For a series of decades, millions of humans put the land behind them for a chance to gaze at them. Their interlaced colours and animated beauty makes them a natural miracle that cannot be rivalled. While many activists are focused on creating global awareness regarding their wellness, artists are often tempted to capture their breath-taking charm.
Coral reefs are one of the main reasons the Red Sea is an international attraction that welcomes millions of divers and submarines on an annual basis. Their intricate ecosystem is both scientifically and artistically mesmerising for a diverse audience of loyal fans. Therefore, it was no surprise for a local designer to create an ode to this natural gem.
Mariam Magdy Abdelghany was attracted to the colourful haven. Therefore, she decided to dedicate her SS19 collection to capture the vibrant colours and diverse textures of the underwater world. Mamzi’s latest collection is certainly a love letter written by Abdelghany and addressed to a vivacious universe.
Utilising a diversity of fabrics, the designer managed to mimic the miniature details of the coral reefs. From lace to fishnet, the Hues collection offers a contemporary interpretation of the theme. Meanwhile, she also did not shy away from depending on strong colours such as coral and turquoise.
Keeping that in mind, Abdelghany’s tale of faraway kingdom submerged with water was peppered with casual silhouettes, which promise an outgoing and relaxed summer season. The Hues collection includes everything from wrapped tops to flare pants. Ultimately, it embraces all of the season’s top trends.
The designer, who has always enjoyed watching her mother tailor her childhood dresses, uses her homegrown fashion brand, Mamzi, to reflect her talent and spontaneous sources of inspiration. Abdelghany, who originally studied mass communication and art, has always nurtured a strong bond with fashion; even long before acquiring a diploma in women’s wear from The Italian Fashion Academy and deciding to pursue fashion as a professional career.
Daily News Egypt interviewed Abdelghany over her latest collection and what she plans to do next, the transcript for which is below, lightly edited for clarity:
What encouraged you to take the coral reefs as your source of inspiration?
My decision to use coral reefs as the theme behind the summer collection stemmed from my desire to incorporate colours from nature. I wanted to use a wide array of vibrant hues, which can only be found in underwater ecosystems.
When I decided to mix zig-zag patterns with fishnet to create beachwear items, the theme made all the sense as a result.
What messages did you aim to communicate through this collection?
I wanted the focus of this collection to be recognising that colour schemes inspired from nature are often the most beautiful, in this case coral reefs in particular.
Whom did you target with this collection?
My target for this collection is once again the loyal Mamzi clientele. Through my designs, I always try to attract women who are looking for something original that will make them stand out amid the crowd.
I have no linear process when pinpointing my sources of inspiration. I often find myself starting on one project, and in the middle, I come across something that would make me completely change direction. I believe in adapting and being flexible, because this can open up a whole world of ideas and potentially lead you to a better collection.
What materials did you use for this collection?
I generally try to rely on local materials as much as I can, and they are used in much of my pieces. In this collection specifically, I used a combination of local and imported materials. Sometimes this is the case when the material availability doesn’t coincide with the demands of a collection.
What were the biggest challenges that you faced in creating this collection?
When creating a new collection, the process from start to finish is always challenging for the designer. You start with an idea, which you then take to paper, and eventually turn into a product; which is the most gratifying feeling.
Along the way, there are always unexpected complications, and because a designer has to rely on other people to execute their designs sometimes, those complications can be magnified. You have to stay positive and trust the process and that is when you really achieve great results.
How would you define your brand?
Being original and offering unique pieces has always been at the forefront of my goals for Mamzi. A lot of young women are looking for different pieces, as opposed to the trends big retailers adopt, then drop, almost at the exact same time. I always try to look for sources of inspiration that would set my products apart from most designers, and let my customers stand out.
How does this collection reflect a new phase in the brand’s timeline?
This collection has the potential to put Mamzi in an entirely new direction. This is by far Mamzi’s biggest collection in terms of designs and variety.
What are your future plans?
Fashion is a highly competitive industry and Egyptian designers have only started to be active in recent years. My dream is to export my products abroad, along with other designers in Egypt. We have extremely talented designers, and although it is a long and difficult route, I believe that one day seeing a label that says “Made in Egypt”, will be common everywhere in the world.