Here's a style guide to Fashion Forward's week of runway shows, panel discussions and after-parties.
Fashion in the limelight
Kicking off the first day in style is a 3pm garden party. Forget cucumber sandwiches and Earl Grey tea; this will be a thoroughly fashionable affair with Fashion Forward’s leading designers and local VIPs in attendance.
Pay a visit to The Garden throughout the week to see creative offerings from a bevy of accessory designers.
Key talks tomorrow include one titled The Rise of the Fashion Blogger: Print v Digital, held in association with the London College of Fashion.
As for the shows, don’t miss The Starch Foundation, Gisellablu, The Emperor 1688 and the much-loved, Dubai-based Filipino designer Ezra.
Finishing off the day’s events is a swanky private party at the Madinat Jumeirah’s Fort Island.
It’s early doors on day two, with a talk on How to Make it as a Fashion Journalist in the morning. After a quick break for brunch, visitors can make their way to the afternoon shows by Hema Kaul, Reem Al Kanhal and Dima Ayad.
At 6.30pm, Hall 4 is likely to be packed with visitors wanting to hear from the New York-based designer Nanette Lepore. Best known for her bold prints and gypsy-influenced womenswear, she’ll be speaking on the topic of manufacturing when it comes to crafting high fashion.
Dress to impress at 7pm for Glam Hour at the Fashion Café before catching the day’s closing trio of shows from Toujouri, Charbel Zoe and Sheikha Madiyah Al Sharqi of Fujairah.
With work finished, it’s time to play: everyone’s invited to the party on the venue’s terrace.
Day three is a big one, with a stellar line-up of panel discussions. Our pick of the bunch is hosted by Halston Heritage at 4pm and up for debate is how to innovatively mix the traditional and the modern. For those lucky enough to receive an invite, the talk will be swiftly followed by a Halston high tea at 5pm in the VIP lounge.
Of the shows you’ll want to see, there’s House of Fatam, Tahir Sultan, Kage, Dina JSR and the inimitable Essa.
Rounding off the day’s proceedings is – you’ve guessed it – another glamorous after-party on the terrace. If your name is not down, you’re not coming in, so be sure to bring your invite with you.
Day four should be an enlightening one with talks on topics ranging from creative entrepreneurship to fashion photography. There’s also unlikely to be a spare seat in the house when the new Dubai Design District is revealed at 2pm in Hall 4.
Aziz Humaid, Taller Marmo, Amira Haroon and Endemage will be sending their latest collections down the catwalk. Be sure not to miss the day’s closing shows by Zayan The Label and what promises to be a theatrical masterpiece by Furne One.
At 10pm it’s time for Dubai’s glitterati to kick up their heels and head to the terrace for the celebratory wrap party.
• To register for Fashion Forward Season 2 and for information about which shows are private and public, visit www.fashionforward.ae. On-site walks-ins and registration will incur a Dh50 charge per day. View our behind-the-scenes gallery of the catwalk action at www.thenational.ae/lifestyle