Slouchy and chic are no longer polar opposites on the style scale. Designers have combined the two to create a balanced look that is effortlessly chic – carefree and elegant at the same time. On the runway of Fashion Pakistan Week 2017 (FPW), designers, panjandrums and newcomers alike once again gave the look their stamp of approval with their unique iterations of the style.
Living legends just don’t go out of style. Frieha Altaf pulled it off with aplomb. It was definitely more orderly and why not – it was councils 10th anniversary celebration.  Choreography by Frieha, PR by Take II and organised by Karachi Fashion Council, the FPW was the trailer of what’s coming next – the retail revolution that will propel the business of fashion forward.
One always finds fashion weeks in Karachi more relaxing than the ones in Lahore. It’s the uncanny vibe of the place. Well, fashion has historically been a tale of two cities in Pakistan – Karachi and Lahore, and there has been intense competition between the two. From the glory days of the style mafia in Pakistan and the tension between the designers who supported either/or, fashion has clearly established two centres in Pakistan – one in Karachi, which has been historically, and the other in Lahore. Yes, Pakistani fashion began in Karachi and how they love to throw it in Lahore’s face. 
The Day 1 of FPW was a day of meagre highs and many lows. The skilled Ayesha Farook Hashwani opened the show with her La Plage collection, which was a deft display of bold embellishments, vibrant hues of sky, marine and sun. She was the only designer who lived up to her label’s puffery, since its always exciting making a comeback on the runway after years. If there’s one designer who went out celebrating the summer in this fashion season, it’s Ayesha, whose bold silk prints and myriad of cuts against bright hues screamed summer, rather than whispering softly like the pastel pieces by other designers on the ramp. From her cocktail dresses to pants and tunics, all popped with the interplay of vivid colour and design. 
Zaheer Abbass’s blue sari on Sana Javed was a treat – he added his candy eyes and aesthetics to the wardrobes, and kudus for it boy!
The other designer who outshined the fickle fashion business was Tooba Chottani. She’s Zainab Chottani’s kinswoman and it would seem the ingenuity with finesse runs in the family. A dash of the unexpected was added to every conventional sartorial style – sheer skirts underneath oversized cape jackets with a mix of prints, and surprising detailing created an otherworldly vision unlike other designers showcasing on Day 1.
And now the disappointment starts. Arsalan Iqbal’s collection offered hardly anything new in the tones of brown, black and grey. Humayun Alamgir featuring Ayaash with severe sequined and blingy brocade jackets were horrendous. 
Doing nothing for his clothes, nothing for the audience and nothing for the fashion week,  Nauman Arfeen’s collection was in the line for disappointment. With luxe being the order of the day, the weakest collection to look at on Day 1 of FPW was Nauman Arfeen. The outfits, while way better than most showed that day, just did not have “it”. Nauman Arfeen’s Wild Wild Vest was way out of time-space paradigm, his collection failed to come up to the bar he has set for himself. Our only guess is that as one of the members of FP, he was too busy with the week to get down to designing. 
Fashion weeks are an exhausting business for anyone involved enough to be working full time on them. Behind the plethora of pictures, red carpet razzmatazz and general all round brouhaha, is hours, days, months of work and a ton of blood, sweat and tears. 
The pioneers, fashion superstars, debut makers, luxury kings and queens and ready-to-wear gurus were all spot on on Day 2 of Fashion Pakistan Week 2017. This is what ideally every day at every fashion week should be like.
How exciting it is to witness a young gun backed up with a killer collection. Nida Azwer opened the day with all white, beige and grey ghararas, saris, dupatas and ajkans paired in the exquisite organza and silk featuring the traditional Sindhi embroideries of mirror work, bead work, rilli craft and Hurmich. It was a fabulously chic and clean collection by a designer who loves fashion. This is exactly what happens when a textile designer takes over the ramp. 
Under the British Council mentorship programme for local designers, Fashion DNA featured capsule collections by Zuria Dor, The Pink Tree Company, Jeem, Sonya Battla, Munib Nawaz and Gulabo.
Nazia Hassan’s song in the background outshined The Pink Tree Company’s collection of emerald, greens, sun kissed orange and the turquoise silks. 
The comfortable and smart off shoulder shirts and pants for women teamed with shorts and cargos by Sonya Batla were perfect to show where the fashion scene in Pakistan is heading to.  
The other fashion house that is all set to rock this season, like always, is Gulabo by Maheen Khan. Her statement signature and floral prints was a quintessential inspiration of the hippie movement of 60s and 70s. Maheen once again wowed with a proper ‘show’ in every sense of the word with a very impressive fashion week collection. The designer brought her feminine, quirky floral aesthetic to clothes that should fly off the shelves from her many stores. Easy slip dresses that could double as tunics, pants, crop tops, it was a winner!
From DNA showcase, well what we couldn’t understand was Munib Nawaz’s collection, those stitching out of place with gruesome fittings. Now only if he would get his act together and think finishing with attention to detail, he would be well on his way. 
Deepak Perwani, the rousing man of fashion, made a strong come-back after his previous Fix It collection with well-made clothes and a zany style aesthetic. With minimal embellishment, lace, crystals and shades of blue waters and morning sky, his dresses are to die for and the man knows how to create the most well-fitted pants. We loved the crazy ones on Mehreen Syed, teamed with a simple lace off shoulder top! The day belonged to Deepak Perwani for the blue suits he made his boys run with on the ramp, the colour of beech to the ramp via a series of delicious pieces. 
The Fashion Pakistan Council celebrated its 10 years in style with the most renowned fashion designers of Pakistan sharing the ramp, showcasing their masterpieces through an exclusive 10 year celebration grand finale featuring the collections by HSY, Bunto Kazmi, Sana Safinaz, Amir Adnan, Shamaeel Ansari, Umar Sayeed, Maheen Khan and Nomi Ansari. Although we’ve seen all the collections showcased at finale before at different fashion weeks but it, without much ado, was patently overwhelming to see the faces of Pakistan Fashion Industry together. There could not have been a better finale than this to the most fashionable day of Fashion Pakistan Week 2017.

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