A flair for the Moroccan lifestyle
Moroccan style is simply fascinating. The different facets of its life and culture have captivated people to recreate their own interpretations of Moroccan lifestyle. Its signature architecture is often extravagant with beautifully shaped arches and geometric tiles. Interiors are accented with intricately carved wooden furniture and colorful carpets and pillows. Traditional Moroccan colors range from vibrant shades of gold, red, orange, and blue.
As for fashion, flowy kaftans and intricate embroideries usually take centerstage.
Recently, Moroccan designer Fatim-Zahra Ettalbi introduced her brand “Zaïn” through a private salon show at Rustan’s. Founded in 2015, the goal was to not only showcase the intrinsic talents of Moroccans, but also to revive some of the slowly fading crafts.
She strives to infuse traditional ways with contemporary styles.
The 25-piece collection, entitled “Foorprint in the Desert,” highlighted pieces that are produced only in limited quantities by Moroccan artisans. Ease in movement, the comfortable looking pieces range from resort, casual, to even eveningwear.
Divided into three segments, the first set entitled “Shades of Spring” was created with a bohemian lady in mind who loves to travel. “Winter Moonlight” followed, inspired by a stylish and glamorous mother whom the designer met. The muse prioritized valued for her family. Still, she was very sophisticated even with work commitment and family duties.
Lastly, “Winds of Autumn” embodies an ambitious woman who does not believe in trend – someone who chooses clothes that freely expresses her personality.
Ettalbi gives an insight to the Moroccan styles of today in an interview with Rappler.
You say that your style is a merge of the old and new Morocco. So, what makes it modern?
First of all, either the cut or the style of the outfit. Kimonos are not a Moroccan outfit. It’s international; it came from Japan. This is now becoming fashionable. I mixed it with the Moroccan craft, which is the band that you will see all around – the trimmings. This is made of silk thread. We need three women to make one meter of that by hand. These are all hand made. This is the way I would say we revived Moroccan craftsmanship and how I infused it with modern fashion.
How did you choose the fabric and embroideries?
Sometimes it’s really hard to find the fabric that will have a lot of embroideries. I always go for fluid fabrics because a Moroccan kaftan is always fluid. If you see the really traditional Moroccan kaftan, they are really fluid with embroideries. I choose them based on the style I want to do and the women I’m inspired of. The choice of the fabric is always based on the style I have in mind or the women I have in mind.
This is your first time in Manila. How do you think Filipino women will respond to your clothes?
I will tell you something very surprising. Before coming to Manila, I am selling my collection in the website. I was thinking that my collection would be more adapted to Europeans since Morocco is close to Europe and to the Middle East. I was really surprised when I saw that Filipinos were ranked fourth in my website. That really encouraged me to come here and I’m so glad that Rustan’s trusted the brand and had us here. Filipinos now are very open to other cultures, most importantly to Morocco. I hope this is my first step in the Philippines.
You said that it’s the women around you who inspire you. What kind of women motivates you to create looks for them?
I’ll tell you something about Moroccan fashion. My mother and grandmother when they choose their outfit for big ceremonies, they all are gathered with my aunts and their other women friends to talk about every single detail of the kaftan. What will be the color? What will be the cut?
This is a woman thing in our culture – talking about fashion at home, when we’re drinking tea. These women inspire me; the women who love to take care of themselves and those that also don’t necessarily believe in trends but take fashion as a way to express themselves. These women inspire me a lot.
The fashion presentation coincides with “Le Couer de Muroc” a Morrocan festival held at Rustan’s Makati.
In partnership with the Moroccon National Tourism Office, the festival also brings to Manila a number of Morocco’s most coveted items. Colorful djellabas (the traditional loose-fitting garb with full sleeves) and babouche (Moroccan slippers) with varying designs are ready for fitting.
Beauty fanatics will definitely enjoy shopping for argan oil infused products. Foodies can choose from individually packed spices and sweets. Add colorful touches at home with chic and authentic lamps, tableware, tea sets, and carpets.
These are all for sale only until the end of August 2018. – Rappler.com