The Malaak girls
It's always fun to get into the mind of designers and artists. I love talking to them about their inspiration and thoughts (and try to steal a few style tips as well, shhh!!) So, I was really excited to meet Huda, the brains behind super-hot UAE label, Malaak.
Heading into Malaak HQ, the first thing I noticed was how cute it was! Huda designed it with a New York loft in mind, and while I can definitely see that (with the concrete floors, ceiling lights and floor-to-ceiling lights), there is an unmistakable girlie undertone. It's such a cool place to be, it's really chilled so you feel totally at ease to just hang out and browse.
Huda has been designing these magnificent abayas for three years now. Her last collection was quite edgy, with strong shoulder pads and lots of spikes, so she wanted her latest collection to be a little softer and more girlie, but still with a bit of edge as evidenced in the asymmetrical hems of the abayas.
When I asked her about the one celebrtiy she'd love to see in Malaak, Huda didn't even hesitate. "Daphne Guinness. She is fashion. Daphne Guinness is art". Which kind of explains the kind of customer drawn to Malaak. Huda describes the Malaak girls as "kind of edgy, they know fashion and they wanna make a statement."
Some of the stunning Malaak abayas
And what about my faves, the turbans? Huda started using turbans when she first started designing. She was inspired by Erykah Badu and the way she always wore big ones. Huda feels that turbans work really well with abayas because they show off the piece really well. Since they've always been a staple in her collections, she decided to create her own range. It took her about six months to perfect her turbans because she wanted to make sure they had lots of volume, rather than the flat ones out there.
How cool is this turban? Huda says they're perfect for covering up a bad hair day, in style!
Which explains why her pieces are all made by hand and so detailed. Each of the abayas is handmade by Huda and her team. One of them takes seven and a half days just to sew on the sequins! She also prefers to custom make her abayas for her customers, explaining that she always wants to get the fit exactly right for each one.
In terms of the local fashion scene, Huda thinks it's really picking up. "Everyone is very fashion-focused, people are moving away from being brand-oriented and are bringing in their own signature taste and individuality. They're experimenting and bringing in Dubai's own unique look"
Huda modelling one of her gorgeous abayas. I just love the lace!
More abayas in the showroom
And of course, I had to ask her about beauty products!! Huda giggled and said "You're going to laugh at me! My favorite face cream is Nivea and i wear it all the time! Aishwarya rai uses it!" The funniest part was when the lovely Serene from Purple PR walks to her purse and pulls out a tub of Nivea as well! I'm definitely going to have to try it out properly and join the party, I feel like I'm missing out!
All of the lovely turbans! In the back are the blazers that Huda also designs.
You can find more information about Malaak from their website. But trust me, you will want them all!! The abayas range from Dhs2,800 to Dhs5,500 depending on the style. They're actually so pretty that I would wear them as a dress!