20 Lebanese Designers to Support Now and Forever

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Kehlani wearing Andrea Wazen x Nicolas Jebran custom | Photo: Courtesy of Andrea Wazen

I truly wish I was writing this piece under better circumstances; however, this is not reality, nor has it been reality for as long as I can remember. As such, today, tomorrow and every day moving forward, we are bound to do our part by amplifying Lebanese voices, online and offline. 

Even after the devastating explosion on August 4, 2020, and despite Lebanon’s ongoing political and economic unrest, Beirut remains a source of inspiration for many. Why? Because of its people. No matter what blows they suffer, the people of Beirut never stop inventing, innovating, and creating.

The location of the explosion had a particularly traumatic impact on the creative community of Beirut, being so near its most artistic districts, which were packed with boutiques, cafes, galleries, and ateliers. One of the ways to support Beirut creatives through this unprecedented crisis – apart from donating and continuing to amplify their voices – is to directly purchase from the emerging talent that form the backbone of the Lebanese fashion industry.

With this act, you will not only be supporting one of the most impacted industries in Beirut, but you are also bound to discover a unique piece designed by the incredibly talented designers below.

[Please note that some of the affected brands may not be operating right now.]

Salim Azzam

Azzam Salim White Shirt
Photo: Courtesy of @azzamsalim

Who: Designed by Salim Azzam

What: A ready-to-wear brand which preserves local folklore and traditions. This is done through exquisitely embroidered work by local craftswomen, where each piece tells what Azzam refers to as a ‘moveable story.’

Shop: Matches Fashion

Super Yaya

Super Yaya Pink Dress
Photo: Courtesy of @superyaya100

Who: Designed by Rim Beydoun 

What: A ready-to-wear brand meant to redefine preconceived ideas of African fashion. The brand draws influence from the exploration of cultural inheritance, nationalism, belonging and migration, while opting out of clichéd motifs. 

Shop: Super-Yaya.com

Jeux De Mains

JEUXDEMAINS_CAMPAIGN1_TAREKMOUKADDEM
Photo: Courtesy of @jeuxde.mains

Who: Designed by Salim Cherfane

What: A ready-to-wear brand that sees the world in pulsating colors. From loud patterns, to clean cuts, each year, the brand explores different themes creating versatile pieces that are graphic and playful.

Shop: Orders via Instagram

Roni Helou

Photo: Courtesy of @ronihelou

Who: Designed by Roni Helou

What: A forward-thinking and androgynous ready-to-wear brand where designs shed light on social and environmental issues. Roni Helou maintains a system through its eco-friendly and ethical practices, sourcing vintage and deadstock materials. The brand is currently participating in a fundraiser to help raise $800,000 for designers impacted by the Beirut explosions. 

ShopRoniHelou.com

Alexandra Hakim

Alexandra Hakim Jewlery
Photo: Courtesy of @alexandrahakim

Who: Designed by Alexandra Hakim 

WhatA sustainable jewelry brand that promotes zero-waste. The line repurposes materials and objects that would usually go to waste, such as tomato stems, matchsticks, and more. Meticulously made by hand, the brand creates striking, contemporary pieces of jewelry.

ShopAlexandraHakim.com

Diamondogs

Diamond Dogs
Photo: Courtesy of @diamondogsofficial

Who: Designed by Pascale Habis, Bashar Assaf, Nathalie Khoury, Stephanie Chachard, and Walid Akkad

What: A conscious luxury ready-to-wear brand, offering the woman of today a selection of glamorous and feminine pieces. The designs celebrate women of substance, individuality, and sophistication.

Shop: Diamondogs.com

Karma Salman

Karma Salman Rings
Photo: Courtesy of @karmasalman

Who: Designed by Karma Salman

What: A jewelry brand which visualizes its pieces as miniature sculptures. Inspired from the design and framework of Lebanese antiquity, the brand preserves the heritage of its country of origin, offering customers unique pieces that represent Salman’s intimate dedication to her craft.

Shop: Orders via Instagram

Yassmin Saleh

Yassmin Saleh
Photo: Courtesy of @yassminsaleh

Who: Designed by Yassmin Saleh

What: A ready-to-wear brand which often explores the themes of fighting complacent nature, while always carrying a message of hope. Each collection evokes conflicting emotions, as illustrated in the brands refined yet deconstructed garments. The ‘Tattoo ‘ series – which is a brand staple – is reimagined in each collection, displaying intricate drawings and meaningful symbology. 

Shop: YassminSaleh.com

Mira Hayek

Mira Hayek
Photo: Courtesy of @mirahayek

Who: Designed by Mira Hayek

What: A ready-to-wear brand dedicated to dynamic women who seek contemporary yet edgy styles. The transitional pieces are ideal for women who lead a bustling lifestyle. The brand is inspired by street art and vivid dreams, with designs that illustrate creativity with loose silhouettes, geometric patterns, and color blocking.

Shop: MiraHayek.com

Timi Hayek

Timi Hayek Campaign
Photo: Courtsey of @timihayek

Who: Designed by Timi Hayek

What: A brand deeply rooted in historical, mythological, and artistic research, highlighting the importance of preserving cultural heritage and the natural world. Prints are hand-drawn on delicate materials, which are individually hand-rolled and hand-stitched, creating imperfect yet beautiful scarves and dresses. 

Shop: TimiHayek.com

Andrea Wazen

Andrea Wazen Shoes
Photo: Courtesy of @andreawazen

Who: Designed by Andrea Wazen

What: A luxury footwear brand that offers high-quality handmade shoes for women, which are designed and produced in Beirut. Inspired by her mother’s 90s wardrobe, Wazen offers the modern woman a selection of versatile designs which lend themselves perfectly to every occasion.

Shop: AndreaWazen.com

Emergency Room Beirut

Emergency Room Beirut
Photo: Courtesy of @emergencyroombeirut

Who: Designed by Eric Mathieu Ritter

What: A gender-bending, sustainable, and ethical ready-to-wear brand that utilizes an alternative method of creating clothes. Emergency Room Beirut employs unique vintage materials and deadstock fabrics sourced from different towns across Lebanon to create one-off pieces. As such, the pieces are not only conscious and ethical, but unique.

Shop: EmergencyRoomBeirut.com

Rafa Homme

Rafa Homme
Photo: Courtesy of @rafa_homme

Who: Designed by Rafah Seoud

WhatA ready-to-wear brand dedicated to raising awareness toward a more conscious world, locally and globally. Rafa Homme’s collections tackle social and environmental issues through storytelling, while merging an aesthetic that facilitates the transition between menswear and womenswear.

ShopOrders via Instagram

Jessica Khoueiri-Achkar

Jessica Khoueiri-Achkar
Photo: Courtesy of @jessicakofficial

Who: Designed by Jessica Khoueiri-Achkar

What: A ready-to-wear womenswear label that reinterprets fashion paradoxes by creating accessible pieces fused with masculine and feminine elements. After sourcing the finest of fabrics, each collection offers pieces exuding confidence, femininity, and refined silhouettes.

Shop: Jessica-K.com

Donna Hourani

Donna Hourani Jewelry
Photo: Courtesy of @donnahouranijewelry

Who: Designed by Donna Hourani

What: A jewelry brand that specializes in honest and sustainable pieces. Hourani’s pieces are unique and narrate their own story. They are brought to life by skillful craftsmen after materials are ethically sourced by Hourani herself. The brand upholds high standards of environmental, social, and economical sustainability throughout its supply chain.

Shop: DonnaHourani.com

Vanina World

Vanina World Campaign
Photo: Courtesy of vanilla_world

Who: Designed by Tatiana Fayad and Joanne Hayek

What: A lifestyle label ranging from jewelry to apparel that celebrates femininity by offering bold products inspired by nature. Each piece is handcrafted in Lebanon, while engaging activism that promotes community development though craftsmanship and environmental awareness. 

Shop: Vanina.me

Sandra Mansour

00001-Sandra-Mansour-Spring-20-RTW
Photo: Courtesy of @sandramansour

Who: Designed by Sandra Mansour

What: A sustainable evening and ready-to-wear brand that creates artistically driven pieces with timeless silhouettes. The brand celebrates a blend of romantic yet bold creations, made from delicate fabrics with extreme attention to detail, as seen in its hand-and-thread embroidery techniques. Sandra Mansour is also the first Arab designer to partner with H&M for a fashion collaboration.

Shop: SandraMansour.com

Sara Melki

Sara-Melki
Photo: Courtesy of @saramelki

Who: Designed by Sara Melki

What: A ready-to-wear brand celebrating the soul of a nomad. Known for its style mixing and combination of ethnic influences, the brand illustrates a free-spirited aesthetic through its refined materials and graphic cuts. From couture-like details to accessible transitional pieces, Sara Melki offers the modern-day woman smart looks.

Shop: SaraMelki.com

Boyfriend the Brand

Boyfriend-The-Brand
Photo: Courtesy of @boyfriendthebrand

Who: Designed by Amine Jreissati

What: A ready-to-wear “gender invisible” brand, focused on minimalism and comfortable silhouettes. Boyfriend aims to highlight the importance of wardrobe staples through its minimal and high-quality pieces, which can be used as layering or transitional pieces.

Shop: Orders via Instagram

Hussein Bazaza

Hussein Bazaza
Photo: Courtesy of @bazaza

Who: Designed by Hussein Bazaza

What: A ready-to-wear brand which fuses storytelling with fashion. Hussein Bazaza focuses on evoking emotions through its garments to narrate a bigger story. Through the mix of colors, fabrics and textures, the brand combines couture-like details with ready-to-wear methods to create unique, standalone statement pieces.

Shop: HusseinBazaza.com

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