Veiled Threads Part 1
In Riyadh, the Arts and Skills Institute is Saudi Arabia's first fashion school and where ambitious young designers work towards a college degree and a yearly exhibition. Directed by Marian Lacombe.
Released on 6/13/2013
(cheerful orchestral music)
I'm Saudi, and I look like I'm wearing my abaya.
I do everything like other Saudi women.
At the same time, I have the ambition to be
an international Saudi fashion designer.
I graduated from Art and Skills Institute,
and I studied Business Administration
in King Saud University,
and I design everything, starting from abayas
to evening wear to casual wear to jackets.
The ambition of the school
and the fashion diploma program, which we deliver here,
is to develop future generation professionals;
people who can actually start the fashion industry
here in Saudi Arabia.
There is no support for the local fashion industry
and Saudi fashion industry,
made by Saudis, designed by Saudis,
and that's what we're trying to achieve.
[Haifa] I was inspired by gothic,
so I want to mix it up, very girly with harsh
and some spikes.
I like something different, something unique,
something like not everyone would find it
and hopefully, one day, I can be
a well-known fashion designer.
Of course, there are challenges finding your own network,
finding your team.
Every designer in the world
that every graduated faced that,
and they are really the first ones educated at that level,
knowing how it should be done.
So, they're not happy with anything;
they are looking, really, for perfection
in terms of production and so on.
So that is the challenge.
And also, coupling all those businesses
with the family life,
and here is it very, very, very important.
But again, you know, the same as in any country.
You know, if you have the support of your family,
your husband or your children or your father,
it's so much easier to do anything.
We already built the fashion industry in abayas.
Even abayas can really look stylish and modern.
Like my example, my abaya with the zipper,
here, all over the shoulder.
I'm mixing the modern ideas with our traditional wear.
We all love sunglasses.
We love gold in abayas,
we love to wear designer bags.
We wear everything under the abaya,
starting from shorts to jeans to gowns
to high-brand or haute couture.
We wear everything.
Sew patience, patience.
Here, now it's okay, just don't pull it,
because the moment you pull it, look what's happened.
So you have to be loose, okay, continue.
No, no, no, mistake.
Remember because you have to go under,
The long stitch is always under, right?
Come out, small stitch.
Again, you're going under.
That's right, don't pull too strong.
Sometimes, you got entangled, be careful.
It's a lot of women enterprises here.
They own businesses, they run businesses,
they're very well-educated,
and they are very fashion-conscious.
They like to look beautiful.
It's changing constantly like every society,
how they're evolving, what they're comfortable with,
what they want to achieve
for themselves and for their children,
because it's a new generation coming,
and they also have something to say.
[Noura] The name of the collection is
Break Through the Glass Ceiling, Sexism and Racism
that not allowed the woman to do stuff and to work,
to be like in a high level.
This is the armor that emphasizes woman's body.
She's feminine and yet strong.
She did it, she break the chains.
The other thing is the cage.
You can see the cage appears here,
so she's free now.
I used this color gray 'cause it's pure sky color.
The sky's the limit.
Every intelligent woman, smart, beautiful woman
deserves to work hard and do whatever she wants.
And this is my artwork if you want to see it.
You can see the spikes from that, she break it,
and she's still feminine,
she's still elegant to glamorous.
I love this idea, this is my message,
it's always to be a strong woman,
beautiful, strong and smart, it's important.
And the attitude, attitude is fashion.
You can see this hat is like a cage.
Everything is spikes, the sketches, the shoes.
[Interviewer] Do you customize your shoes?
[Noura] No, this is available.
[Interviewer] With a little fur?
[Noura] No, it's pony hair, and I love it,
it's a lot of fun.
[Interviewer] How old are you?