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Scam, kidnap by South African police

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Scam, kidnap by South African police

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.

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Bambah’s Ramadan 2019 edit is pastel perfection
Sun, 2019-05-26 14:18

DUBAI: Egyptian designer Maha Abdul Rasheed, founder of the fashion label Bambah, is showing off a summery new line this Ramadan.

The Ramadan 2019 collection is making waves this season with its laid back, pretty pastel take on the traditional kaftan.

Mint green color blocked stripes on cream and gold-flecked embellishments on lilac, the collection’s colors are light and refreshing.


Luxurious jacquard with gold-flecked floral detailing add sheen to largely pastel bases, while the ruffled sleeves on the Isabella Kaftan are a welcome structural update on the traditional flowing silhouette of the robe.

While florals and gilded materials litter the Ramadan 2019 collection, there are a few options that are fresher and more urban. Rasheed makes good use of thick stripes in a few of the available kaftans, offering up combinations in a sorbet-like color palette of peach, green and cream.

Modest, full coverage fabric, high necklines and long, wonderfully detailed sleeves mark the collection — making it ideal for the Holy Month, as well as for your sartorial needs this Eid Al-Fitr.


Prices range from $430 to $790, with many of the designs hovering around the $500 mark.

Rasheed initially opened Bambah as a stand-alone boutique in Dubai, selling a carefully curated selection of vintage pieces. While the concept of one-of-a-kind, pre-owned fashion was almost entirely new to the region at that time, Rasheed persevered, educating fashionable Emiratis about the kind of couture one can’t find in malls.

Vintage Valentino blazers and Dior dresses flew off the shelves and before long, the boutique became a hub for Dubai-based fashion influencers looking to add unique character to their wardrobes.


After noticing that her clients were drawn to the hyper-feminine princess skirts and sweet-heart necklines popular in the 1950s and 1960s, Rasheed began designing herself. In a few short years, the company has expanded widely, with a loyal, cross-continental client base.

Today, global A-listers known for their refined, high glam-style like Amal Clooney and Priyanka Chopra have donned Rasheed’s designs.

Main category: 
Diva Abaya freshens up the Gulf’s fashion stapleBrazilian fashion blogger Camila Coelho touches down in Marrakesh

Sun, 26 May 2019 11:23:58 +0000

‘Walk with a statement:’ The Nou Project announces new sneaker designs
Sat, 2019-05-25 13:06

DUBAI: Tucked away in Dubai’s artistic and cultural Alserkal Avenue, Saudi brand The Nou Project announced the latest re-design of its classic sneakers — the all-new ultra-low tops.

In a one-night only pop up in KAVE café, the brand’s founder, Nour Al-Tamimi, and co-designer, Basma Chidiac, announced the re-design that came in three new colorways: Grey, burgundy and navy.

“We want people to be able to walk with a statement,” Al-Tamimi told Arab News as she showed off her previous collections.

The pop up featured a 50 percent discount on all pairs, as well as two artists and a calligrapher available for buyers to customize any of the newly-bought sneakers. Tables topped with board games lined the space, while popcorn and cotton candy was also handed out­ to attendees.

With an environmental and sustainable mindset, the duo has invested heavily in the use of Micro Fiber material, which is also known as “Vegan Leather,” instead of actual leather. They are already known for their recycled rubber soles, a unique calling card for the edgy, homegrown brand.

Reported as the Kingdom’s first major sneaker brand, Al-Tamimi had no idea she would find such success when she started out.

“I had no idea this would become my life today,” Al-Tamimi said in a previous interview. “It’s exciting to be the first Saudi sneaker brand — that’s a milestone in itself.”

The Nou Project was launched with the aim to broaden the way art is consumed and support emerging artists by providing them with a platform to gain recognition — some of their sneakers feature striking and often thought-provoking artwork.

The new designs were created in collaboration with artists Nika Fontaine, Baron Von Fancy and Franz Klainsek who designed each pair with their unique style, ranging from street art to digital image manipulation and pop art.

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Sat, 25 May 2019 10:13:09 +0000

Startup of the Week: Coco Sabon’s natural skincare
Lojien Ben Gassem
Tue, 2019-05-21 00:36

RIYADH: The healing and relaxing powers of nature are at the heart of Coco Sabon’s philosophy.
Launched by Dr. Cynthia Mosher — an American living in Riyadh — the skincare firm is committed to sourcing high-quality, natural oriental ingredients that provide the skin with gentle care and nourishment.
“I launched Coco Sabon in November 2015 at Alfaisal University’s first bazaar,” she said.
Mosher, who completed a bachelor of science in natural health sciences, said she hoped to do something more than simply diagnose illnesses and prescribe treatments. She also wanted to have time for other important things and people, so now she is working as an educator, training a new generation of medical students.
She encourages people to make healthy choices when it comes to ingredients they use on their bodies.
“I fell in love with formulating and creating beautiful, natural skincare products. I continued my creative journey while pursuing my medical degree, which deepened my commitment to develop ‘do no harm’ skincare based on natural ingredients,” she said.
“Layered with my admiration of Arabian culture, the rich regional ingredients, and my passion for integrative medicine, I developed a deep sense of holistic self-care that guides my formulations. My love for the fragrances, natural remedies and skincare routines of the Middle East are the heart and soul of Coco Sabon.”
There is a growing demand for Coco Sabon products. “After years of requests from family and friends to make and sell my products, I tested the waters, so to speak. We sold out of everything that day.”
She added: “About six weeks later we were invited to participate at the Gathering in Al-Bujairi in January 2016. We had a crowd of customers nonstop for three days and again sold out of everything. It was a decisive weekend. Coco Sabon was born and we have not looked back since.”
Mosher’s family and friends offered encouragement, but one of her strongest supporters was her best friend, Audrey Wilkinson. She said: “Audrey was my supporter, helper and adviser. She now works with me, formulating and producing our candles, cremes and face care line.”
Coco Sabon’s customers are mostly Arab women aged between 20 and 40, “though we have many loyal fans that span different age groups and come from all over the world.”
The brand offers a wide range of products, including soap, bath bombs, scrubs, cremes, face and body oils, perfumes and candles.
“Everything is produced by hand in small batches here in Riyadh using natural, safe and organic ingredients, sourced locally wherever possible,” Mosher said.
Coco Sabon believes in supporting local businesses and in sourcing the best ingredients possible. The store also designs its packaging and hand packages, labels and wraps each item, selling through an online store (, Instagram, WhatsApp, and local popup shop events.
Mosher has also started offering workshops on making her products.
“Some might think that to be unwise because I could very well teach a future competitor,” she said. “Well, that’s true for the medical students I teach now. Should I withhold my knowledge for fear of them becoming better doctors and doing better? Of course not. The more knowledge we put out there, the better our society will be. The workshops also help build community.
“I connect with people who are curious, who want to learn how to create and how to make good choices for their health. I welcome workshop students young and older (my youngest so far was just 6 years old), and I encourage them to take what they learn and use it to improve their lives and that of others around them. If they make a business out of doing so, then good for them. We all have something to offer the world,” she said.
Mosher is happy that she created a job she loves. “Sometimes I miss practicing clinical medicine, but I remind myself that I am helping people make healthier choices for their bodies, their minds, their souls and the planet,” she said.
“That’s a special kind of medicine that I believe can help heal the world.”

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Mon, 20 May 2019 18:40:37 +0000

Diva Abaya freshens up the Gulf’s fashion staple
Mon, 2019-05-20 10:20

DUBAI: The traditional abaya has come a long way. What began as a simple black robe has transformed into a fashion category of a multitude of styles, cuts and colors. Even luxury brands have jumped on the bandwagon, with some high-end fashion houses launching abaya collections in recent years.


Moving closer to home, local and regional designers, brands and manufacturers are also demonstrating their sartorial prowess, giving birth to original, modest pieces that shy away from the norm. One of the brands really coming into its own is Diva Abaya Couture, a Dubai-based brand that is all about the abaya and its many variations. Having opened its first showroom in 2016, Diva Abaya — run by the entrepreneur Naren Shewaramani and his immediate family — now has six showrooms around the emirate.

The label has unveiled its Ramadan 2019 collection and it’s well worth a browse through. Featuring simple blacks to multicolored options, Diva Abaya’s edit combines luxury fabrics — nida, fursan, salona, crepe and others are used — with elegant, flattering cuts.


Simpler creations feature more traditional materials, such as chiffon, while the more luxurious, eveningwear-style abayas take on dantel, French lace and a whole host of color. There’s gold, antique copper, royal blue and silver to name a few.


Part of the Ramadan 2019 collection also sees a collaboration with Emirati designer Sara Mohammed. Known for her Moroccan jalabeya designs, Mohammed has created a number of evening pieces for Diva Abaya.


As expected, these abayas are not off-the-rack and the prices reflect that. Starting from around $327, they’re certainly not your everyday abaya, but if you’re looking for something for night and day — and you feel you could get a lot of use out of it — then it’s worth the investment in the long run. If you’re looking for a little something for Eid Al-Fitr, then look out for the ones embellished with glittering Swarovski crystals for a touch of sparkle.

Main category: 
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Mon, 20 May 2019 07:43:51 +0000

Cool down in Zayan Ghandour’s summer-ready kaftans
Sat, 2019-05-18 13:56

DUBAI: Dubai-based designer Zayan Ghandour is showing off her latest line at the Fashion Forward Dubai pop-up in Jeddah department store Rubaiyat this Ramadan.

Fashion Forward Dubai, which recently announced it will be back with another showcase of regional talent in October, unveiled plans to present a special collection by twelve regional designers in the department store last week.

The Stars Avenue mall pop-up store will be open until June 3, just in time for fashion-savvy shoppers to snap up a new ensemble for a Ramadan gathering or Eid Al-Fitr celebrations.

“Fashion Forward Dubai is thrilled to continue expanding our partnership with the prestigious Rubaiyat. Our first two editions have resulted in several success stories for our designers. We are confident that this momentum will continue as we tap into new talent and markets with our growing roster of fantastic designers,” Bong Guerrero, CEO of Fashion Forward Dubai, said in a released statement.

The line-up of up-and-coming, as well as established, regional designers will showcase their Ramadan and Spring/Summer 2019 apparel and accessory collections at the pop-up store.

One of those designers is Ghandour, who launched her own quirky, feminine brand, Zayan the Label, at Paris Fashion Week in 2011 and has now unveiled a Spring/Summer 2019 collection that is perfect for the month of Ramadan.

The summery collection features vibrant shades of red, pink and orange with fresh whites and baby blues.

With a mix of dresses, kaftans and two-piece ensembles, all the holiday-ready outfits are cool and billowing — which is essential as temperatures in the Gulf climb.

The Mina Kaftan is particularly delightful, with its pattern of printed berries and lemons on white. The kaftan features batwing sleeves with yellow scalloped edges and a V-shaped neckline.

A soft pink kaftan with emerald green racing stripes in 3-D beading, the Veronica Kaftan is ideal for a laid back iftar.

Ghandour’s contemporary ready-to wear line features signature hand-embroidered motifs and custom-illustrated prints, all of which are visible in her latest collection where detailed embroidery and colorful embellishments are visible on almost all the pieces.

Main category: 
Replace sharp suits with Hessa Falasi’s ‘power kaftan’ this RamadanMounay gives the kaftan a contemporary update

Sat, 18 May 2019 11:03:05 +0000