A Lebanese folklore theme,"women of the orient," informed a collection of student-made women's wear comprising oversized harem pants, loose and tasseled abaya, scarves and other zaffe-appropriate dress. Press, dignitaries and the bright lights of a professional runway gave a handful of second- and third-year students their first taste of fashion's glittery pomp.
Now household names, Lebanese designers like Saab,
Lebanese-made gowns on
As the deficit of fashion education is filled by bachelor's programs, so grows the competition among them; something to look forward to, said
"I hope to see more universities offering the major. The more people who are exposed to this major, the more they will understand that this is a fully fledged program. There will be better competition and we [will] feel motivated to work better and distinguish ourselves," said Habbal, who works as one of the main instructors for the fashion program in addition to leading the parent department.
The growth of academic fashion programs will also help battle a social stigma that undervalues the profession as a practical career path, a misconception challenging LAU and AUST administrators.
"This is our culture. When I started, we had to convince people about graphic design. For Lebanese, they thought that drawing might not provide them a good life later on. Now people think that a fashion designer is someone that only sews. They do not know that there is a whole design process."
Till today, most of
The creation of fashion BAs has also strengthened the relationship between local universities and peer institutions abroad as local programs seek international accreditation. AUST, for example, collaborated with the fashion program at Polytechnico di
Her talent was showcased along with six other students' Monday night as part of AUST's show. The first student enrolled at AUST's fashion program, Braidy offered one of the most sophisticated interpretations of the folklore theme, with a wool abaya-like cloak in cobalt blue and black detail inspired by the classic ironwork on
"This is the theme: tradition with a modern twist."
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