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Scam, kidnap by South African police

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Saudi Arabia

Map, flag and data from Wikipedia.
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. SJ Dodgson MJoTA 2015 v9p0115

Saudi Arabia is the second largest Muslim country (Algeria is the largest). Its population of 27 million does very well if a citizen is one of the 7,000 princes who can do whatever they like, and less well if the citizen is a man, men can travel freely and divorce without reason but cannot say a syllable against the absolute monarch or sharia law; and horrible for women who are treated all their lives like children or useful beasts of burden.

The very look of a woman is offensive; in public they must be covered completely. So poisonous is a woman that if she is raped she must be executed, even if she is only 6 years old. Because the law insists it was her fault. Always.

Saudi Arabia gets away with massive human rights abuses because it is swimming in oil, and ridiculously wealthy, and a major buyer of weapons, which the United States falls over itself selling to totalitarian regimes.

The success of religionists in planting the idea that cold-blooded murder of little girls and bloggers is holy has been widely noted. Religionists in neighboring countries have convinced young unemployed men lacking skills that shooting cartoonists and Jews and Syrians and Nigerians is good. And Saudi Arabia responds by building walls around its country, to keep out the fighters they so happily groomed.
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News sources from Saudi Arabia all spew out stories about men and the greatness of the cruel despots who think nothing of lopping off body parts including heads. This news feed is about fashion, and I like it.

Latest Top (5) News

Celine Dion chooses Lebanese brand for album campaign
Sun, 2019-11-17 14:44

DUBAI: It’s no secret that Celine Dion reveres designers from the region. The Canadian crooner has sported looks from Middle Eastern talent on numerous occasions — who can forget that canary-colored Maison Rabih Kayrouz power suit she wore last year? So it hardly comes as a surprise that Dion donned earrings from Lebanese fine jewelry designer Ralph Masri on the campaign shots for her newly-released album, “Courage".

The singer who gave us “My Heart Will Go On” rocked the Phoenician Script Bolt Earrings with Diamonds in the album artwork in addition to a fold-out poster that comes tucked inside the CD.

The Canadian crooner rocked Ralph Masri's Phoenician Script Bolt Earrings with Diamonds. Supplied

“This is so special to me on so many levels. First, for the obvious reason that Celine Dion is an icon I’ve always loved and this is an incredible honor,” the Beirut-based jeweler told Vogue Arabia.

The Central Saint Martins graduate, who launched his eponymous label in 2014, is known for his sophisticated, statement pieces. His geometric designs have been worn by the likes of Queen Rania Al-Abdullah, Gigi Hadid and Nicki Minaj.

Those who wish to take a style cue from the pop superstar will be pleased to know that the diamond earrings are available at his newly-opened Beirut flagship store. 

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Sun, 17 Nov 2019 11:50:30 +0000

Bella Hadid gets candid about mental health struggles
Sun, 2019-11-17 11:20

DUBAI: Palestinian-Dutch model Bella Hadid recently opened up about her struggles with depression and the pressure of being a runway model as she spoke at the Vogue Fashion Festival in Paris on Nov. 15.

The 23-year-old revealed that there were days she would “cry every single morning” when her career first kicked off.

“I would cry during my lunch breaks, I would cry before I slept. I was very emotionally unstable for a while when I was working 14-hour days for four months straight as an 18-year-old. I think I just wanted to breathe a little bit. And so it kind of put me in a spiral,” she shared, as per WWD.

The California-bred beauty added “For a while I just didn’t want to talk about it, and I’ve gone through a lot in the past few years with my health. I feel guilty for being able to live this incredible life, have the opportunities that I do, but somehow still be depressed. It doesn’t make sense.”

Hadid, who has walked the Victoria’s Secret runway three times, also revealed that she had never felt comfortable until she walked for Rihanna’s Savage x Fenty show this September.  

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Sun, 17 Nov 2019 08:32:07 +0000

Arab designers take over Country, Latin music awards
Sat, 2019-11-16 13:32

DUBAI: Singers, supermodels and actors descended upon Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena last week for the 53rd annual Country Music Association Awards, wearing their best “giddy-ups.”However, it wasn’t all rustic denim and cowboy boots on the star-studded red carpet.  In fact, there was plenty drama and glamour to be seen courtesy of the Middle East’s seasoned and emerging design talent who were responsible for dressing a number of the well-heeled attendees, including “Bachelorette” star Hannah Brown.

The former Miss Alabama stepped out on the red carpet wearing an elaborate dress from Dubai-based, Omani couture label Atelier Zuhra. The white, dotted ball gown featured a mock-neck and a full A-line skirt that trailed into a billowing train.

An Arab designer also found a fan in certified hitmaker Pink, who hit the red carpet with her husband Carey Hart and their two kids, wearing a long, burnt-orange dress from Dubai-based label Zeena Zaki. The “So What” singer played into the country theme by pairing the ensemble with a black cowboy hat tipped to one side.

P!nk wears Dubai-based label Zeena Zaki at the 2019 Country Music Association Awards. Photo: Getty Images

Elsewhere, the evening’s host Carrie Underwood wowed in a floor-length, sequin-covered Elie Madi dress, which featured sheer paneling, gold embellishments and a long tulle train. Meanwhile, American singer Maren Morris accepted the Best Album of the Year award wearing a pastel blue top and matching billowing skirt designed by Saudi label Honayda.

The Country Music Association Awards almost fully honored and highlighted the women of country music — whose songs have been heavily dismissed on country radio over the years — until two words were uttered when they named its entertainer of the year: Garth Brooks.

Wednesday night’s show kicked off with a performance featuring country female acts across generations, included three female hosts and had Maren Morris as its top nominee. But in the final moments, Brooks won the top prize over Carrie Underwood, who many had hoped would be the first female to win entertainer of the year since 2011.

It wasn’t just the 2019 CMA’s where our regional talent was on full display. The red carpet at the 2019 Latin Grammy Awards was also awash with jaw-dropping ensembles plucked from the collections of Arab designers. Brazilian superstar Anitta turned heads wearing a Georges Hobeika crystal-embellished maxi skirt and a yellow crop top that featured a floor-trailing, oversized bow.

Roselyn Sanchez wears Nicolas Jebran at the 2019 Latin Grammy Awards. Photo: Getty Images

Puerto Rican singer Roselyn Sanchez, who picked up four awards for her album “El Mal Querer” also opted for a design by a Lebanese couturier, donning a multi-colored sequin gown with a thigh high slit by Nicolas Jebran.

Another memorable red carpet dress powered by a Beirut-based designer was the bright red Jean-Louis Sabaji gown donned by Mexican superstar Thalia for the 20th edition of the annual award show. 


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Sat, 16 Nov 2019 10:41:10 +0000

Dubai-based label keeps ‘Frozen 2’ star warm in NYC
Wed, 2019-11-13 13:40

DUBAI: Kristen Bell is currently in the midst of a whirlwind promotion tour for her forthcoming film, “Frozen 2,” and has been serving look after look while doing so.

On Tuesday, the US actress was all smiles while she was out and about in New York for her press rounds wearing not one, but three chic ensembles. Among them was a two-tone coat from Dubai-based Algerian designer Bouguessa. 

Bell began her jam-packed day with an appearance at “Good Morning America” and for the occasion wore a bold, half-baby-blue-half-plum jacket that was plucked from the label’s Fall 2020 winter collection. She accessorized the outerwear, which has also been sported by reality star Kourtney Kardashian in recent weeks, with knee-length, crocodile-skin boots and oversized sunglasses. 

The actress wore a coat by Dubai-based label Bouguessa for a TV appearance in New York. Getty Images

The 39-year-old then switched into a burgundy trench coat paired with a coordinating sweater and stiletto boots. Meanwhile, the Broadway star was photographed sauntering out of “Good Morning America” (GMA)wearing a head-to-toe maroon look and a lilac coat slung over her shoulders.

During her appearance at GMA with co-star Idina Menzel, Bell and her on-screen sister shared some details about the hotly-anticipated “Frozen 2.” The actresses, who play Anna and Elsa in the cult Disney film, revealed that they felt they were in “really good hands” for the Disney’s first-ever musical sequel. 

Bell also spoke about a new show she is producing and hosting for Disney+. Entitled “Encore!”, the new series will invite former High School Musical castmates to perform their original musical in just six days. 

“It’s incredible, and I will say I’ve been proud of a lot of work I’ve done — I don’t know that I’ve done anything that makes me this proud,” Bell said, adding that it’s, “so heartfelt.”

Meanwhile, Bouguessa, which was founded by Faiza Bouguessa, is known for its modern abayas and stylish overlays.   The Dubai-based label has found fans in many A-list celebrities, including Indian actresses Priyanka Chopra and Sonam Kapoor. And who can forget the emerald, velvet robe Beyonce donned back in 2017? 

Born and raised in France to Algerian parents, the designer initially moved to Dubai as a flight attendant for Emirates before transforming her passion for fashion design from a hobby and to a full-fledged career. Having learnt to sew and knit from her seamstress grandmother at a young age, Bouguessa lent her skills to numerous internships at fashion houses before launching her eponymous ready-to-wear label in 2014.

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Wed, 13 Nov 2019 10:45:40 +0000

Jameela Jamil is on a hot red carpet streak in New York
Tue, 2019-11-12 10:49

DUBAI: British actress Jameela Jamil is on a hot red carpet streak. The 33-year-old attended the 2019 Glamour Women of the Year Awards on Monday night at New York’s Alice Tully Hall and demanded a double take, wearing an electric orange sequined mini-dress from Balmain.

The design evoked a classic skirt suit and featured a cropped jacket with padded shoulders and black lapels and cuffs. The top was worn with a matching miniskirt that was connected by way of a black corset-like attachment at the waist.

The body positive activist, who founded the “I Weigh” movement in 2018, completed the look with sheer, patterned stockings and black stilettos. When it came to her makeup, Jamil opted for a dramatic slick of winged eyeliner that extended beyond her temples and a swipe of red lipstick. Meanwhile, her jet black lengths were raked back, further emphasizing her show-stealing makeup.

Monday night’s look was just the latest in a string of show-stopping red carpet appearances. Just this weekend, the “Good Place” actress, who was born to a Pakistani mother and an Indian father in London, was photographed with her longtime partner, British musician James Blake, at the 2019 Glamour Women of the Year Summit in New York. She wore a long, oversized shirt dress that featured a sash-like leather panel and was plucked from Milan-based label Gabriele Colangelo’s Spring 2020 ready-to-wear collection, which she accessorized with coordinating white pumps. The British beauty exuded effortless charm.

Before that, at the 2019 CFDA/Vogue Fashion Awards on Nov. 4, Jamil was a vision in a neon yellow, satin, charmeuse and pleated poplin ensemble designed by Christopher John Rogers. Proving that there’s no such thing as too much neon, the British-born bombshell paired the traffic-stopping design with a set of fluorescent pumps and a matching purse —”No cars hit me last night!” she jokingly wrote on Twitter.

She took the monochromatic look to the next level with a coordinating eye moment — she revealed that she did her own makeup — that comprised of a swoop of yellow liner and several coats of green mascara applied liberally to her upper and lower lashes. 

The star founded the “I Weigh” movement in 2018 by launching an Instagram account where she shares inspiring images sent in by followers detailing their accomplishments and positive characteristics, rather than what they weigh.

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Lebanese fashion designer lands first regional show in DubaiSaudi fashion house Sadeem hits the runway in Dubai

Tue, 12 Nov 2019 07:58:09 +0000