In this year's Grazia Middle East's Grazia Style Awards, I showed my support for Qatar-based designers by voting for Toujouri for the "Best Regional Designer" award, the high end label created by Iraqi born designer Lama El Moatassem. Toujouri, which means "treasure chest" in Qatari Arabic, is the only designer label to have been nominated from Qatar.
|The gorgeous Lama El Moatassem|
You may remember that one of my first posts here on Under Your Abaya was about Toujouri and Lama, but for those of you who haven't heard of Toujouri, here's a quick recap:
After studying at the London School of Fashion and Central Saint Martins, and gaining valuable experience in both the design and business and marketing aspects of the fashion world by working at Chloe in Paris as well as working alongside Mathhew Williamson in London for three years, Lama decided to pursue her dream of launching her own fashion line and launched Toujouri in 2008.
Toujouri is a high end, luxurious womenswear label consisting of precious pieces adorned with rare embellishments, intricate embroidery and prints made from rich fabrics. Everything is hand stitched, hand embroidered and hand printed. The label offers something for every kind of fashion personality - east-meets west pieces; there are pieces with heavy arabic flavors like kaftans, while other pieces like cocktail dresses and jumpsuits have a more western cut and flavor to them. Some pieces combine the two.
Lama spends much time (and a lot of travelling) sourcing the fabrics and textiles, and working with the world's best manufacturers, buyers, departments stores and boutiques. Toujouri is even sold in Harrods in London ... I mean, how much better can you get than that? And Peter Marino designed her first flagship boutique, which is to open soon at The Pearl Qatar, the internationally renowned architect (and Karl Lagerfeld's friend) who also designed the Louis Vuitton and Dior flagships in paris.
Her current collection for S/S '11, called "Call of the Wild", was inspired by Sub-Saharan tribal culture, using safari colours as well as a palette of jewel tones and midnight colours like a night sky. Sequins and beads have been used to adorn the pieces with intricate tribe-like motifs and embellishments around the necklines and in panels as well as the use of traditional hand printing. My favorites from the collection have to be the kaftans and cocktail dresses with the watercolor-dye effect in midnight colours.
(From the S/S '11 "Call of the Wild" collection)
With only a few more days left for voting, if you would also like to vote for Toujouri, please click here.
Toujouri is available at:
Dubai - S*uce Boutique
Abu Dhabi - S*uce Boutique
Jeddah- Cugini and Escape Evening
Riyadh - Harvey Nichols and Escape Eevning