenzo’s Fall-Winter 2022 campaign.

The flower-filled collection is the brainchild of Kenzo’s artistic director Nigo, a Japanese fashion designer and founder of streetwear label A Bathing Ape whose real name is Tomoaki Nagao.

Kenzo shone a spotlight on Zouai on Instagram this week, sharing a snap of the 27-year-old musician in a gilet adorned with oversized blue poppies.

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by KENZO (@kenzo)

“@LoloZouaï, the French-born American R&B and pop musician, blooming in the Fall-Winter 2022 collection KENZO poppy Gilet by @Nigo,” the post was captioned.

Despite Kenzo’s omission of her Algerian roots, the singer is not one to shy away from her heritage.

In fact, in 2020 she released a music video for her song “Desert Rose” that was an on-screen celebration of her North African lineage.

Filmed in an unnamed village situated in Morocco’s Essaouira, the Emilie Badenhorst-directed clip captured the star’s feelings of displacement and desperate longing to reconnect with her father’s side of the family’s culture and traditions.

“This is a story I’ve needed to tell my whole life,” she previously shared with Arab News. “I’m so grateful that I was able to travel to North Africa and work with an amazing director and crew to create this video exactly as I saw it in my mind.”

Zouai, who was born Laureen Zouai to a French mother and an Algerian father in Paris, has had a stellar 2022 so far, releasing her latest single “Give Me a Kiss” in April and joining pop superstar Dua Lipa on her “Future Nostalgia” tour as the opening act.

It appears that the fashion world is starting to take note of the singer too.

The “High Highs to Low, Lows” hitmaker is a Coach favorite and has appeared in several of the American brand’s campaigns.

She also has advertorials for Tommy Jeans under her belt and previously teamed up with sportswear giant Adidas alongside other notable figures hailing from France, including Manchester United footballer Paul Pogba and rappers Vald and Dinos, for the brand’s “Change is a Team Sport” campaign.

Meanwhile, when she’s not sitting front row at luxury fashion shows or posing for advertorials, she can be found performing at some of the hottest tickets during Fashion Month.

In the past she has performed at New York Fashion Week for Saint Laurent as well as at KidSuper’s surreal Spring 2021 show.


Celebrity-loved Roksanda Ilincic talks dressing Rajwa Al-Saif and design inspiration

Celebrity-loved Roksanda Ilincic talks dressing Rajwa Al-Saif and design inspiration
Updated 28 March 2023

Celebrity-loved Roksanda Ilincic talks dressing Rajwa Al-Saif and design inspiration

Celebrity-loved Roksanda Ilincic talks dressing Rajwa Al-Saif and design inspiration
  • Roksanda Ilincic’s designs have been worn by the likes of Kate Middleton, Anne Hathaway and Michelle Obama
  • Crown Prince Hussein of Jordan’s Saudi fiancee Rajwa Al-Saif wore a Roksanda creation to Princess Iman’s recent wedding in Amman

DUBAI: London-based designer Roksanda Ilincic has quite the clientele. From British royalty like the princess of Wales to Hollywood A-listers Anne Hathaway and Blake Lively, her technicolored dresses are a go-to for many celebrities. 

Closer to home, the Saudi national and the fiancee of Crown Prince Hussein of Jordan, Rajwa Al-Saif, was in the news for the elegant bright yellow cape dress by Ilincic that she wore to Princess Iman of Jordan’s recent wedding.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Roksanda (@roksandailincic)

Arab News caught up with the designer to learn more.

Al-Saif wearing her Neolitsea dress to the royal wedding came as a big surprise to the designer. “It was an absolute joy and such a privilege to see! I love the dress for its cape and the drama happening at the back,” said Ilincic.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Roksanda (@roksandailincic)

Royalty aside, the designer is also very popular with the regional style set in the Middle East. Last year, she spoke at Riyadh’s Fashion Futures and visited Kuwait for a lunch hosted by Harvey Nichols. “Riyadh was a wonderful experience — I love meeting my customers in person and discovering new ways of wearing my designs. Arab women are very educated in fashion — they know what luxury fabrics are and are open to experimenting,” said Ilincic. 

In addition, she believes women in the region love and understand her aesthetic, featuring bright colors and unusual shapes.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Roksanda (@roksandailincic)

The Serbian-born designer studied architecture and applied arts at the University of Belgrade before moving to London for further studies. Ilincic graduated with her master’s degree in womenswear from Central Saint Martins in 1999, where she trained under the late professor Louise Wilson OBE. “When I interviewed at the institute, Louise Wilson asked me, ‘what do you want to do with your life once you graduate?’ So I said I want to start my own label, and I remember she was laughing at the time and thinking, ‘wow, those are very ambitious plans,’” she recalled.

For Ilincic, expressing herself and communicating through clothing was always an inner calling, and in 2005, she presented her first collection at London Fashion Week. Then, in 2014, she took the plunge and opened her flagship store on London’s Mount Street, designed by legendary architect Sir David Adjaye. 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Roksanda (@roksandailincic)

Ilincic’s designs have become a celebrity staple through her eclectic color combinations and architectural silhouettes. Her inclination towards bold colors stems from her home country and is also reminiscent of the past works of the remarkable Christian Lacroix, who she considers an icon. 

“He’s definitely an inspiration, and so is home where there’s lots of sun, and everything surrounding me was in color. Even a trip to the food market would result in incredible color combinations,” she explained.

Her love for fluid architecture, too, lends itself to her designs. For example, she tries to avoid corsets as much as possible — for ease of movement and comfort for the wearer. “I use corsets when necessary, but I experiment to find alternatives. Sometimes I’ll use grosgrain ribbons or dresses with support on side seams. That element of comfort is really important and something that I never take for granted,” she said.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Roksanda (@roksandailincic)

Elsewhere, it is art that often inspires her. Case in point: Her Fall/Winter 2023 collection that referenced the works of Japanese artist Atsuko Tanaka. The grandiose closing gowns consisted of dresses reminiscent of Tanaka’s “Electric Dress” — a creation made from colorful lights and electrical cords. “I took elements of the electric tubes from her art piece, and transformed them into soft, curvilinear tubes and draped them like curves around the body,” Ilincic noted. Despite their sculptural appeal, she believes they are dresses that women can still wear on the red carpet or on stage while performing.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Roksanda (@roksandailincic)

So how does a bonafide dressmaker dressing royalty end up collaborating with athletic wear brands like Lululemon and Fila? “I wanted to challenge myself — what I do is so radically different from what was becoming a norm — leggings worn as trousers or puffer jackets alongside red carpet skirts. I was lucky enough to partner with Lululemon and Fila to create sporty, couture-like pieces, and both collaborations have proved to be very successful,” she explained.

Last December, Michelle Obama wore a Roksanda X Fila jacket on her book tour. Couture-esque pieces or glamorous sportswear – it is clear Ilincic has mastered both — and that explains her ever-expanding celebrity fanbase.


Winnie Harlow’s Arab street style turns heads in Los Angeles

Winnie Harlow’s Arab street style turns heads in Los Angeles
Updated 28 March 2023

Winnie Harlow’s Arab street style turns heads in Los Angeles

Winnie Harlow’s Arab street style turns heads in Los Angeles

DUBAI: Canadian model Winnie Harlow was spotted championing Lebanese designer Nicolas Jebran on the streets of Los Angeles. 

She donned a long textured green trench coat from the designer’s Fall/Winter 2023 collection that she wore over a brown turtleneck bodysuit.  

Harlow finished off her look with brown leather boots that extended up to her knees, a khaki structured purse and cat eye sunglasses that she tucked into the coat’s belt at her waist.  

The model wore the outfit for an eventful day. She attended a talk in Los Angeles where she spoke to business founders about her experience creating her beauty brand Cay Skin, she wrote in her Instagram caption as she shared pictures of her look.  

Harlow, who has over 10 million followers on Instagram, then went to celebrate one of her friend’s birthdays. “Long day, Work and Play. Speaking to new business founders about my experience my first year creating @cayskin then straight to the celebrations @mannyuk," she shared with her fans. 

The catwalk star is a regular visitor in the Middle East.  

She recently attended Saudi Arabia’s Formula E Diriyah E-Prix. 

“The experience at Formula E is unmatched and I’ve really enjoyed the vibe, people, atmosphere, and racing. I’ve been to Saudi Arabia a few times and always have a great experience, so I love that Formula E is in Diriyah,” Harlow said in a released statement in January. 

“Living in a more sustainable world and being able to enjoy motorsports at the same time is incredible,” she added.  

In November, she was spotted in Abu Dhabi. She attended the UAE’s Formula 1 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix and posed for pictures in front of the Louvre Abu Dhabi.  

To watch the race, Harlow wore a black sports jersey with green Swarovski crystals and black leggings with larger colorful crystals. She accessorized her look with a green bag and glasses.   

For her shoot, she wore a black form-fitting velvet dress with a matching turban by Omani label Atelier Zuhra, which was founded by designer Mouza Al-Awfi in 2015.   

She completed the look by layering chunky gold jewelry on her neck and wrists.  


Review: Netflix's ‘Soy Georgina’ season two highlights moments in Dubai amid tepid reality footage

Review: Netflix's ‘Soy Georgina’ season two highlights moments in Dubai amid tepid reality footage
Updated 28 March 2023

Review: Netflix's ‘Soy Georgina’ season two highlights moments in Dubai amid tepid reality footage

Review: Netflix's ‘Soy Georgina’ season two highlights moments in Dubai amid tepid reality footage

CHENNAI: The second season of Netflix’s much-hyped “I Am Georgina” debuted on the streaming platform over the weekend; and while it does have its fair share of magical and poignant moments, its biggest drawback may be the fact that it was directed by Georgina Rodriguez herself, with a little help from Spanish director Victor Rins. 

The long-time partner of Portuguese football star Cristiano Ronaldo and mother to their several children, Rodriguez is her own celebrity these days – helped by a vast social media following and her influencer status.  

The six-episode, sophomore season – filled with potential – took the monotonous and predictable route, however, following Rodriguez as she travels to movie festivals like Venice and Cannes and other cities, such as Manchester and so on.  

The series, also predictably, shows very little of the legendary sportsman Ronaldo, which could have made the work far more interesting for a certain section of viewers.  

However, episode one does feature Ronaldo and is set almost entirely in Dubai – following an emotional and touching moment as he surprised Rodriguez by lighting up the iconic Burj Khalifa with a special message on her 28th birthday.  

“It was a very emotional day. Well, it was and it still is, because in the end, those moments and those positive experiences stay with you,” she said in the show. “And day after day, it’s like a thrill, like a spark that keeps you happy and active and alive.” 

The show also touches on a more poignant and darker moment in her life – losing one of her twin babies, son Angel. It is heart-breaking to see her pine for the child, but Rodriguez says she pulls herself together thanks to her other children and Ronaldo. And we soon see her jetting off again in her private plane as she spends time with her close friends.  

Even a bit about the fact that she was the daughter of a cocaine kingpin growing up in Argentina is so carefully crafted that it feels whitewashed and drained of any significance.  

What else does the series offer? Rodriguez talks about how she was a ballet dancer, but could not pursue her dream, and this is shown more in the passing. The appearance of Spanish singer-songwriter Rosalia is also interesting, but nothing beats Ronaldo’s romantic birthday gesture at the Burj. More of this in season three, please. 


Ariana Grande shows off Andrea Wazen heels  

Ariana Grande shows off Andrea Wazen heels  
Updated 28 March 2023

Ariana Grande shows off Andrea Wazen heels  

Ariana Grande shows off Andrea Wazen heels  

DUBAI: US singer, songwriter and actress Ariana Grande is the latest star to be added to Lebanese footwear designer Andrea Wazen’s client list.  

Grande, founder of cosmetics label R.E.M Beauty, stepped out this week wearing the designer’s Double Jeu platforms in white while shooting for her upcoming film adaption of “Wicked.” 

The actress shared behind-the-scenes pictures from the set of herself with her cast-mate Cynthia Erivo.  

Grande, who had her platinum blonde hair tied up in a ponytail, wore a pink polka dot dress with white elbow-high gloves.  

“Wicked” is set for release on Nov. 27, 2024, Grande shared on Instagram last week. Palestinian Dutch model Gigi Hadid commented on her post saying: “I am having heart palpitations.”  

Wazen’s Double Jeu platforms were recently worn by US superstar Jennifer Lopez during an appearance on the “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” show in January. 


Arab stars shine in Maybelline Ramadan campaign

Arab stars shine in Maybelline Ramadan campaign
Updated 28 March 2023

Arab stars shine in Maybelline Ramadan campaign

Arab stars shine in Maybelline Ramadan campaign

DUBAI: US cosmetics brand Maybelline starred Chilean Palestinian singer Elyanna, Egyptian actress Amira Adeeb and Kuwaiti content creator Khattafya in its latest campaign for Ramadan.  

The three stars promoted the brand’s Lash Sensation Sky High mascara, the Fit Me Vitamin C tint and the Superstay lipstick.  

“Happy to have been a part of @maybelline New York’s global campaign this year,” Adeeb wrote to her 903,000 followers on Instagram, sharing the colorful video on her page. “Jumpstart this Ramadan with an empowered, authentic YOU.”  

Elyanna sang the campaign’s jingle “Yalla Ya Habibi.”  

“Happy to have shared this with you, love,” Adeeb wrote to Elyanna on Instagram.  

The campaign was shot in Thailand, Adeeb revealed in her caption.