I've noticed time and time again that when it comes to abaya designers, some of the brightest and most talented started off designing abayas for themselves and their friends and families, out of the frustration of a lack of abayas that suited their own tastes, and word would spread about their talent for designing and creating beautiful abayas. This was the case for Palestinian-born abaya designer, and journalist by day, Shahera Khader, who recently launched her own abaya line, "Abayat Hera."
Born and brought up in Saudi Arabia, Shahera was herself an abaya wearer, and tired of the "stereotypical abayas" that were on offer, she decided to make a change and channel her passion for fashion through designing and making stylish and on-trend abayas. Having lived in Saudi Arabia for so long, Shahera has a good idea of what women in the Gulf want when it comes to their abayas.
"Living in Saudi most of my life I have always felt that the trends were always late to come to the Kingdom," explains Shahera, "I wanted my abayas to be unique in that they gave women a chance to experience fashion first hand. The abaya has always been a black potato bag that we are forced to wear. They all look much the same and have little to do with the world of fashion. Now, abayas can make a statement of identity, and trend. I incorporated the styles that were "in" to my abayas."
Shahera's first collection, which was launched six months ago and titled "Harir Al Malaka" (Arabic for "the silk of queens") was a series of abayas made with organza silk and embellished with glamorous pearls, sparkling Swarovski crystals and edgy spikes. Her intention was to make women feel exactly like the name of her collection - like queens.
|The designer herself modelling one of her designs|
Each abaya takes Shahera a week to make as she pays scrupulous attention to detail and strives for a flawfless finish.
Shahera is now based in Lebanon but pays regular visits to Saudi Arabia and Bahrain, and makes custom abayas on request.
For more information on the label and on how to order, pay a visit to her Facebook page or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also contact her on 00961370227773 or 0096176501313.