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Bint Thani

“The collection is inspired by a fisherman’s journey,” explained Bint Thani designer Khulood Al Thani to following her Fall 2016 showcase. For the most part, the muse’s uniform consisted of roomy tunics and loose trousers in a dark palette marked by vibrant sunset oranges and pretty sea greens. The hues were color blocked in graphic shapes, while a textured black vest that featured goat hair fringe pointed to the resilience of her muse’s spirit.

However, for all the steadiness of Al Thani’s hand, at times the clothes’ graphic cuts came across as unnecessarily complicated, purely for the sake of flexing design skills. To wit: the sky blue paneled look over a black pencil skirt flapped needlessly; a pair of trousers featured random fishnet patches and slits across the knees, or, in another case, quizzically included a white diamond; the goat-hair vest didn’t also need to be asymmetrical. “It’s not really ‘fashion’—rather, it’s an architectural statement. This is a ‘design’ brand,” concluded Al Thani. But design only works in the long run if it’s “smart,” and while many of these looks were intriguing, one might wonder what exactly is the market for such a proposition. Who will wear these clothes? Certainly, there must be a specific crowd of nonconformist women keen to bank on such a brand, but Al Thani’s overarching design vision remains somehow too isolated.

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