Jeddah-based designer Nora Al Shaikh launched her namesake brand in 2012, drawing on her Saudi heritage and globally-relevant aesthetic to craft versatile threads that speak to both East and West. “As my label has grown, the most gratifying part has been to see my clothes being worn by women from Jeddah to L.A. I take the time to listen to my customers and try to understand what they look for in a wardrobe,” says the designer. “Having that connection is an important part of my process.” Vogue Arabia previews her Spring 2017 collection, titled La Croisette, and uncovers what’s behind the feminine and evocative threads that are primed for the world citizen on-the-go.
During a trip to the South of France, Al Shaikh traced the coastlines, visiting the Côte d’Azur, Cannes, and Monaco. These locations––which have also been creative provocation for designers including Jean Paul Gaultier and Thierry Mugler––inspired the effortless glamour that makes up her summertime offering. “It got me thinking about other corniches located in iconic cities by the sea, such as Alexandria, Beirut, Rio, and Jeddah, where I live. I began to design looks that are an homage to these iconic seaside promenades,” adds Al Shaikh. Expect reworked tailored shirts inspired by menswear, styles elevated with ruffles, and peekaboo openings that add edge to modest, longline dresses.
“There is also a Saudi sensibility to my collections, which comes through in the draping and layering of different looks on the body,” notes the designer. “Apart from classic white and a hint of blue, the colors are surprisingly subdued for a Spring/Summer collection. There are a lot of earth tones, such as browns and burgundies, which look amazing against tanned skin.”
Nora Al Shaikh is stocked at S*uce boutiques across the region, Dress Me Fashion Store in Doha, and Cugini Boutique in Jeddah.