Emirati designer Rafia Helal bin Drai is one of many designers taking part in an unconventional fashion show in Paris aboard Le Jean Bruel, the largest bateau-mouche on the Seine River on July 30, the UAE daily the National reported.
The fashion show is the latest to be organized by J Model Management, run by Vietnamese-born model Jessica Minh Anh. The company is also responsible for staging the world’s highest catwalk in Kuala Lumpur’s Petronas’ Twin Towers Skybridge in Malaysia earlier this year.
“We have a huge database of fashion brands worldwide,” said Anh, “and for each show we look at our choices to see which suit the show best.”
Bin Drai, founder of Mauzan, “rare pearl” in Arabic, puts stylish and trendy spins on the basic black kaftan popularly worn by Muslim women in the UAE and other Gulf countries.
“With Mauzan I really like the designs because you think that normally ‘abayas’ are very similar, but each of the pieces is different and very interesting and there is a combination of colors, not just black.” Said Anh.
Aside featuring the Emirati designer in the upcoming Paris show, Anh has future plans for hosting an event in Dubai.
Mauzan may have already established an international following with consumers from Switzerland, England, and the United States. Bin Drai anticipates adapting styles to accommodate a new market should she find buyers on the upcoming exclusive show.
“The shows are very exclusive, so it's not a commercial show, it's not like the fashion weeks," she says. "We have a very limited amount of guests. Only the fashion designers, the buyers, ambassadors of different countries, which is very important, which shows that our show is at a very serious level,” said Anh.