Meet One of the Fashion Trust Arabia Winners.
You don't say no to Tania Fares.
Her unwavering support of young talent recently manifested in a stellar awards ceremony in the metropolis of Doha, Qatar. Her inaugural Fashion Trust Arabia saw five categories – Ready to Wear, Couture, Accessories, Shoes and Jewellery – with competition from young brands from all over the MENA (Middle East North Africa) region.
I caught up with the winner of the Ready to Wear Category, Salim Azzam, who caught the judges' hearts and minds with his passionate mission to provide work for hundreds of women in the mountains of Lebanon, while encouraging the continuation of traditional embroidery techniques. And with a roster of judges who, for any fashion-loving human, might induce hyperventilation upon meeting,this was no mean feat.
How do you WOW judges like Victoria Beckham, Pier Paolo Piccoli, Alexander Wang and Nathalie Massanet?
Authenticity. That room wasn’t an easy one to walk into – but the more I let my passion surface, the more I found the judges were intrigued with what I was saying. I believe what WOWed them was that I spoke straight from my heart.
What's next for you and your collections?
To continue telling the stories. The next step will be the opening of the doors of the Salim Azzam atelier, which will be welcoming more talent and more production. I'm in the process of going through hundreds of applications from women who are eager to play a role in the continuity of this craft.
Why should one invest in a Salim Azzam shirt or dress?
I believe a woman – or man – should only purchase my pieces if it brings them happiness!