Culture Weekly

Fashion for all seasons

March 17- March 23, 2021
Gulf Weekly Fashion for all seasons

Gulf Weekly Mai Al Khatib-Camille
By Mai Al Khatib-Camille

Bahraini fashion designer Haya Khalifa has launched a capsule collection inspired by the kingdom’s architecture, art and culture, writes Mai Al-Khatib-Camille.

The 29-year-old from Riffa, who tends to draw inspiration for her designs through her travels, used her experiences in Bahrain to motivate her latest line which is seasonless.

“As I’m committed to sustainability and slow fashion, I decided to go seasonless and design clothes that are timeless and can be worn all year round,” explained the creative director of fashion brand Naseem AlAndalos and founder of Nesma Studio.

“Spending the past year in Bahrain gave me a new appreciation of my home country. I fell in love with the island all over again. I fell in love with our architecture, art and craftsmanship and I called the collection ‘Sadaf’, which means seashells, to pay homage to Bahrain’s famous pearl trade.”

Using silk and linen as the main fabrics with faux leather and neoprene for accents, Haya designed around 30 pieces of Abayas, dresses, tops, pants and skirts that can be styled together to create versatile looks.

“In an effort to reduce waste, I made the pieces in one-size only and it’s made to order instead of ready to wear,” she added.

“I just want to create long lasting pieces that women appreciate and wear for a long time.”

The colour palette is minimal, focusing on neutral colors found in Bahrain’s architecture such as grey, white and brown, and the classic black and navy for abayas

“It’s completely different than my previous collection which was colourful,” said Haya, who initially studied architecture in the University of Bahrain before following her passion and pursuing a degree in fashion from the Royal University for Women.

“This is more classical and I love that the photoshoot was conducted in the old neighborhoods of Muharraq around the heritage site of the Pearling Path.”

Haya is currently working on another collection that she will launch closer to the summer season that will differ from this collection.

Meanwhile, she works on Naseem AlAndalos and Nesma Studio with her mum Nabila Alaissaoui. Those brands boast luxury Moroccan caftans and ‘slow fashion’ involved in the use of eco-friendly materials with the goal of preserving crafts and the environment.

Haya is also the founder of Swatch of Style, a brand in which fabrics and excess material are being upcycled into pretty pieces that aim to add a touch of pizazz to any outfit.

For details on the collection, visit or follow @naseemalandalos or @nesmastudio on Instagram.

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