Highlighting the MENA region’s most promising young fashion designers is at the core of FTA’s mission. Here are the four debut talents chosen as finalist by FTA’s Advisory Board for 2021.
AbdelGader El Tayeb Al Sadig, founder of El Tayeb Nation, hails from Sudan. The young designer describes his womenswear brand as “intemporal” and a cross between “couture and easy-to-wear” that’s intended to empower the wearer. Made in Sudan and reflecting both the history of the great African country and its contemporary identity, El Tayeb Nation offers varied looks in bright colors, enhanced with glittering jewels and intricate embroidery.
Of Iraqi origin and now based in Jordan, Malik Thomas Jalil Kydd created a gender-neutral label focused on screen printing. His engaging and highly artistic designs are part of the slow fashion movement, with each piece carefully and delicately produced in a sustainable manner. In addition, to ensure that the Malik Thomas Studio label remains anchored in the Arab world, Malik manufactures buttons and all other finishes within the MENA region.
Egyptian fashion designer Mina Tahir’s eponymous label is a gracious bridge between East and West. Youthful, dynamic and ultra-contemporary, the Mina Tahir brand is first inspired by the MENA region’s subcultures, with references to traditional dress and local crafts, but also by the alternative hip-hop and skateboard cultures of the West. The use of digital technologies is readily apparent in the gorgeous graffiti art adorning Mina Tahir fashion pieces.
A recent graduate of Virginia Commonwealth University in Qatar, where she earned a BFA in fashion design, Roudha Al Mazroei possesses a great love of architecture and art. Having identified a gap in the market when it came to creative and more casual bridal wear, she launched her eponymous label, which focuses on contemporary, ready-to-wear bridal outfits and that reflects the designer’s love of storytelling and her rebellious nature.