Model, actress, TV presenter, and fashion designer, Tamara al Gabbani is an embodiment of a twenty first century Renaissance woman. She reveals that she pays homage to ancient goddesses and their strength, power, and inherent femininity through the debut collection of her eponymous label, Tamara al Gabbani, featuring gorgeously hued, draped, and structured dresses.
Indeed, both the designer and her creations are odes to goddesses and Tamara’s signature accessory of a tiara truly puts the finishing touch in her quest to transform a woman wearing a Tamara al Gabbani dress into a goddess for the day.
Khaleejesque spoke to Tamara al Gabbani to find out more about her design and style influences…[See photos of the full collection at the bottom of the article]
You are truly a multi-faceted personality. What does creativity mean to you?
Creativity is the ability to explore worlds without restriction.
What is your opinion about style and being stylish?
Style is the capability of taking the mundane, unnoticeable, insane and even hateful into something inexplicably appealing.
Your bio mentions that you tapped into your mother's impeccable style when channeling your efforts to launch your clothing line. Could you please tell us more about that?
I had great influences, both my mother and my grandmother were involved in the fashion industry, owning boutiques and designing clothes. They were both incredibly stylish; therefore style came naturally and played a fundamental role in my upbringing. It was, in many ways, inevitable – an inherited inspiration.
What signature elements define the Tamara al Gabbani collection?
I believe that all women are goddesses. This is the source of my inspiration for the collection. Historically, the ancient goddesses were pillars of strength and power, but retained an air of femininity. I incorporated this into what I think the modern day goddess is; she is strong, independent but also graceful and chic. I wanted to accentuate the femininity and beauty of a woman without denying her magnificent strength and ability to persevere.
The gowns are in rich, super-luxe jewel tones. What role does color play in the collection?
Color represents life, confidence and happiness. I wanted the collection to fearlessly embody the power and energy of a woman.
There is a distinctly Grecian vibe to the dresses what with the soft draping and the flowing fabric. Whom do you see wearing a Tamara al Gabbani dress?
I made a decision to give the dresses names, each dress is named after women who I admire, respect or have inspired me. Three of these are famous women, Princess Diana, Queen Rania and Sherihan. It would be an absolute honor to have either Queen Rania or Sherihan wear my dresses one day.
Having said that however, my purpose is towards all women, to make my audience and clientele happy. To give them a moment where they feel uplifted and special. If I can make one woman feel like the goddess she is for even just one night, the honor is mine.
While the majority of the dresses in the collection have a regal, vintage feel to them, there are also some modern, edgy dresses and jumpsuits to be found as well. Do you work according to a vision specific to the collection while designing your dresses or do you also take into account the global seasonal trends?
The brand is an extension of my personality, which is a harmonious balance of both traditional refinement and cutting edge innovation. I wanted the brand to be honest, from the heart and showcase outfits designed according to my own taste. When it comes to my designs, I have a very clear vision of what the collection is going to be, I just see it, it’s hard to explain. It’s almost like a visual dream. I have a knack for predicting trends, so that just naturally infuses its way in.
The goddess head-dress adds a perfect finishing touch to the outfits and is quite a unique accessory. Could you share the story behind it?
What is a goddess without her crowning glory? Tiaras and crowns are symbols of regality, honor and legitimacy. My collection isn’t just about the clothes; it’s a belief system. The concept and ideology behind the brand are the foundation upon which the designs are made. This brand is my ode to women, reminding them of the pedestal they were created on and should so proudly stand on. I have a great respect for women in their giving roles as mothers, sisters, daughters, best friends, wives and nannies. The Tiaras are as necessary as the dresses. I almost cancelled the show when the Tiaras weren’t delivered on time, however with determination and help from Aramex they arrived just a few hours before the show!
When do you plan to launch the next collection? Are there any other plans for the brand that you would like to share with us?
The next collection will be ready next year, of which I am so excited! I recently designed a bra & pashmina which I donated for auction to raise funds for breast cancer. I have a strong humanitarian streak and feel a heartfelt duty to help, so I try to be involved as much as I can. I have also just finished creating the new accessories collection of which I am so pleased with and can’t wait to launch!
– Priyanka Sacheti
For more information on the designer, visit www.tamaraalgabbani.com