12 June 2009

Nickie and Nina in Geneva

Lahore based designer duo Nickie and Nina recently showcased their latest collections in a fund raising event in Geneva, Switzerland. Organized in collaboration with the Swiss Pakistan Society, the event also featured a concert by Ali Zafar, who entertained the expatriate community with his hit songs as well as some Bollywood classics. Accompanying Nickie and Nina to the fashion showcase was a troupe of fashion models and event organizer Qasim Yar Tiwana.

The models walked out wearing four collections from the label - the Nur Jehan Collection, the Queen Rania Collection, the Signature Saris & Gowns - all of which were heavily embellished with traditional ornamentation on a rich colour palette. The fourth collection, the Black and White Collection, added a monochromatic visual change. These collections, according to the designers, would be available at their outlets within the next month.

Instep caught up with Nickie to talk about the fashion show, the Swiss experience and what the designer duo are upto next.

Instep: Tell us about the show in Geneva and the four collections you showcased there?

Nickie: All the collections were based on the different eras of the world and the look we put forward this time was different. The whole idea was to stick to our own heritage and bring about fusion of the west and the east in the usual Nickie and Nina way. The collections all consisted of similar elements despite being different. And as for the show, we were really excited and so was the audience.

Instep: The fashion show focused on traditional clothing- do you think the audience had an understanding of that?

Nickie: When we showcased in Geneva, people were surprised at how diverse Pakistani fashion is! The response was absolutely fabulous. We were approached by different nationalities - the French, South African, Chinese and Russian - they all loved our clothes and applauded at the end of it. But the best thing is that they bought the clothes because they suited anyone and everyone from different nationalities! From the verbal feedback to the calls we got, it was all great. And what was surprising was that we got calls way before the exhibition even started.

Instep: How different are the collections you design for the local versus the international market?

Nickie: Nickie and Nina always put forward what they are known for and that's what we will always continue. For the Geneva fashion show, we played with cuts and fabric but then again, all the outfits had the Nickie and Nina signature sign to them. We played with lots of colour like we always have. We showcased four collections but the look and style of all of them defined what Nickie and Nina are as designers. And we always keep that in mind.

Instep: Do you feel catering to the international clientele has changed the way you have been operating in the local markets?

Nickie: No it hasn't. It's quite similar, in fact. People who go for designer outfits expect good service, no matter where in the world. For any designer outfit, be it a local or an international designer, the market is the same worldwide. And since Nickie and Nina stick to their own style, we make sure we don't change the way we operate, no matter who we are catering to.

Instep: From the experience of dealing with foreign clients, how do international trends influence the Nickie and Nina designs?

Nickie: Trends for Nickie and Nina would change in terms of cuts and silhouette, but we don't make too many changes no matter where we are presenting. However, one has to keep the market in mind. For Pakistan, the weather is the most important as we live in the heat half the year. Light material in breezy colours is what we opt for in the hot summer, as that's what people are looking for.

Instep: Nickie and Nina have been a success locally. Do you feel you can reach the same demographic abroad?

Nickie: Yes, we can. Foreigners love wearing our tunics and dresses. We have a considerable market in America and we cater to nine different states there. We recently signed a contract with a high-end boutique in London, Baker Street. Our plans are expansion and expansion only! Nickie and Nina have to be international so our clothes can be easily available absolutely anywhere in the world.

Instep: Since Pakistani fashion is booming, where do you see the industry going? And where do you see yourself taking local fashion?

Nickie: Pakistani fashion wasn't doing so well in the past, but it has recovered. What people have to understand is that fashion is a multi billion industry and it shouldn't be taken as a form of entertainment or nothing more than glamour, though unfortunately that's what it has always come down to. Fashion taken seriously in Pakistan can help the economy shoot up and that's what the designers are doing. Our culture is rich. And as for Nickie and Nina, we see ourselves taking local fashion to the topmost level and the response we got from the Geneva fashion show is an example.

1 comment:

  1. Pakistan and Indian Fashion is the best in the world, the asian designers are doing such a great job all over the world. Even americans and english buy the best ethnic wear by Pakistan and Indian designers.