Nature is a rich source of inspiration that keeps on giving new details and concepts every season. While flowers are a stable concept for the spring season, they have only been given justice by a very limited number of designers.
Sami Amin is a local accessory designer with a wide base of loyal fans. Over the span of a long and well-established career, the designer has captured the country’s most renowned monuments and natural gems through his artistic creations.
On the other hand, Aiisha Ramadan is a woman of effortless statements that target confident women. The Lebanese designer is well-known for her smart silhouettes and modern style.
Earlier this week, the two powerhouses joined forces to introduce a must-have collection for any fashion fanatic. While the monochromic garments resembled the unstoppable waves of the ocean, the accessories embodied the beauty of blooming nature.
L’Azur collection by Aiisha Ramadan marks the designer’s 2018 masterpieces. The pan-Arab designer approached Amin a few months ago for a collaboration worthy of the Arab Fashion Week runway.
The brass and leather bags simulated growing gardens that blossom on the hands of the carrier; meanwhile, it also embraced the ocean’s most precious gems, pearls, and crystals.
Daily News Egypt sat with Sami Amin to talk collaborations, experimenting with new materials, and targeting a pan-Arab audience.
What was the main inspiration behind these designs?
The inspiration came from Aiisha Ramadan’s theme for her new collection, L’Azur.
Ramadan believes in the positive and magical power of the sea, whereby every design became the outcome of a journey under the sea among mysterious creatures with a majestic beauty.
Inspired by the deep treasures of the sea, a variety of colours danced together primarily in shades of blues and reds. Nonetheless, these colours did not drift far away from Aiisha’s favoured shades of white and black.
The collection embodies clean lines for morning cocktail events and expands to more intricate hand-made evening gowns, some of which consisted of 42,000 crystals and countless hours of hand embroidery.
Do you have a certain favourite piece?
They are all amazing, each in its own way. The collaboration for us was very unique and the fact that Sami used crystals and pearls was challenging at the beginning; but, this was Aiisha’s direction, and we fell in love with the outcome.
However, I believe that if we have to choose a piece, it will be the big flowers bag and the bracelet; they are very artistic.
How would you define the woman that would opt for these unique bags?
A woman that wants to stand out and be the centre of attention; someone who appreciates art and would be happy to wear a piece of art to complement her beauty.
What encouraged you to work with Aiisha Ramadan in particular?
Aiisha is one of our most admired clients. After buying several pieces from the Alexandria collection, she approached us for a collaboration.
She loved the brand, the spirit, the handmade work and the designs; accordingly, she was confident that we could do something together.
At the beginning, we were hesitant because the direction was different from our work. Meanwhile, it was also our first time to incorporate crystals and pearls. Nonetheless, we loved the outcome and loved dealing with Aiisha.
On the other hand, we are absolutely happy to introduce Sami Amin to the Arab fashion week through her brand and through the “Aiisha by Sami Amin” collaboration.
Why did you decide to showcase this collaboration at the Arab fashion week?
It is one of the biggest five fashion weeks in the world, and Aiisha participates in it every season; accordingly, we trusted her choice.
The Arab Fashion Week in Dubai is the only platform in the Middle East that showcases resort and pre-fall collections, the two most important seasons.
What did this collaboration add to Sami Amin as a brand?
We are still in the middle of the collaboration; therefore, we will have to wait and watch. However, we will definitely work with crystals and pearls again in our new collections.
Meanwhile, implementing something that fits both aesthetics was a challenging and beneficial creative exercise.
After a successful collaboration, should we expect more in the near future?
Yes for sure! Usually the first collaboration is the hardest and most challenging—but now, after a successful trial, we will be keener to collaborate with more entities.
Tell us more about the creative and manufacturing process of this collaboration?
The main idea of the bag was inspired by Sami Amin’s Quran bag, which was first introduced as part of the classic collection.
She liked it and suggested designing a similar concept, but more like a cage with elements from the Alexandria collection. After he designed it, she loved it and decided that the two brands should work together on a line of bags that has the same aesthetic but with more premium and sophisticated details, hence the crystals and pearls.
The general dynamic during this collaboration was an equal creative relation between Aiisha and Sami as both added their personal inputs until this outcome came to life.
This collection is set to be sold in Egypt and Dubai. Did this new market impact the designs?
I am not sure if the designs were in fact affected by the markets. I believe it was more of an artistic experience that was meant to capture the interest of whoever sees it anywhere.