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Fashion Pakistan Week Winter/Festive 2017 is scheduled to begin in Karachi on Monday, with a private showing hosted by Shamaeel. This is the first time a couture show will be held outside the main show area (Shamaeel’s show is at an exclusive venue), which by the way, is a regular practice for couture shows around the world. So that’s definitely an experience to look forward to. The fashion week venue itself has evolved from the Pearl Continental to a new marquee, which is also refreshing.

The lineup, however, is a mixed bag and isn’t all that refreshing. I counted the number of shows I could actually get excited over and they totaled to 10/19. Misha Lakhani’s opening on Day 1 will definitely be worth making it to the show on time but the rest of the day is rather humdrum unless the remaining 6 designers really surprise us. Aamna Aqeel is still remembered for her FPW debut collection but nothing memorable has followed, even though I do feel she is capable of creativity. Erum Khan, Saira Rizwan and Suffuse are all established bridal designers but again, can they innovate wow moments that are runway worthy? That’s a big question mark.


The exclusive show hosted by Shamaeel is not on this FPW schedule (separate invites have gone out) but it is a high point of fashion week.


Day 2 is stronger with Sanam Chaudhri, Wardha Saleem, Sadaf Malaterre and Deepak Perwani on the lineup. There are Emran Rajput and HEM in-between but let’s just wait and see what they pull off. ER is quite popular amongst the celeb circuit these days so maybe he’ll pull some star power into his show.

There are some big names on Day 3, with Tena Durrani opening the show. The thing about Tena is that she has a very sound aesthetic but her shows can either fall on the commercial or creative route, depending on the collection. She’s unpredictable. Nauman Arfeen, on the other hand, is too predictable. But then Saira Shakira are a solid name to have as is Adnan Pardesy who has shown some of his strongest collections on this platform. Let’s hope he’s in form this year. Maheen Khan, after officially retiring her coveted brand ‘Maheen Khan’ from the fashion week runway is making a comeback and honestly, I’m not complaining because hers will be a visually pleasing show. And the finale, of course, is a highly bankable Sana Safinaz. Always a pleasure to witness!

So these are the shows I’m personally anticipating: Shamaeel, Misha Lakhani, Sanam Chaudhri, Wardha Saleem, Deepak Perwani, Sadaf Malaterre, Saira Shakira, Adnan Pardesy, Maheen Khan and Sana Safinaz.

There are big names missing from the lineup but then not showing is always more of a designer’s loss. Designers need to consistently show seasonal collections to stay relevant. It’s very simple.