Exclusive: Arwa Al Banawi teams up with Levi's for Sole DXB
You won't want to miss this
Dubai-based designer Arwa Al Banawi, who originates from Saudi Arabia, has found immense success since launching her label, The Suitable Woman, in 2015. And with good reason. Arwa creates cool, contemporary suiting, made to worn by the modern woman on the move as she conquers the world. Her designs are stylish with an inherent 'cool girl' appeal so it's no wonder that the designer was tapped by Levi's to create a limited edition collection of jackets which will debut at this weekend's Sole DXB event.
The collaboration sees Arwa put her own spin on the label's iconic trucker jacket, cleverly infusing her Saudi heritage with the brand's American heritage. Aptly titled, "A marriage of two cultures", the three jackets feature shoulder pads, a belt and are cut in an oversized silhouette. Each of the three designs is emblazoned with a different statement on the back: "I studied in the UAE", "I studied in Saudi Arabia" and "I studied in London".
On why she places so much emphasis on fusing her Middle Eastern heritage into her designs, Arwa exclusively tells Buro: "My home and where I come from has inspired me a lot. Saudi has a beautiful, rich heritage that I believe a lot of people don't know about. I feel I have an important role as a woman from Saudi to show that beautiful side of my country and in the Gulf in general. Saudi women have a cool, edgy fashion sense and their own taste in fashion. I see how they dress when they travel, mixing their identity with streetwear and I want to highlight their presence."
Another standout element of the jackets is the use of gold thread that is usually used on traditional bisht garments. "Growing up, I saw my father wearing the bisht on his way to big events and I was always mesmerised by the design of it. It's made by Saudi artists in Saudi and it's a beautiful garment. The gold threads in my jacket reflect the bisht, whilst the blue denim is true to Levi's American heritage."
Arwa will be at Sole DXB this weekend to customise the jackets for customers and the pieces will only be available until the event's end. For now... "We might have them after. We're still in talks with Levis' about that," Arwa shares with a smile.
Watch Arwa explain her design process and see the jackets in the video below...
Sole DXB is on this weekend from December 7, 2017 to December 9, 2017 at Dubai Design District. Check out Buro 24/7 Middle East's December culture guide for more events like Sole DXB happening this month.