Wedding Dress Saves Haute Couture Line in Coronavirus Times


          Elie Saab and others confirmed that his market had recovered despite the pandemic            </p><div itemprop="articleBody">
          <p>A few weeks ago, on the sidelines of the El Gouna Film Festival, Tunisian actress Dora Zarrouk celebrated her wedding with Egyptian engineer Hani Saad.  Only a week passed until the pictures of actress Hanadi Muhanna and her groom, actor Ahmed Khaled Saleh, topped the news of magazines and "Social Media".  Either way, some would have thought that the two occasions were just two birthday parties given by a bunch of stars, were it not for my luxurious wedding dress.  Dora wore a dress signed by the Lebanese Zuhair Murad, and Hanadi Muhanna wore a dress signed by Egyptian Hani Al-Beheiri, while leaving no doubt that the occasion was a wedding despite the restrictions imposed on large gatherings.

The pictures confirm the sales figures that the wedding dress has gained more importance than before in the time of Corona. It is the most influential and enduring in the memories album to signify the joy of a lifetime’s night. Coronavirus has changed many things in our lives, and it can even be said that it has turned our lives upside down. It would have been easy for him to abort the joy of the many brides who “program” their marriage this year, had it not been for their refusal to submit to its restrictions. In order not to give up the night of their life in 2020, they had to give up other things such as reducing the number of attendees, hall space, orchestras, and others. What was not dispensed with was the roses and the wedding dress, because they are the only documentation of the event through photos and videos.

What all designers do not disagree with is that the small weddings in the time of Corona eased some of the burden on the budget allocated for a luxurious wedding, adding that the largest proportion of this budget went to the customized wedding dress. Even a bride who did not dream of a “Haute Couture” dress had the opportunity this year. Designers Azzi and Osta confirmed this in an exclusive interview with Asharq Al-Awsat, in which they confirmed that the market for wedding dresses is unusually healthy despite the pandemic. They even confirmed that the line of wedding dresses was a lifeline for designers in the Middle East, as their luxurious and handcrafted designs increased demand. “The bride now knows that the image that she drew for a huge wedding is no longer possible due to the restrictions imposed on the number of attendees, so she compensated for this shortfall by allocating a decent budget for her wedding dress.” It is the memory that will stay with it throughout life ».

International designer Elie Saab confirmed this by saying: “For us, Corona did not affect the (Haute Couture) line in general and wedding dresses in particular. On the contrary, the Middle Eastern client in particular does not give up on this occasion in any way, because there are pictures and memories that will remain with her until the end of life. He continued in a telephone interview: “What I noticed is that the decrease in the number of invitees may have affected the designs that got rid of exaggerated details to focus on the most important, such as modern lines that reflect the requirements of a new era without compromising its luxury, but quite the opposite. Even though she no longer wants it in large size and long meters of fabrics or generous amounts of embroideries, she wants it to be distinguished by its fine details, which requires a lot of innovation and creativity.

Elie added that this dress represents the joy of the night of life that the bride dreamed of for years, so it was not possible to be affected or retracted by the Corona pandemic. As for the foreign bride who has become addicted to his designs in recent decades, his designs have not changed much, by virtue of which they have always tended to simple lines and quiet details. But according to Elie Saab’s opinion, “Despite the different cultures and tastes, it remains the biggest expression of the joy of life, and many girls still dream of it and imagine its shape and beauty since childhood, which will not budge him from his stature.”

The importance of a wedding dress is no different in the Middle East than in other parts of the world. The wedding season in India, for example, is one of the most important seasons for marketing generously embroidered evening wear, and the wedding market is estimated at 50 billion dollars. Like the Middle East, weddings are not limited to a single day in which a huge party is held, attended by hundreds, if not thousands of invitees from all over the world, but rather it is a celebration that lasts for several days in which the grooms and guests alike appear in different costumes. All signs indicate that he has not been significantly affected. The same applies to the United States of America. When Oscar de la Ronta opened its doors last May, I noticed that wedding dresses, which account for only 10 to 15 percent of its sales, were the most vibrant and dynamic, whether it came to dresses estimated at 4 thousand dollars or another. At 25 thousand dollars. In Britain, where the wedding dresses industry is estimated at 10 billion pounds, the postponement of about 74,000 wedding ceremonies since last March has not affected the brides’ desire to move forward with the completion of their ceremonies, even on a small scale.

Despite the importance of wedding dresses here as well as the most important weapon that reflects happiness and resists the Corona cloud, their designs differed from their counterparts in the Middle East, where an increasing demand was observed for dresses inherited from grandmothers and mothers and ready-made dresses at reasonable prices. It is not only about the budget, but also about personal principles and convictions, with the guide of the dress that Princess Beatrice chose on the occasion of her marriage in July, and was for her grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II. On the other hand, the British singer Lily Allen chose an ivory silk dress, with a design dating back to the 1960s, with a length not exceeding the knee, reflecting her personality, and it was from the Dior collection of ready-to-wear for this spring and summer.

“Matchfashion” website, which has its headquarters in central London in “Carlos Place”, stated that between April and July, sales of ready-to-wear wedding dresses increased by 23 percent. The reason, according to stylists, is that the European bride wants it to be a long-term investment. Even when she spent only about 3 thousand or 4 thousand pounds sterling on him, she wanted him distinguished and flexible, and she could use it on various occasions instead of limiting it to her wedding day only. This is what was confirmed by the website “Net Aborte”, which conducted a study of new shopping behaviors in the time of Corona. She reported that this year’s bride is looking for a dress in which she shines on the night of her life, and she benefits from it on other occasions, and this means her reluctance to the many embroideries and complex details.

And by the admission of many Coronavirus brides, the occasion was not entirely bad. It is true that she misses friends, and sometimes family, if they are in faraway countries, she made up for that with much intimacy and love. A love that included thinking about others as well and thinking about sustainability. Among the scenes revived by the pandemic is the revival of wedding dress rental sites, where the site “Rotaro”, for example, recorded an increase of 200 percent in the last four months, and also the emergence of humanitarian initiatives such as the “Brides Do Good” initiative launched by the Lebanese Chantal Khoueiri in 2016 in cooperation with «Bicester Village». Chantal took advantage of her good relations with many women of the velvet community and stars, and asked them to donate their wedding dresses to support a campaign aimed at combating the marriage of underage girls and providing them with educational opportunities. Chantal says, “The initiative is an opportunity to raise awareness of the situation of many girls who are forced to marry at a very young age and prevent them from living their childhood and education, while at the same time reducing consumption by recycling these dresses and giving them a second or third chance to introduce happiness; Not only the bride, but also disadvantaged girls all over the world, which gives this dress a human dimension that goes beyond the occasion itself and makes it a source of real happiness.


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