Tag Archives: pakistani menswear

REPUBLIC by Omar Farooq at the Woolmark

As one sits and ponders over the state of menswear, one can’t help but sigh. It’s not hopeless, it’s just that there’s so much cacophony, everything gets confused and in this confusion it all gets lost. As I said earlier, it’s very important to know where one stands and what he wants for himself, even in fashion. Brands and labels, when start off, get lost along the journey. A very important part of it is staying true to their roots and ideals. One of such labels in Pakistan who stuck to it’s signature and ideas from the start has been REPUBLIC by Omar Farooq. Omar’s attention to the details of his pieces, and the thought he puts into them sets him apart. When one is in need of a true Italian suit, REPUBLIC is there at the front, and you cannot ask for much more precision and perfection, considering this is Pakistan. It was because of these (and obviously other great) reasons that REPUBLIC was nominated for the Woolmark Prize. Now this is a big deal, for a Pakistani designer to be nominated for one of the most prestigious fashion awards in the world. YSL and Karl Lagerfeld were of the first few winners when this award was launched. You see, this award recognizes only the best in the game, those working with wool hands on, and being innovative with whatever work they produce. Fullscreen capture 7262014 60838 PM.bmp It was a pleasure to see Republic’s name on the same page as Public School NY, and Agi and Sam. This nomination is a testament to the fact that REPUBLIC has earned a name for itself not only nationally and internationally as well! His label is the “it” label for high quality menswear, and if you are in the mood to splurge on good clothing, REPUBLIC is the option.   Fullscreen capture 7262014 60914 PM.bmpWhen I reached out to Omar to tell me about his experience with Woolmark, he said it was one of those experiences where one can only learn more and more and grow. He said that being in Pakistan, one doesn’t get to know how to reach out to the clientele besides the one in Pakistan, and having experienced the Woolmark nomination, he saw that we need to expand our horizons and delve into the deep waters of fashion. A person needs top be challenged, and Woolmark was just the experience to teach one that, says Omar. Fullscreen capture 7262014 60845 PM.bmp Apart from that, Omar had to say that get your paperwork done in time. It will make things hectic once it comes a time to show at the regionals. It won’t even leave you time to go out sightseeing comfortably. While REPUBLIC unfortunately didn’t get to go on to compete at the world wide stage of the Woolmark, being a part of the Woolmark experience, and getting to be nominated among so many high profile international labels, is just an amazing thing for Pakistani fashion. Fullscreen capture 7262014 60956 PM.bmp We should be proud that Pakistan creates such amazing designers who have the potential to go to the international level and make a name for us. It is up to us to provide our designers the ability to expand and evolve in their creative pursuits so that we keep getting innovative collections over the years. What I have learned and observed from this experience is that Playing safe just won’t cut it anymore if Pakistani fashion wants to expand globally, or even nationally. We can’t stay at a static point in our fashion approaches and diss every other person who tries to break the norm. We need to encourage differential approaches and methods to fashion in Pakistan, and let the boundaries grow. Step out of our comfort zones. Here’s hoping REPUBLIC goes places around the globe and makes a name for not only itself, but also the Pakistani fashion industry. Wishing Omar all the best, with lots of love! Fullscreen capture 7262014 60855 PM.bmpImages Courtesy: Republic’s Instagram here

 

This Eid, Do Simple, Go plain – MY PICKS

I have always felt more inclined towards more simple eastern wear. Sure, sherwani’s look great with bling and what not, but when it comes to everyday attire, or even special occasions like weddings or Eid, I have opted for subtle show, or maybe even a plain and simple kurta/qameez.

Lucky for me that this year, a lot of the mainstream brands have opted for simpler eastern wear for their Eid collections. With various colors, ranging from orange to sea green, there’s a lot to going on that can perk up your wardrobe!

Bonanza: PC Aamna Isani
Bonanza: PC Aamna Isani

Here’s a list of my picks for where to shop at for Eid this year.

  • Gul Ahmed
  • Bonanza
  • KHAADI

Designers

  • REPUBLIC (made to order)
  • Sania Maskatiya
  • Amir Adnan
  • HSY
  • Emran Rajput

Have a fashionable Eid guys!

The Lost Case of Androgyny – Arsalan Iqbal at PSFW

Lets be honest, there never really was any, androgyny out in the Pakistani fashion scene.  Sure, there’s a picture of Fia Sofia and Rubia Butt trying to look like a man. But that won’t make the cut for androgyny.  With androgyny, we mean Tilda Swinton, and David Bowie, and that girl from Katy Perry’s lyric video of Unconditionally where the model looks like Leo DiCap. So you see, it’s a very tricky thing to handle, this androgyny, and when it comes to creating a collection that makes use of such elements, one is treading on thin ice. It’s delicate, and if you slip, you drown. Sure, using androgynous looking models can work, but lets be honest, where do we have that in Pakistan?

arsalan iqbal cargwar psfw pfdc

So it came as a genuine surprise that the menswear designer Arsalan Iqbal decided to walk on this ice, and that too while making his debut as a womenswear designer as well. He was at the same time, debuting at PFDC Sunsilk Fashion Week, so it needed to be a collection that left its mark. And with the concept as such, his Cargwar collection dealt with androgyny and true to the meaning of Cargwar, utility. Utility was an essential part of the collection. And the theme of Odysseus and the concept of it was very artsy.

When I first saw the collection on the ramp, i was left confused and my initial reaction was a direction away from the collection. It took me some time to digest all the monotony of the collection. But this confusion lead me to think a lot about the collection. And as I went through the details of it, is when I understood how truly androgynous the collection really was. The lowers and the upper pieces, when dissected as separates, made it clear how well conceptualized the collection was. It was made for anyone, any girl, and any boy. It had the ability to be worn by both sexes, and it exuded a sort of mysteriousness one would associate with androgyny. White is the perfect colour for that and it was the dominant one in the collection.

Recently Updated3

The lowers, worn by guys and girls alike and all their various forms; jodhpurs, harem pants, shalwars etc are more in focus for me, as the way they were designed, it kind of resonates with the hipster approach I have towards fashion. It’s skinny, it’s loose, and it’s essentially unique. We rarely get such kinds of lowers in Pakistan for the guys, and even the girls, i assume!

Another factor that got me inclined a lot towards the collection was the use of metallic studs and the rivets. Nothing speaks Punk more than studs/spikes on clothes, and gives of a careless attitude, and along with that, adds a youthful sense to the clothes. It’s good to see designers focusing on the youthfulness of clothes. Yes, the business man has always known to pay to look good, but in this gadget infested youth of today, individuality and labels make a huge part of their lives, and the House of Arsalan Iqbal is catering to us with this collection. As for the older people, you can always go with the tops.

Recently Updated4

Another thing that the collection highlighted a lot of was the footwear. Man! It was breaking my heart, it was THAT good!

Recently Updated5

So you see, with a grown fashion industry I am sure that we will get more and more collections that can sell and stick to a theme. With collections as monotonous yet so diverse in characteristic as this, here’s hoping the Pakistani menswear industry grows beyond the staples!

Ramp Images Courtesy: Fasisal Farooqi and his team at Dragonfly

Taha Piracha and The Case of Approachable High Fashion

Recently, a twitter user complained about the inaccessibility of fashion blogs to common folks and regular people to connect with each other, who can actually wear stuff as regular people on the street. It is true that most of the fashion blogosphere is dominated by high fashion, and bloggers rarely highlight that part of fashion that goes into making everyday wear of a person, who is into fashion, but not high fashion. Such people exist everywhere, and when I go through the search engine terms of my blog, I realize how it is sort of our responsibility to make fashion accessible to everyone. So I have decided to review one such designer who is doing work for the masses and by the engagement level on his Facebook page, I am happy to see our people being into fashion. It sort of makes me realize how it is everyone’s desire to look naturally good, and how much internet access to the common man is making things change.

Taha Piracha is the designer in subject here. When going through his Facebook page here, I quickly realized that his design aesthetic appeals to the youth of today, with an inclination towards eastern wear with a modern twist. Their kurtas have a traditional chic appeal to them that end up being statement makers on their own. But then I stumbled on to their Shirts collection and I realized how such a small tumble through the Facebook pages lead me to discovering a brand that had all that I was looking for. I instantly fell in love with the floral patterned shirt, and that is what I got. Although that was not all that I liked. I really like a paisley patterned maroon shirt on the album. The shirts, made it evident that Taha Piracha had a signature aesthetic that translated from his Kurtas to his Shirts. He had his specialty embroidered shirts, but also had the regular stripes and gingham patterned shirts to make it for every other man.

When I got my shirt from Taha Piracha, I was excited. Usually, when you order clothes online, you kind of end up being disappointed that the colors don’t match, or something is off, But i experienced nothing like this. I was happy with the end product and what really made it great was that the finish of the product was fine. It was nicely stitched and the size fit perfectly. While I could’ve got it custom made to my size, I, unfortunately, due to my hectic lifestyle, could get the regular sizes they had to offer. Yet it fit perfectly. I was lucky enough to have it in time to wear it to the X-Men Days of Future past premiere in Islamabad. Here I am wearing the shirt with Tariq Amin at the premiere (excuse the blurry photo as my little brother took it).

InstagramCapture_3a133bbb-9b65-4abd-b5ca-205d338c8ac8_jpgWP_20140523_015

Taha Piracha clothing has prices and styles that make it a brand that knows it’s target market. And the target market is anyone wanting to make a unique statement. While some may argue that fashion blogs are for people with interest in fashion and not for common people, but when it comes to buying clothes, it is everyone’s concern to have the best, and have it under budget. Taha Piracha has kept in mind both these things. Similarly, when the buyer is exploring his/her options, the blogs will ultimately be stumbled upon and the high fashion, and street fashion will inter mix with each other.

Another thing that made me incline towards Taha Piracha is his being vocal against bullying on his Facebook page. He recently made a post on the Pink Shirt Day which is basically an anti-bullying day celebrated across the world. Everyone knows I am very vocal about my experience with bullying and how I am helping spread the word against it.

10370882_746064682124243_478100256280880126_n

It is really important to realize that the fashion comes to a point in everyone’s life where almost every earning man thinks before having access to it. To get the thing worth your money is what matters. And in the end, a happy customer means a good business.

you can check out Taha Piracha Clothing on the facebook page here

REPUBLIC’s S/S’14 Collection at PFDC Sunsilk Fashion Week Dissected

So here we are. After a long long time that Republic by Omer Farooq showed his collection at PSFW. Although i wish he had done it last year, since i actually went back then, but anyway, I’m glad he did. His work has always been one of the best of menswear and he makes his pieces for the modern metropolitan man who is not afraid to step things up.

So here we go dissecting the PSFW collection that REPUBLIC by Omer Farooq showed this year.

9US_rZ

THE PASTEL TOUCH

I love how Omer knows what the modern man needs. His incorporation of pastels is a testament to the fact that the REPUBLIC man is not afraid to amp things up in his wardrobe and add a little subtle pink to his wardrobe that’s easy on the eyes and doesn’t make one flinch. The pastels had a heavy influence on the collectionand they were just the right amount of color one needs.

Recently Updated32

50 SHADES OF BLUE

Blue is one color every man should have in his wardrobe. Denim is so obvious, but it’s better to step out of that old black suit and try a little bit of color, and blue is just the right one for that. It’ll not make you look stupid (if you’re not a fashion lover, that is) and it’ll be the perfect look to make you stand out from the rest at the event you are attending.

Recently Updated28

THE WINDOWPANE

A pattern to be confused with plaid, this pattern was seen in the REPUBLIC collection. The fact that it’s so obviously the year of the plaid, it was a good way to go the plaid way, while not being hundred percent plaid.

Recently Updated30

STRIPES PINNED and PLAID-ed

Can I just say how hard it is to make a striped suit look good? And what a great job Omer did with the striped pieces he showed? The red stripes were my favorite one.  The pin striped suits were just beautiful. And I liked them the most. I have had a crush on the pinstripe suit for a long time, and it was fun to see it on the Paki runways. And then there’s the customary plaid (Muhammad is seen donning). How can we do without that?

Recently Updated34

THE ACCESSORY TALK

So the botanical prints were a huge hit. Everyone loved them. It’s not something you see in your normal Paki wardrobe. Honestly, it was an innovative step towards Pakistani menswear. The shoes were lust worthy and the bags and the scarves were just so cool. Vacations just got trendier!

Recently Updated36

 

Other Trends Worth Noting

  • The Double Breasted Suit
  • The Man Bag
  • Wide Lapels (as opposed to narrow).
  • Trench Coats (or the summer coat)

 Images Courtesy: Faisal Farooqui and his team at Dragonfly.

Go Ceremonial with REPUBLIC’s Ceremonial Collection

Indigo Blue. Yes, that’s the whole collection’s color. if you know well enough, you would know that Blue is the color of this year. It was almost everywhere in the menswear shows all over.

1509066_718138981543954_174623098_n

Why I love the collection is majorly because of the blue color, but besides that, you don’t get to see clothes like these in Pakistan normally. REPUBLIC brought the modern cut for the modern man to Pakistan and made it available for the masses (yes, well, some of the mass). the tailors here are very thick skulled to understand the needs of the meterosexual man and live like it’s still the 90’s. With REPUBLIC, you should know you are on top of the trends.

With it being the wedding season and all, REPUBLIC should be the go-to designer for your groomswear. It’s cool, hip and trendy; something the grooms of our generation are trying to opt for (i think). Now I know nothing about the cuts of lapels and stuff )and I know I should!) but seriously, I have never seen something as cool as this in any store in Pakistan here.  The tuxes are just “gorgeous” (can we call menswear that? yes!)

And it’s not that expensive too (20,000 and + ) so why not go for this?

1467354_710971522260700_2040728508_n 1466222_710961862261666_1922548122_n 1488918_710956042262248_1822221195_n 536853_710962238928295_116945368_n 1458456_710963588928160_1089862325_n 1469757_710971312260721_1322003660_n 1450974_710971712260681_1773633135_n

For more updates, like REPUBLIC on their facebook page here.

Pictures courtesy: REPUBLIC’s facebook page.

Menswear at Fashion Pakistan Week S/S’14

With only a single menswear designer sending his work down the ramp, even he could not stay away from showing ONE womenswear piece. The rest of the designers, as always, did dip their toes into the menswear pool and a few of those pieces were extremely out of the box and drool worthy.

Fullscreen capture 23-Feb-14 71243 PM.bmp

So let’s talk about the collections now, shall we?

Levi’s:-

I love Levi’s . I always have and my wardrobe is full of levi’s clothing. It’s the “it” brand to go to for a look unique and subtle enough to stand out. And stand out the whole show did, but for all the wrong reasons. The styling is what got the show down. If anyone is aware of the what the brand is associated with, they would know that the way the levi’s handles their looks, the blinged up version is definitely not one of them.

The way a collection is styled for the ramp speaks volumes about the credibility of the clothes. Levi’s is simple, young and very understated. Even the rich Beverly Hills surfer brats don’t carry the look the way the models on the ramp did. But hey, we have to “desify” everything. If the show was anything, it was an ode to the pindi boyz look. Skaters and surfers DO NOT dress like this!

Individually, I loved everything, and would buy it off the rack anytime, but if presented like this, never.

Levi’s I love you, but please, keep true to who you are, even if you are in Pakistan.

On a lighter note, I loved the collection. Specially the jacket Adnan Malik wore. It was something the younger people can look forward to the fashion weeks as we rarely get clothes oriented towards young people, and the ones young at heart. Here’s hoping the lookbook is at least better.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Nauman Arfeen:-

So the sole menswear designer to show this season, his collection “Haute After Dark” did not disappoint. With hues of copper brown, bronze, black and dark blue, the collection was cohesive and eye candy. With almost all the basic menswear options covered; the sherwani, long coats, suits and the trendy quilted pieces, the collection was a menswear delight. My personal favorite was the ensemble that Abbas Jaffrey was donning. The embroidered pieces were great and even the prints used in a few of the pieces were very D&G. Regardless of the D&G feel of the collection, it was definitely proving that menswear in Pakistan is something to be looking forward to. It was a dapper collection, with all the pieces worth crushing over. Designers like Nauman are going to keep the menswear side of Pakistani fashion alive and young.

I just hope that this year’s menswear fashion week here has more of such designers. We desperately need such aesthetic sense of menswear designers.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Adnan Perdesy:-

The only four menswear jackets he showed were too much bling to handle for a common Pakistani man, but apart from the golden sherwani, I loved the others. The silver waistcoat was genius and it looked comfortably wearable to me! Definitely worth wearing to a mehndi.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Zainab Chottani:-

So Zainab sent down a couple of menswear pieces, shirts. Not anything new or worth noting.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

HSY:-

Showing a select few menswear options in his Venom collection, HSY shows us that he is the best at going the unconventional way. The jumpsuit was the best piece i saw throughout the whole three days of FPW, and I’m crushing on it so bad. I specifically liked the use of embroidery on the snakeskin pattern. It was, in my opinion, very cool. I loved all of it. Simple.

While the collection is not going to be seen worn on the streets, chances are that the fashion loving men who want an edge to their wardrobe might go for the jackets HSY showed. They were exceptionally fashionable. HSY knows menswear like no other designer in Pakistan. He’s different and quirky, yet managing to make his pieces look sartorially acceptable. Scratch that; sartorially loveable!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Fahad Hussayn:-

A jumpsuit, a jacket and a sherwani. These three pieces were the menswear pieces Fahad showed and man, they left me wanting more. I am a sucker for jumpsuits, and i’m loving how this trend is coming to Pakistani menswear. The embroidered suit jacket was perfect for red carpet event and the sherwani was just beautiful. gorgeous. I WANT MORE FAHAD HUSSAYN MENSWEAR.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Jaffer Jees ft Wardah Saleem Prints:-

I just can’t, I just can’t *teen girl snobby accent*. I love it! Just three prints and I believe Wardah should get into menswear ASAP. Bus, I want the one Abbas Jaffrey was wearing.

As for the bags, So chic and minimalist. But the trends are changing, and printed bags and hand painted bags are in. Can Pakistan keep up with the trends please?

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Ali Xeeshan:-

If i’ll be having an Eat Pray Love moment, I’ll only turn to these clothes then, to add the movie-ish effect. Although I loved how the white jumpsuit was styled. So Mughal chic!

I am doubtful if using men as accessories on the ramp even qualifies to make it to be a menswear designer, but who am I to judge!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Tapu Javeri ft. HSY:-

The prints were roaring good. I use term roar because the tiger printed pants were just beyond cool. While the black and white collection with amazingly futuristic and artful prints might not make a big splash in the common folk, they were something that Pakistani menswear was in dire need of. The part of the collection designed by HSY was worthy of being taken to international shows, and i hope it does go around because all the pieces were terribly drool worthy!

I’m screaming out here, it’s THAT good!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Faraz Manan:-

His collection featured three menswear pieces. I liked the splintered pattern of rainbow colors on the shirts. Maybe more menswear in the future? Because the suit jacket Abbas Jaffrey was wearing was too good and left me wanting more.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Nomi Ansari:-

The grand finale featured some meanswear pieces that was too much bling to handle. But I was happy to see the use of studs. The pieces would look good as separates though!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

With so few options for menswear, the future of menswear seems bleak. I don’t know what the future holds but the way things are going, i’m not that hopeful.

But the thing that sparks interest is that these “womenswear” designers are designing such good, but little, menswear pieces that if they foray into menswear, it might be good not only for them, but for us too.

Best of Pakistani Menswear in 2013

1006336_759357024080203_2000172574_n

2013 was a good year for menswear in Pakistan, or was it? Well, for starters, we got our very own Pakistan Menswear Fashion Week (reviewed here), but it was a disaster. Then, we had quite a few designers shows at various fashion weeks. While we have only a handful of sole menswear designers, we still have some designers who dip their toes in the wild waters that is menswear and some actually stay afloat. And here we have the few (of the few) best moments of menswear in Pakistan.

Best Collection: Ahmed Bham at TDAP

Already mentioned in the LookiLike Series of mine, I loved Ahmed Bham’s extremely dapper collection from the trade show. This has to be the best menswear collection on the runway for the year!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Best designer: Omar Farooq

This guy knows his suit, and ours too! His clothes for the at APTMA trade show show how much he knows of almost everything. Plus, have you checked out his store? It’s how a menswear store should be. Omar Farooq is THE designer to go to for all the young guns. Sure, we have Ahmed Bham, but Omar Farooq is no less! Check out his Ceremonial collection here. Also, did you know? He dressed the CM Punjab! How cool!

486677_718128998211619_2027739646_n

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Best fashion shoot: Republic By Omar Farooq A/W’12-13 shoot and Emraan Rajput’s Denimology for DIVA Magazine

This was the hardest one to choose as their aren’t many shoots of menswear going around or making it to either print, or billboards. So here are my top two shoots of the year.

REPUBLIC’s :This shoot was fun, nostalgic, and featured almost all the top models. Here are a few of my fav shots from the shoot. Also, it featured photography by Abdullah Haris, who’s my fav since like ever!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

DIVA Magazine is, in my opinion, the most versatile magazine. They feature menswear too. And give proper space to it. One such shoot was Emraan Rajput’s Denimology collection. The collection was itself a unique take on denim, but to be executed in a shoot that depicts the denim-ness of the collection, that was cool.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Best model: Tabish oza

Let’s give a shout out to all the newbies coming into the industry here. Tabish is is one of those guys who’s got the looks and the attitude for a shoot. He landed a few coveted brand shoots this year and if it’s anything, 2014 will be his year (hopefully an LSA nominee too in emerging talent?). He can walk AND is photogenic.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Best dressed: Waleed Zaman

When I met him at PSFW, I had no idea who he was, until he showed his Kayseria Collection. Still, all those four days, his look was the best and most out standing one among the people at PSFW. Then we saw him at red carpets all across looking fun and uber cool. He might not be your typical stylish gentleman, but he’s stylish in his own ways and stands out for all the perfect reasons.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Breakout Designers: DnF (Deepak and Fahad) and Arsalan Iqbal

Coming into the limelight not that long ago (2012) Deepak and Fahad have made waves all through the year. While they do dip into womenswear, it’s their menswear that is the most innovative and creative. Their menswear gives us all some punch in the clothes and their FPW collections are a testament to that.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Arsalan Iqbal seperated ways from his label Arsalan and Yahseer and is now working for his own label. His designs are amazingly wearable (famous for his kurtas) and his PBCW’13 collection featured amazing sherwanis. His footwear collection is amazing as well, then there are those awesome funky shirts too!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Best Retail Brand: Bareeze Man

They have a freakin’ jumpsuit. ‘nough said!

Fullscreen capture 152014 81251 PM.bmp

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Best Grooms Wear: HSY

Yes, yes, i know, he’s one of the best bridal wear designers too, but look at his sherwanis!! They’re just the right amount of bling! And his suits (while not from his bridal collection but PSFW) were to die for! He’s the man!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

So here’s hoping 2014 is a better year for Pakistan in 2014. Have a fashionable year gentlemen and guys like me who like casual business attire more!

Images Courtesy: Facebook pages of respected people and google images.