After being featured on the popular show Project Runway Middle East, Amna El Shandaweely, a driven and unique local fashion designer, has just serenaded us with a jaw-dropping winter collection that gracefully intertwines traditional tribal trim with hip, street style fashion. El Shandaweely collaborated with Timberland to bring us the creative modern twist to her new collection.
Titled The City of the Amazigh, the collection is inspired by the Amazigh people of Siwa Oasis, specifically the mysterious hidden women of the city. In fact, El Shandaweely tells us, “every collection I do is inspired by a city… I am inspired by architecture, culture, and the music.” She uses traditional ornaments and patterned fabrics mixed with modern fashion, such as Timberland shoes, to style her outfits. Her second main inspiration stems from a desire to showcase the existence and beauty of Amazigh women. “You never see a woman among Amazigh people, so I wanted to show women and make them stand out, to tell people that they exist.” While on her photo shoot, she managed to see two young Amazigh girls who were rustically dressed in traditional tribal gear and unpolished hair, further inspiring the styling of her collection.
The City of the Amazigh winter collection was shot in the beautiful landscapes of Siwa Oasis. Carefully selecting her locations, El Shandaweely wanted to not only situate her erratic tribal pieces in the place that inspired her, but to also focus on “making people feel the tribal-hip vibe, and not to only focus on the fashion and embroidery,” she assures. El Shandaweely’s collection is divided into four scenes, with each scene depicting how people have perceived her tribal fashion. The first highlights the awkward gazes and weird impressions people leave on those who choose to dress traditionally. The second focuses on the uncomforting feel involved when we are looked down upon for wearing something unconventional. “We have an amazing culture that we can use to wear on a daily basis, but we never do, afraid that people will look at us awkwardly,” she tells us. El Shandaweely often captions her photos on social media with Arabic poems and sayings, also to denote the significant use of culture and literature in her work.
“The third and fourth scene are about us invading the streets with confidence, and about us deciding to get out and rule the world with tribal colours!” – Amna El Shandaweely.
Check out the stunning exclusive footage of her new collection below.
Models: Rawan and Sarah Bombosh, Amna El Shandaweely, Rama Abdelrahman, Ahmed Walaa Soror, Ahmed El Shandaweely
Art director and stylist: Ahmed Soror
Make up artist: Rama Abdelrahman
Photography and film maker: Loof Productions
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