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Desert life with Amal Al Raisi

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When I sat down to start this blog post and started looking up quotes about getting out of your comfort zone for a bit – one struck a chord with me…….

“A comfort zone is a beautiful place, but nothing ever grows there”

My dedicated readers to my blog and my various social media platforms especially Instagram will know I’m a fashion high street girl through and through.  I grew up with the high street, my go-to places are on the high street, I can only really afford the high street and I will always be a high street girl. End of.  But sometimes, just sometimes, it’s good to push yourself in another direction to experience something a bit different and come out of your comfort zone.  So a couple of weeks ago, I did just that.

The lovely people at Fashion Exclusive here in Dubai invited me to their HQ to check out some of the regions top fashion designers and their collections.  So predictably, I just fell in love with all the stunning creations (ok I admit, out of my price bracket) but it doesn’t stop me admiring and in my case, setting up a little photo shoot (with amazing fashion photographer Claire Stafford) to showcase some of the fab pieces.  So over the next while on my blog, I will be featuring a couple of the designers with myself wearing some of the clothes from their amazing collections (Molly may even make an appearance in a mini-me style post so watch this space).

First on my radar is the fab Amal Al Raisi

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Based in Oman, Amal Al Raisi began her career in the fashion industry 9 years ago and in 2015 created a ready-to-wear collection inspired by her background and culture of traditional Omani dresses, kaftans, abayas and jalabiyas.  Along with just LOVING her whole SS17 collection, what struck me the most about this designer is her beliefs and admiration of today’s power women who  “prioritize family but also pursue their dreams”.

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Her SS17 collection – featuring the above co-ordinated set including culottes, top and bomber jacket is inspired by the region of Dhofar which is located in Southern Oman and is known for not only its beautiful wadies, but also for the most richest abundance of frankincense in the world.  Her prints were designed to reflect the amazing scenery of Dhofar including the majestic nature, Omani mountains and iconic trees.  The colour palettes consists of turquoise and teal hues that draw inspiration from the dominant colours of the wadies in the region.  “Powder, jasmine white and luban add pops of colour reflecting the vibrant hues that cover Oman whilst the mix of light crepe and sheer mesh fabrics together with fluid silhouettes give tribute to the feminine yet modern woman.”

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I have to say this co-ordinated set is right up my street!  I probably grabbed this outfit first when I was picking my pieces as I love matching sets plus I have a great love for cute bomber jackets which you can pair with almost anything.  The outfit as a whole is super comfy to wear with the culottes having that flattering midi-length style.  Again this look can be worn both casual and glammed up for a night out.

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As mentioned above, this is something quite different for my actual blog and I think what I love the most is the story behind each designers collection.  The thoughts, inspiration and ideas in putting a collection together is massive from the print design to actually creating pieces that women will wear.  So knowing the work and creativity that goes into pieces like this one I’m wearing makes it all a lot more special.

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Another reason for obsessing over Amal Al Raisi is her ‘mini-me’ collection, pieces she designed for little girls to match their mums, sisters, aunts etc.  I mean…….the cuteness! Of course, I picked a couple of pieces for myself and Molly for the photo shoot and which I will have on the blog very soon – I can’t even cope with how adorable they are especially with the fab Al Qudra desert and lakes as our stunning background.

Over the next month or so, I’ll be featuring a couple of other fashion designers from the region on my blog…..I really hope it’s something you enjoy seeing too but fear not, that high street girl inside of me ain’t going anywhere anytime soon ha, ha.

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Until next time………………..

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Irene xoxo

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