Just before I left to Paris 6 weeks ago, Grazia Magazine supplied me amongst few other designers with a straight forward Little Black Dress from H&M worth 49 Dhs (13 USD) to transform for under 100 Dhs (27 USD) worth of materials.
I love changing existing designs. Since I was young, I used to get basic garments such as a denim pair of jeans and have it altered to fit me and my out of proportion hips. I also love playing around with my dresses, adding trims to them and maneuvering their lengths.
I had about 1 week to get the work done just before I left and get the photoshoot done with me wearing the dress.
I split my my thinking into 3:
- What suits Aiisha’s rounded figure
- Material used has to be under 100 Dhs (27 USD)
- The work I’ll propose shouldn’t take more than 5 days.
I hated the neckline of the given black dress. It was rounded in a funny way where it was neither revealing nor high and elegant, so I changed it. I added some tulle flowers with pearls and black crystals from SWAROVSKI ELEMENTS to accentuate my shoulders. Finally, I draped a piece of black jersey around the lower hips in order to make my waist appear smaller. I kept it short from the front to show more of my Manolo’s. I generally went for the rock chic appeal and it rocked!
Before and After…
The Little Black Dress BEFORE and AFTER..
Front and Back after makeover
My days were crazy as I was on my way to attending the Paris Fashion Week and my entire schedule for the past few weeks was jammed. My makeup prior the photoshoot took literally 20 minutes and my hair took a similar time and looked so beautiful and fresh. I used my Braun Satin Hair 7 Airstyler with IONTEC. You remember my Braun brush with the IONTEC technology? It’s basically my every day brush to make my hair healthier. Braun answered my prayers and made a styling brush with the same technology.
It releases heat in a gentle way. Whereas in most of the salons, I have to constantly ask the hair stylist to keep the blow dryer away from my hair as it kills it. On the other hand, my new favorite Braun gadget provides me style and care at home in less than half an hour!
Here’s Grazia photoshoot results:
LBD project by Grazia Magazine ME 1
LBD project by Grazia Magazine ME 2
Thank you Grazia for the beautiful shoot (especially Elaine Greenshields) & thank you Braun for taking care of my hair!
On a separate note, I’ve been thinking for a very long time to dedicate part of a my blog for the dress makeover project where you may send me your used or, preferably, new clothes along with your budget to change them for you. The changes may be major or minor.
Its still an idea as I’m very busy and my atelier is usually over swamped. Having said that, I’d like to give it a try. So feel free to contact me anytime you’d like to experiment with your clothes.
As you know, we’ve had one of the finest collaborations with the living legend Manolo Blahnik during our previous collection, Love Affair. Needless to say that posing next to Manolo was a moment to cherish as I made sure I scanned him from his bow tie down to his fuchsia shoes. As I always tell the sales person at any shoe boutique- I have no need of a particular shoe color or style. I have a need of a shoe. Period.
So among few other styles I got, specifically 1 crazy green ruffled Toubid pair, came home with me a pair of the most famous Hangisi blue jeweled Manolos that Mr. Big used to propose to Carrie in Sex and the City and I made sure that the legend himself signs on their sole.
Manolo Blahnik Hangisi
Manolo Blahnik autographing on Aiisha's Hangisi
A pair of Toubid MB to kill for!
Recently, I looked into my shoe closet and thought to myself “I’d really like to see some colorful pair where my eyes would almost hurt!”. So I hit Bloomingdales and found some elegant ones by different brands. Plain elegant wasn’t quite what I was looking for.
The moment I stepped into the Manolo Blahnik boutique in Dubai Mall, I was captivated by one specific pair from the latest season.. The photos won’t give it justice and no words can express the powerful combination of the Blue, Fuchsia and Orange on my tanned legs with a hot red pedicure.
Manolo Blahnik Petasap
Then my heart started pounding a little more as I walked by the Golden/Black pair that Victoria Casal and I wore during our photo shoot with Manolo Blahnik. They’re called Innamor and they had to be mine. The only way to describe this pair is “Mysterious”. They’re elegant, sexy and they seem to be in love.. constantly.
The girls in the Innamors
Manolo Blahnik Innamor
Its worth mentioning that at Manolo Blahnik Dubai Mall, you only get 1 piece of each size. I mean seriously! This is why I make sure that my feet sized 36/ 36.5 get their pairs picked even before they land in Dubai.
Some of the below collection will be showcased in the latest movie Sex and the City and will be launched in Manolo Blahnik Dubai Mall in July.
Manolo Blahnik Denzi
Manolo Blahnik Lezza
Manolo Blahnik Delaya
Manolo Blahnik Amacha
All will be launched and much more soon at the Manolo Blahnik boutique in Dubai Mall..
This by far is the longest post that this site has so far, and its there to thank every individual who has provided us with support and has been a part of this great success. So I list them at no particular order.
A Love Affair
Stefan Cebula, an amazing human being. You look at him and you realize that everything will be alright. Building the stage on ice, hanging himself from the rooftop, taking care of every (production) aspect was never an easy job. Stef has produced Valentino shows and The World Summit in Johannesburg among many others. He is the best!
Among many others, Vartan Kelechian was a true positive vibe for me. Everytime I felt the world crashing around me, he assured me it will all be fine and it was!
Jihad Mawed is the man behind my logo. I paid 5 companies for a proper logo and I ended up using none. Instead I used the one from my childhood friend. He’s a true artist and a very dear brother. Along with my husband, Jihad also designed the Love Affair backdrop, which I think was sensational
A Love Affair Backdrop
Liz Berry, What can you say about a (Super Lady) who has produced the lights for London Fashion Week and Robbie Williams concerts? She’s a Super Lady!!
Carole B, Hana Nitsche, Alexandra, Zeljka, Cole, Ying, Maja and Sophia from Bareface, Kate and Nicole from LMM, Dima, Anastasia, Katryna, Katsyarina, Rene and Anna. Everybody spoke of their beauty and grace. They really made me proud and were gorgeous! Unlike other models, they were all lovely, patient and simply professional.
A powerful opera singer who’s full of passion and has previously opened at Twickenham for 80,000 people. He was sensational!
Andrew Amdur (Tenor)
Natasha Alexandra Kemball
A graceful figure skater, who started the evening off with twirls and elegant moves, using the soaring voice of Opera Singer – Andrew Amdur for inspiration. It was so passionate and truly brought me tears.
Natasha Alexandra Kemball
All the photographers stood side by side to document every breath we took, every move the models took and every shine of Victoria Casal pieces. Joseph Bassil was their leader and his photos speak for themselves.
All 4 Media. These guys got me speechless everytime I saw them around me either filming or solving a problem or simply reassuring us that everything is gonna be alright. They were true soldiers. The filming was conducted in HD and transfered on the massive 20meter x 10meter screen at Dubai Mall. Thank you, Roland, Raymond and all the incredible staff.
Thanks to my incredible husband, we truly brought Paris to Dubai for the night. The mix was sensational.. I listen to it almost everyday and never get enough of it – Because we truly worked on it from our hearts. Please visit the links to taste the music.
What an pleasure to have met this legend. With his beautiful fuchsia shoes, both Victoria and myself were honored and so glad to have met Manolo. The 3 of us shared 2 photoshoots (exclusive for Harper’s Bazaar and Zahrat Al Khaleej magazines). It’s great as it makes the lady wearing Manolo’s feel like a princess, but also meeting the lovely legend behind it, is thrilling. Truly, to have Victoria and Manolo on my sides was a dream I never thought would come true!
Manolo Blahnik, Victoria Casal and Aiisha
Our stylist Noni, a passionate lady so eager to become a professional stylist, I tell her thank you for your dedication and your precision. I couldn’t have done it without you.
The models looked like they went out of the 60’s Vogue (I quote from the Khaleej Times). Steve from Pace e Luce Al Manzel – Burj Dubai Downtown – made me and Victoria look like 60’s divas for our clip. We simply looked sexy. Put the same look on the naturally perfect models and tell me what you think! The entire team of Pace e Luce blew us away by their work.. Thank you guys! If you know great hair professionals, Pace e Luce will always be on the top of your list!
When it comes to Max Factor (part of Procter & Gamble), I can’t help but think: Family. P&G and their PR company MS&L have supported me from my early beginnings and we remain loyal to each other. Not only are they professionals, but also friendly and easy going. When it comes to mastering Max Factor, Samira Olfat is my favorite makeup artist. She has worked with the best companies and designers from Galliano to Christian Lacroix to Aiisha and Victoria Casal! Max Factor had their iconic Lipfinity in its 6 shades worn to stay on the lips. I don’t know of any woman who has tried them and not felt grateful for this invention..
As you know, I’m the spokesperson for the HP Fashion Products, including the Vivienne Tam netbook. To continue what we have started, HP supported us with their latest pink edition, which simply happens to be divine!!
Another supporter from Procter & Gamble. Camay, the luxurious soap brand, has 5 exquisite variants for every woman: Dejour, Crème Delice, Passion, Parfum, and Pink. I have designed 5 dresses that reflect each of the Camay 5 scents. Each of them appeals to a mood / character that every woman may embrace. In each character, I see myself. We’ll cover that soon in a different post.
Did you know that Sweet Stuff made a special Aiisha and Love Affair Cup Cake editions for the fashion show? Not only that, but these cup cakes are being sold in their store on Jumeirah for a month after the show. I’m really flattered!
Sweet Stuff / Aiisha Cupcakes
Its a true honor to have had Graziella as our MC. Graziella and I have worked on Dubai TV for a fashion styling program. I was always fond of Graziella’s ocean of talent. She was a sense of fashion that this region needs to nourish from. She’s multi-lingual and its simply sexy.. And she’s smart. Did I forget to mention how beautiful she really is? Hard luck for the men out there, she’s taken by a wonderful Ralph!
I understand how important it is to keep the blog up to date, specially after such a monumental event in my life, but I really have no time to update this blog followers with the event details, so I left the scoop for other bloggers (which I sincerely thank from my heart). But that doesn’t mean I won’t be updating my blog with the event photos and video, but all is good in due time.
La Dame a la Tour Eiffel
The purpose of this entry is to announce that all the “Love Affair” collection is displayed at Galeries Lafayette in Dubai Mall.
At the main entrance of Galeries Lafayette Dubai Mall
At first we had the opportunity to display the collection for 10 days, which after an overwhelming reception, this extended till end of November.
Please, come and have a look at the collection first hand, it is on display at the main entrance on the 2nd floor.
Aiisha on Display
I will be at Galeries Lafayette this weekend (Friday and Saturday), come and say Hi.
A day to remember in my calendar of events. We’ve been busy planning for this date for over 5 months (if not more), for few days prior to that date we hardly slept, we worked over night, but the more challenge we faced, the more we developed collective determination until we reached the deadline and from there it was smooth sailing.
Of course I’m talking about my collaboration with Victoria Casal.
A Love Affair Invite
A Love Affair is a collaboration 1 year in the making, kept under wraps until it was unveiled in a glamorous, unique, one of a kind show that was deemed the fashion show of the year and the golden ticket of the fashion events in Dubai.
The Design Team on the Catwalk
My coverage for this event will extend to few blog posts detailing all aspects of the show, the designs and everything related.