Nora Attal walks the runway for Dior in Paris

Models present creations by Christian Dior at the end of the 2018-2019 Fall/Winter Haute Couture collection fashion show in Paris, on July 2, 2018. (AFP)
Updated 03 July 2018
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Nora Attal walks the runway for Dior in Paris

DUBAI: British-Moroccan model Nora Attal took to the runway during Christian Dior’s Fall/Winter Haute Couture show in Paris on Monday.
The 18-year-old, who landed a coveted British Vogue cover in 2017, showed off a silver jacquard dress and posted on Instagram shortly after the show, saying: “This collection was especially beautiful.”

Dior paid tribute to the skills of its ateliers at its runway show as models in pale, minimalistic gowns glided through an all-white showroom-turned-catwalk lined with mannequins.
A palette of powdery colors dominated the looks, with some gowns in dusty pink evoking soft ballerina costumes, in a collection that designer Maria Grazia Chiuri described as a focus on craft over flashy fashion, Reuters reported.
The surrounding mannequins, stacked to the ceiling and wearing prototypes of dresses, added a glimpse of the behind-the-scenes feel of the show.
“We are in this time where the idea of couture sometimes is wrong because people believe that couture is expensive so it has to be visible. We have to try to explain that couture is another story,” Chiuri said backstage after the show, staged in the gardens of the Rodin museum.
Models, some wearing berets with veils, hit the runway in an array of understated evening dresses in sandy pinks and oranges, while some donned skin-colored, see-through gowns. Others were adorned in dusty pink flowers.
Only a handful of houses are officially allowed to style themselves “Haute Couture” with a number of major brands including Louis Vuitton and Saint Laurent absent from the club.
To qualify, houses have to be approved by French fashion’s governing body and fulfil criteria covering staffing, skills and the service offered to private clients.
Model Karlie Kloss and actresses Katie Holmes and Kate Bosworth were among the stars sitting in the front row, and Bosworth said the craftsmanship was plain to see.
“(It) is just a tremendous amount of work and attention so I really appreciate it from that point of view,” she said.
Lebanese fashion blogger Lana El-Sahely was also part of the well-heeled crowd, as was French-Algerian actress Sofia Boutella.
“Paris! Feels so good to be back. Kicked off couture week with @dior, always a dream to be at the show,” El-Sahely posted on Instagram after the show.
Despite the blogger’s excitement, Chiuri said she wanted the French label’s latest prestige range to glorify classic craftsmanship rather than the flashy designs that rack up “likes” on social media.
“It’s hidden luxury,” the Italian explained as the collection went on show before the global fashion elite in Paris.
“The audience that buys couture is not an audience that spends its time on Instagram,” she told AFP.
Paris Haute Couture Week runs until July 5.
French label Givenchy, another brand which like Dior is owned by LVMH, also celebrated its ateliers at its show on Sunday, as designer Clare Waight Keller appeared at the end of the presentation alongside the team of couturiers.
Waight Keller is also known for designing the long-sleeved, boat necked gown that Meghan Markle wore for her wedding to Prince Harry.


Tourism chiefs salute fashion designer for holding son’s wedding in Lebanon

Elie Jr. and Christina Mourad. (Social media)
Updated 23 July 2019
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Tourism chiefs salute fashion designer for holding son’s wedding in Lebanon

  • The tourism leader said the situation was to do with Lebanese ego, but he emphasized that wedding parties held in Lebanon could be better than those staged abroad on all levels

BEIRUT: Lebanese fashion designer Elie Saab has been hailed by tourism chiefs for staging his son’s lavish wedding reception on home turf.
The influential Syndicate of Owners of Restaurants, Cafés, Night-Clubs and Pastries in Lebanon saluted Saab “for holding the wedding party of his son, Elie Jr., and the Lebanese bride, Christina Mourad, in Lebanon instead of abroad, as do tens of Lebanese leaders and lords.
“Holding wedding parties abroad has deprived the tourism sector as well as other sectors in Lebanon of important revenues that can revive the national economy,” the syndicate said.
The nonprofit body that represents restaurateurs, added that the glittering event had “turned the country into a huge wedding attended by more than 3,000 guests from inside and outside Lebanon.
“People shared their joy on social media, communicating Lebanon’s image of civilization and tourism to the world. This wedding filled Lebanese hotels, restaurants and nightclubs and stirred the economic cycle for more than 10 days before and after the wedding. We salute the man who loves peace and Lebanon a thousand times.”
Jean Abboud, president of the Association of Travel and Tourist Agents in Lebanon (ATTAL), told Arab News: “The syndicate’s stance comes in response to a phenomenon that emerged a few years ago. Distinguished people have been holding lavish weddings for their children abroad, where they spend millions of dollars. This has not only been done by politicians, but also businessmen and senior employees, as if it has become a trend or an added value.”
The tourism leader said the situation was to do with Lebanese ego, but he emphasized that wedding parties held in Lebanon could be better than those staged abroad on all levels. “We have outstanding wedding planners who get employed to plan weddings abroad,” he added.
Abboud pointed out that the tourist season in Lebanon this year had so far been promising with the number of visitors from GCC countries, and especially Saudi Arabia, up on 2018 figures. He added that the 2019 draft budget approved by Parliament last week had not put “any burdens on the tourism sector.”
Chairman of the Hotel Owners Association in Lebanon, Pierre Al-Ashkar, estimated the cost of wedding parties held by Lebanese people abroad to be around $400 million, including hotel accommodation, purchases and transportation, in addition to the expenses of the wedding itself.
He said: “There is no longer a difference between politicians and businessmen who choose to hold their children’s wedding parties abroad. It is true that these weddings are no more than a few hundred, but their expenses are huge and, therefore, deprive Lebanon of this money.”
Al-Ashkar pointed out that the number of tourists choosing Lebanon this summer had risen, highlighting a significant 30 percent increase in the proportion of visitors from Europe.
“However, the number of tourists from GCC countries, especially Saudi Arabia, has not been as we had wished,” he added.
“Maybe this is because these tourists, who have not been visiting Lebanon for five to seven years, now have business in other countries or investments in tourist places outside of Lebanon, especially as some countries now offer incentives to attract tourists carrying certain passports and residence permits.”