All photos by Chantelle D’mello
As Qatar goes maroon ahead of National Day on Friday, several designers have come up with new ways for people to sport their enthusiasm.
This year, offerings are blending contemporary Western styles with a local flair, as many weave images of the Emir, Father Emir, Sheikha Moza and numerous other local celebrities into their winter wear.
Many of the latest pieces can be seen at Darb Al Saai, which also includes various items such as throw pillows with images of the Emir and other members of the ruling family printed into the fabric.
Saudi designer Razan Suliman said the days leading up to QND are a perfect opportunity to debut new Qatar-inspired collections.
Suliman, whose clothing line Fanilla Couture is one of the more widely known local brands, created one of the first National Day-dedicated collections last year, dubbed “Malakat Al Sahraa” (Queen of the Desert).
This year, her clothes draw on inspiration from other local elements, featuring images of the Emir interspersed with Arabic calligraphy, gold necklaces and chains, pearls and coins.
Speaking to fashion blog Under Your Abaya, Suliman said that the inspiration for her latest collection, which includes cape dresses and kaftans, form-fitting leggings and pencil skirts and baggy sweatshirts, came from Qatari women and their jewelry.
“Shaikhat Al Zayn is what we used to call pretty women who wore beautiful dresses with gold jewelry. All the designs in the collection contain elements of Arabian gold jewelry.
The collection is in a palette of jewel-hued maroon, gold and white (to reflect Qatar’s flag), and has the brand’s signature digital art and calligraphy. The cape dress has the word Qatar printed on them in gold Arabic calligraphy, while the other pieces are printed in the patterns of traditional gold jewelry and pearls that generations old used to wear (and sometimes still wear, especially…older women).”
Prices for the various items on sale vary from QR70 for simple printed dresses in national colors with the words “I love Qatar” on them, to over QR800 for heavily embroidered velvet and chiffon kaftans.
Other stores around the country are also cashing in on QND enthusiasm, offering a host of merchandise, souvenirs and stationery inspired by Qatar and its national colors.
Qatar Shopping Complex in Al Markhiya, for example, has been thoroughly decked out in maroon and white, selling Qatar-inspired sunglasses, t-shirts, pins, among other items.