(MENAFN - Gulf Times) *Qatar-India Year of Culture partners with Heya for showstopper with internationally acclaimed designer Suneet Varma
Heya Arabian Fashion Exhibition, Qatar's most popular showcase of abayas and traditional Arabian attire, will return for its 15th edition this month with a rich programme of more than 20 fashion shows, seminars, designer workshops and over 250 brands participating.
Held under the patronage of HE Sheikha al Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani, the show will be held April 26-30 at the Doha Exhibition and Convention Centre.
The event is delivered by Design Creationz, with the support of the Qatar National Tourism Council (QNTC), as part of its effort to empower the private sector to attract and host global events.
The exhibition continues to be the go-to platform for Qatari designers to showcase their designs, with Qatari brands representing 70% of participants.
This year's edition also features international brands from 11 countries including neighboring Kuwait and Oman as well as India, Lebanon, Morocco, China, India, Sri Lanka, England and Belgium.
Offering a unique flavour of Arabian heritage, the Spring/Summer 2019 show will see returning brands including Debaj, Harlienz, the Hammadies (previously Lamar), as well as new exhibitors including, Avenant, Ebru Aykas by Duygu Gume, Saouli by Karima Saouli to mention a few.
'As a growing platform for businesswomen and fashionistas from Qatar and the world, Heya is a great example of how business events can offer curated experiences that celebrate entrepreneurship and Arabian culture.
The show has provided an enriching event for lovers of Arabian fashion, whether designers, shoppers or businesswomen for 14 editions and we look forward to witnessing its continued growth in this next edition, Mashal Shahbik from QNTC said.
This year's exhibition has partnered with the Indian embassy in Doha, which will see designer Suneet Varma showcase his work in Qatar for the first time.
One of India's foremost couturiers, Varma is a name that immortalises glamour and timeless style.
After getting his degree from Europe in 1986, he went on to work with Yves Saint Laurent in Paris.
Varma will partake in numerous talks and workshops throughout Heya focusing on fashion design, textiles, and sustainable fashion.
'I am honoured to showcase my work for the first time at Heya Arabian Fashion Exhibition.
I look forward to engaging with the community on my work while also exploring the booming fashion scene in Qatar, Varma said.
Design Creationz spokesperson, Esraa Abel, said: 'The show this year offers the most diverse range of brands.
We have also dedicated a larger portion of the exhibition to regional talent, while celebrating the Qatar-India Year of Culture in collaboration with the Indian embassy.
Three prestigious designers, namely Pero, 3 Clothing, and SR, will also partake in the exhibition under the Indian Pavilion, while a special fashion show and reception will also take place under the aegis of the Indian ambassador's wife, Ritu Kumaran.
Numerous fashion shows, workshops and conversations with fashion icons are woven through the programme to ensure Heya continues with its tradition of supporting entrepreneurs.
Virginia Commonwealth University in Qatar (VCUQ), Tajmeel Academy Qatar, Qatar Business Incubation Center (QBIC), and Bedaya Centre will offer young talent valuable advice related to the industry.
Reem Al Suwaidi, general manager of Bedaya, said: 'Our mission is to provide support and guidance to Qatari entrepreneurs as they embark on their business journey.
Hamad al-Qahtani, general manager of QBIC, said: 'Heya is an excellent platform through which aspiring fashion designers, entrepreneurs and exhibitors can showcase their brands.
QBIC is focused on enriching the fashion industry through partnerships such as Heya to empower and support local entrepreneurs with a variety of programmes.
This year, some of our incubated start-ups are participating in the event and we look forward to empowering more designers through Heya.
Heya is open for women only except on the opening day (April 26), during which men can accompany family members.
Children below the age of the 13 cannot enter the exhibition.
Partners of this edition of Heya are Maison de Joelle, Shangri-La Doha, Ezdan Hotel, Tajmeel Academy, Virginia Common Wealth University, Guerlain Spa, Qatar Red Crescent and Primary Health Care Corp