As for this time I could not be there it is my pleasure to write about the Dubai Fashion Forward venue again and can hardly wait for the next one to come.
Fashion Forward Dubai (FFWD), the region’s most progressive fashion platform has debuted its Fall/Winter ’16 collections on 31st of March, marking the start of the four day industry-focused fashion event. The event was FFWD’s seventh edition, having launched in April 2013. Over six successful seasons FFWD has matured into a recognised and credible platform respected amongst designers and industry professionals regionally and internationally. This season has seen FFWD earn the endorsement of the Dubai Design and Fashion Council (DDFC), as well as moving venues to its new home at Dubai Design District (d3).
From 31st March- 2nd April, guests saw catwalk shows and presentations from 24 of the region’s best couture, and ready-to-wear designers, as well as 15 jewellery and accessories designers exhibiting in the curated accessories space: The Showcase.
Sunday April 3rd was The Showroom day, a space within d3 which has offered regional and international buyers and media a dedicated location to conduct face to face meetings with all 39 participating apparel and accessories designers.
Through the continuing strategic partnership with d3, an integral component of every FFWD season is the ‘d3 Fashion Talks’, a programme to generate debate and discussion on issues facing the region’s fashion industry. And this was one of the times I truly was fascinated also in the past edition. Where I could really listen to something new from the business of fashion and all the businesses popping up.
The influential industry speakers at FFWD this season included: CEO of Moda Operandi, Deborah Nicodemus, celebrity stylist Anita Patrickson, plus a dynamic panel of international buyers including Pascale Camert – Galeries Lafayette, Paris and Song Pham – Harvey Nichols (Hong Kong).
On her participation at FFWD, Deborah Nicodemus, CEO of Moda Operandi said: “We, as Moda Operandi, are thrilled to be returning to the region and this time, taking part in Fashion Forward. As it will be my first time in Dubai, I am especially looking forward to becoming more familiar with the regional designers and the city and its extraordinary culture. I am also keen on sharing the Moda Operandi story during our talks and hope that it will inspire young fashion entrepreneurs in the region.”
“We have always taken our role as global talent scouts seriously and it is exciting to engage first hand with designers from new markets, and potentially discover amazing talent for Moda’s website. We have a strong portfolio of Middle Eastern designers featured on the site, and we hope to add to this list of talent after our trip.”
The Middle East is widely regarded as an innovator in technology and design, and the integration of the two is becoming increasingly prominent within the region’s fashion industry. For Fall/Winter ‘16 FFWD partnered with Samsung to drive this conversation forward.
Abdo Chlala, the Regional Head of IT and Mobile Division for Samsung has offered his insights during a panel discussion entitled 3D Printing to Wearable Tech: The Future of Fashion.
“We recognize the exponential growth and importance of the fashion industry in the Middle East; it has become one of the most highly considered passion points that unites people from various backgrounds throughout the region. As an integral part of the industry as a whole, technology has permeated vital aspects of the industry,” said Chlala. “Samsung is excited to continue connecting people in the region with their passion for fashion through our collaboration with FFWD for its seventh season. This partnership is demonstrative of our commitment to the fashion industry, during the event and through the Samsung Designer Enablement Program later this year.”
Samsung hosted an exclusive event in collaboration with FFWD. During the event, Abdo Chlala moderated a panel discussion amongst industry professionals discussing Technology’s Role in the Fashion Space Today.
In line with FFWD’s commitment to nurturing future regional design talents, Fall/Winter’16 sees FFWD once again supported FAD Institute of Luxury Fashion & Style – a UAE based initiative which nurtures & incubates emerging talent from the Middle East. FAD offers world-class professional training in Luxury, Fashion Marketing & Communication, Retail, and Fashion Styling & Make Up in partnership with international institutions. FAD also hosted a networking event at FFWD on April 1st, marking the launch of its new Dubai campus in Knowledge Village.
I was so happy that their Snapchat was on the whole time, so I was able to go trough the day as I was there. Snapchat was reporting live from the event for the dedicated Fashion Forward Dubai story. Using geo-targeting, a selection of snaps taken by guests at FFWD was also added to the story and broadcasted to all the audience.
Now is time for the next on in october. To a soon hello, Fashion Forward!
Photos: Courtesy of Getty Images