Thanks to our resilience and our natural desire for survival, Lebanese fashion is a creative force, and represents hope and a potential future for the country. The goal should be to think of a new future for fashion in this country – and in the city of Beirut – as a marker for progressive ideas and solidarity; using and rethinking ideas and materials as part of a new economy and social model based on creative practices that will hopefully better suit the country’s current reality and the hope for something better to come.
With this year’s holiday season quickly approaching, visiting a physical retail outlet in the form of a holiday pop-up shop is the perfect way to support our regional creators, to engage shoppers and to promote small and local businesses.
From Paris to Geneva, passing by London, cities are braced for a whole slew of new Regional Christmas pop ups. These holiday pop-up shops are a way to build brand awareness, test new markets, and increase sales.
Eighty designers in Paris
Taking place in Paris on December 3rd and 4th is the bi-annual Pop-Up shop ‘Sawa Pop Up’, showcasing the work of eighty designers including fashion, accessories, home wear, art and photography.
The aim of ‘Sawa Pop Up’ is to promote and support Lebanese know-how, through the work of designers while collecting funds for Lebanese charities. At the core of Sawa Pop-Up are six Lebanese women living between Beirut and Paris: Camille, Talia, Loulwa, Katia, Tatiana and Manon. Seasonal demand plays a big role in the brands and products that are chosen; the first event takes place in the summer, and the second right before the Christmas holiday.
Every piece featured in some way highlights Lebanon’s cultural identity and local know-how – and the products also have the potential to appeal to French and international consumers. Some of the brands featured in this year’s Pop Up are, to name but a few, Creative Space Beirut, Sarah’s Bag, Kinda Afifi and Alexandra Rafie.
Geneva and London
Another Holiday Pop Up shop featuring Lebanese creatives is ‘L’appartement Geneve’ taking place in Geneva, on December 1st- 3rd. The event showcases brands including L’atelier Nawbar, Jessica K, Karma Salman, Bokja, Nour Hammour, Sandra Mansour and Elsa O.
This year, London hosted a Christmas Marketplace supporting the charity ‘Give a child a brighter future’, providing Lebanese children with lifesaving equipment, medicine and support and also showcasing Lebanese brands such as Steffy Gemayel, Sarah’s Bag, Karma Salman and Nour Hammour.
In times like these, it is important to “re-define values, and stimulate new approaches towards fashion economies and cultures as lived experiences”. These challenging times are seeing the creation of all sorts of social initiatives. Lebanese creatives, designers and entrepreneurs are working on rebuilding the system. Initiating new economic practices, alternative business models and developing a new set of values is vital if we’re going to establish a more equitable fashion industry.