The UAE’s most talented up-and-coming fashion designers will showcase their creative flair to a global audience when the Middle East’s only dedicated leather exhibition opens in Dubai this month.
Year-two students from prestigious fashion institute ESMOD Dubai, will line-up an inspiring array of leather garments, handbags, and accessories at Leatherworld Middle East 2016, combining a mix of traditional techniques, leather manipulation and cutting edge technology.
The 17 pieces, which include jackets, suits, skirts, dresses, jumpsuits and bags, have been selected from more than 40 designs, and will take centre-stage at the Fashion Avenue at Leatherworld Middle East 2016, which runs from 26-28 April at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre.
Crafted from leather supplied by the three-day event’s exhibitors, the exclusive showcase will demonstrate the unique relationship between leather and fashion, whilst offering UAE designers a global platform to connect with international suppliers and manufacturers.
“This collaboration opens our students’ minds in terms of what they can do with leather,” said Tamara Hostal, Founder & CEO of ESMOD Dubai, Leatherworld Middle East’s Official Show Supporter.
“All the garments have been created and realized by the students themselves who come from many different countries, which is a characteristic of ESMOD Dubai. This opens a door for them to start their own leather collections in the future, whilst further positioning Dubai as the wider region’s fashion design hub.”
ESMOD, based in France, is one of the world’s leading fashion institutes. It opened its Dubai branch in 2006, where it has since graduated 103 students – 23 of which went on to establish their own fashion brands.
Hala Al Shammari, an Iraqi student of Fashion Design and Pattern Making at ESMOD Dubai, will showcase a ‘Sporty, Sailor Chic’ inspired line at Leatherworld Middle East’s Fashion Avenue. “I love the challenge of working with the various thicknesses and textures of leather,” said Al Shammari, who will look for work in a fashion firm after graduation. “It’s a great opportunity to learn how real leather works on a garment and how it falls and drapes over the body.”
Fellow student Corrina Joyce from Germany, spoke of the inspiration behind her collection: “I am inspired by a deeper story, by imbalanced beauty and imperfections. I am inspired by moods and impressions I gain by travelling and meeting interesting people.
“Working with leather is unique, because it has so many different textures, thicknesses and shapes that you have to challenge your conventional thinking and come up with creative ways to make a garment pattern. It makes you question how your design follows your material,” added Joyce.
The Fashion Avenue is one of several show features at Leatherworld Middle East, the wider region’s only trade fair covering the global leather industry’s entire value chain, from tanneries, machinery and chemical suppliers, to manufacturers and designers of finished leather goods.
Ahmed Pauwels, CEO of Messe Frankfurt Middle East, the organiser of Leatherworld Middle East, said: “Our partnership with ESMOD Dubai at the Fashion Avenue throws the spotlight onto the enormous potential of talented designers throughout the Middle East, and plays a vital role in furthering the ongoing development of the regional fashion design and leather creation industries.
“Typically students don’t have a lot of opportunities to work with leather, so it’s fantastic to see them present their unique interpretations of how fashion and leather go hand-in-hand, even more-so with leather supplied by some of our leading exhibitors.”
Other features of Leatherworld Middle East include the Trend Area, where an exclusive range of luxurious global leather innovations will be seen for the first time; Leather Production for semi-finished and finished animal hides; the Shoe Box for mid to high-end leather footwear; and the Designers’ Area, where bespoke creations will be on display.
Now in its second edition, Leatherworld Middle East 2016 has gathered wide support from leading international leather trade and tannery associations, including the French Hides Association (Syndicat General des Cuirs et Peaux), the French Federation of Tanners (Federation Française de la Tannerie Mégisserie) and the Trade Development Authority of Pakistan.