Aram Kabbani: She’s got the style!

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Updated 20 May 2015

Aram Kabbani: She’s got the style!

Saudi fashion designer and style expert Aram Kabbani graduated from Dar Al-Hekma University in Jeddah with a bachelor degree in Graphic Design (Honors). Her talent was discovered at an early age by those around her.
As a young girl, Kabbani could differentiate good style from bad and her taste in fashion dazzled those around her, making them trust and rely upon her for styling them.
Buoyed by the encouragement, she took up courses in Europe and the United States where she was trained by world-class professionals.
In a chat with Arab News, Kabbani opens up about her style secrets and how she views the fashion sense of Saudi women:

When did you discover your talent?
My family and friends discovered my talent. Ever since I was a young girl, I closely observed my relatives and friends, and also helped them in choosing their clothes, shoes, bags, accessories and even hair and make-up. I believe elegance always stems from the simplest of things.

You are a certified stylist. Tell us about your academic background.
I took styling courses at Saint Martin School of Art in London. I have been trained under high-end, celebrity stylists in London and the US.

The profile of a fashion stylist is relatively unknown in the Arab world. Why did you opt for it?
I did not select it deliberately, but my instincts led me to it. I loved this profession and although it is not famous in the Arab world, it did already exist but was not highlighted. As long as there are designers and celebrities, there have to be people behind the scenes doing a great, innovative job.

What are the key steps you follow with your clients?
It depends on whether I know the client or not. If I am familiar with her taste, her social status and the occasion, it is easier to meet the request. But in case I do not know her, I need to meet her several times to get to know her status, personality and taste.

On what do you base your advice to the client?
It is very important to recognize the character of the client and her social status that must be represented and reflected through her outer appearance, in addition to identifying her ambitions and the level of her culture and any other information to enable me to have a clear idea about her taste and needs.

What are the most famous Arab fashion houses whose collections you are keen to follow?
Of course, Elie Saab, Mohammed Ashi, Georges Hobeika and others.

Who are your favorite international fashion designers?
Alaïa, Alexander McQueen, Lanvin and Antonio Berardi.

How do you evaluate the appearance of Arab, and Saudi women, in particular?
The Arab woman is characterized by elegance, she loves beauty and is highly attractive and feminine. This is what distinguishes her from the Western woman.
The Saudi woman, specifically, is well-educated and successful and dedicates a lot of time to follow fashion and everything related to beauty.
There are studies that have shown that Saudi women are the most interested in fashion and beauty among Arab women.

An advice you would give to Saudi women?
I would advise the Saudi woman to stay away from imitation and to celebrate her personality and individuality instead, as well as to keep up with fashion according to what suits her, and to trust herself and her beauty and show it in a way that serves her best. Lastly, I would like to remind her that beauty means simplicity.

What is the biggest misconception people not working in your field have about your job?
People think a stylist is a designer. Usually designers start their careers as stylists. But stylists are not designers, not even close. They do help designers by updating them with the latest trend reports, color of each season and also help style their fashion shows or photoshoots.
Another misconception is that people think stylists only put together a look or shop for individuals but that’s not true, stylists are there to help in the marketing and PR of a fashion company and to help designers in fashion shows or photoshoots.

What is the best style advice you have received?
Be confident. If you wear something, you should feel confident in your own skin. Confidence or the lack of it always shows in your posture and body language. Another piece of advice is to wear whatever you feel happy in and make sure it suits your body and age.

What do you like best about your job?
I love everything, I enjoy every second of it. This job is my oxygen, I love working in fashion and with designers, whether they are big brands or upcoming designers. Hunting for new trends is another passion of mine. Over all, I am a very lucky woman to be working in a field that I love and adore.

What are the qualities and skills one needs to succeed in your profession?
One must have a good eye for style and trends, in addition to a strong educational background and skills on how to execute a fashion plan. Of course, you will also need the experience and training to perfect the quality of work.

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Hawaii thieves cart off $1,000 worth of durian

Updated 17 February 2020

Hawaii thieves cart off $1,000 worth of durian

  • Durian is known for a pale yellow flesh with a sweet taste but a smell described as worse
  • Popular across Southeast Asia but commonly banned from hotel rooms and public transportation there

HONOLULU: Police in Hawaii are investigating the theft of fruit valued at about $1,000 including durian, which is known for its powerful odor.
Two men entered a property in Hilo on the Big Island and removed 18 durian and other types of fruit on the night of Feb. 1, the Hawaii Police Department said.
Authorities released a surveillance camera image of two suspects and asked the public for additional information that could lead to the capture of the fruit bandits.

Authorities released a surveillance image of two suspects involved in a fruit theft in Hilo. (Hawaii Police Department)


The tropical, spiky durian fruit resembles a small porcupine and typically weighs from 2 to 7 pounds (1 to 3 kilograms).
Durian is known for a pale yellow flesh with a sweet taste but a smell that has been compared to moldy cheese, rotten onions, dead fish and far worse.
Durian is popular across Southeast Asia but also is commonly banned from hotel rooms and public transportation there.
The smell of rotting durian in a cupboard was mistaken for a gas leak and prompted an evacuation of a library at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology in Australia in April 2018.