Khulood Khalaf, a fresh fashion design graduate from Bahrain’s Royal University of Women, has just created an exciting line of Jalabiyas for Ramadan. Drawing inspiration from local culture as well as Islamic motifs, Khulood designed her jalabiyas using traditional Bahraini embroidery techniques, Moroccan cuts, and Bahraini men’s bishts and thoubs.

When asked about the style of the jalabiyas she designs, Khulood says that she tries to capture a women’s essential feature – her waist; the dara’a’s are designed to be fit in the middle and loose all over. The colors she used for her collection coincide use what she describes as “traditional Islamic colors” such as blue, pink, gold, yellow, purple and black.  As for the fabrics she used for the collection, she used silk and chiffon, finalized with some netting.

Khulood, who has participated in a lot of fashion shows and events such as the Cultural Festival, the Gulf Designer Show, and of course charity functions, is very fascinated with jalabiyas. She was inspired to actually take this hobby a step further after she had to design a line of jalabiyas for a charity event. Finding that it was such an interesting and creative field she eventually started her own line.

Her latest pieces, which are a part of her Ramadan collection, were the result of research on Khulood’s part. She researched jalabiya styles of past generations, and gave her modern jalabiya line a vintage and historic feel to them by adorning them with antique pieces and embroidery styles.

During the design process, Khulood takes time in visiting fabric shops and gets a feel of each fabric before choosing the right one. She then uses Illustrator to imagine what the color will look like along with the style of the jalabiya. After all that’s done, she actually designs the jalabiyas and finally sends them to production.

With this line, Khulood hopes to target fashionable young women who enjoy wearing traditional yet lively jalabiyas that come in different styles of bold bright colors as well as decorative elements in cuts that enhance and celebrate the female form.

Each piece of Khulood’s collection is remarkable on its own, and allows one to envision the beautiful story sewn with each thread.

– Noor Al-Shaikh

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