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Getting to Know Shady Zeineldine

interview-arab-designer-shady-zeineldine-on-madonnas-video-costumeThere are celebrities and then there’s Madonna. In an unmatched class of her own, the Queen of Pop launched her new “Living for Love” video and with it came a name that wasn’t known outside the Middle East fashion scene until now: Shady Zeineldine.

The Lebanese-born, Kuwait-based designer is known for his elaborate and heavily embellished gowns. As a self-taught designer who was fascinated by the world of glamour since the age of seven, Zeineldine took his first step in pursuing fashion design professionally in his early 20s by learning pattern making in Lebanon. He opened his first atelier in 2004 and currently resides and designs in Kuwait while also working between Lebanon and Los Angeles.

While creating his pieces, he envisions Aphrodite, the goddess of beauty who harmonizes all the feminine aspects of what a woman should be. “Every woman is beautiful in her own way. My mission as a designer is to bring out this beauty within and make her become her own Aphrodite,” Zeineldine told

It wouldn’t be completely wrong to assume that dressing Madonna is every designer’s dream. Many have cemented their names in history by creating looks for Queen Madge that went on to become iconic—who can forget the cone bustier by Jean Paul Gaultier?

A longtime fan of the singer, the designer added, “It’s a great honor to dress up my favorite idol.” Before the work on the costume started, Zeineldine went over the sketches with Madonna’s stylist B. Akerlund. The matador theme of her latest video played a part in the inspiration for the piece. “I used dark colors with highlights of red as well as lace on top of the nude color to accentuate Madonna’s gorgeous body,” he added.

Having already dressed Arab celebrities, Zeineldine has now set his sights on the international market. The notable names that he has recently dressed include singers Cheryl Cole and Thalia. After his collaboration with Madonna, we have a feeling that we will be seeing more of Zeineldine’s designs on the red carpet.
—Nouriah Al Shatti

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