Heya Arabian Fashion Exhibition, Qatar’s most popular showcase of abayas and traditional Arabian attire, will return for its 14th edition this month with a rich display of more than 230 local, regional and international fashion brands, including more than 170 brands from Qatar.
Held under the patronage of Her Excellency, Sheikha Al Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, the show will be held at the Doha Exhibition and Convention Center (DECC) between 26-30 October 2018.
Representing a 65% increase in local designers from the previous Autumn/Winter 2017 edition, this highly-anticipated event is a showcase of local, Pan-Arab and international designers where the latest fashions will be on display, catering to a growing demand for modest and Islamic styles in a fashion forward market.
In this edition, the exhibition will welcome a 56% increase in the number of exhibitors compared to Heya12 Autumn/Winter 2017 Exhibition, with 14 countries confirmed to attend including neighboring Kuwait and Oman as well as India, Turkey, Sri-Lanka, Italy, Morocco, Hong Kong, Lebanon, China, Spain, Belgium, and the US.
Numerous fashion shows, workshops and conversations with fashion icons are woven through this must-visit edition of Heya. Organisers have announced partnerships to continue the events legacy of bringing innovative ways to support entrepreneurs through collaborations with Virginia Commonwealth University in Qatar (VCUQ) and Qatar Business Incubation Center (QBIC); as well as new partnerships with Discover America Week, Tajmeel (Qatar International Beauty Academy), and Instituto di Moda Burgo Qatar (Fashion and Arts Academy), participating for the first time.
Heya will provide its visitors with valuable expertise in everything from fashion marketing to finance and advice in getting a fashion business off the ground.
Both exhibitors and visitors will also be treated to a conversation with Sheikha Asma Al-Thani, who recently made history by becoming the first Qatari to ski to the North Pole. Sheikha Asma will talk about her journey in an exclusive forum designed to empower Qatari women.
The 14th edition of Heya will offer shoppers and visitors an assortment of unique collections, from high-street apparel, couture and luxury, to the latest modest fashion evening gowns, leather accessories as well as perfumery and make-up. Offering a unique flavour of Arabian heritage, the Autumn/Winter 2018 show will see returning brands including; 3 batch by Fatma Alahmed, Almotahajiba and QLabel from Qatar; as well as Lala Moda from Morocco, Luna Italia from Italy and Bocan from Turkey. A host of new brands will participate this year including; Khemar, Lulu Collection and Noon Designs from Qatar; as well as Dar Alamria from Kuwait and Aikeya from India.
Heya’s US dedicated pavilion will feature world renowned celebrity designer, Tosca New York. Tosca New York concentrates on custom clothing for elegant women. An individual pattern is made for each customer at Tosca, and their glamorous evening gowns are worn by international clientele all over the world. The brand has dressed international opera stars Susan Graham, Renee Fleming, Deborah Voigt and Pretty Yende. Performers like Aretha Franklin and Leslie Uggams have also worn Tosca’s gowns on stage and television.
Another highlight at Heya this year will be the showcase of two dedicated pavilions from Spain and Belgium. Key designers participating from Spain will be Antonia Serena, Bouret, Lucia de Miguel and Inunez, whilst Alter Era will bring their unique designs straight from Belgium to the heart of Doha.
Heya is delivered by Design Creationz with the support of Qatar Tourism Authority (QTA) as part of its efforts to empower the private sector to attract and host global events. Jawaher Al-Khuzaei, Acting Director of Communications and Marketing at Qatar Tourism Authority (QTA), said, “Supporting local exhibitions and conferences forms an important part of QTA’s Business Events strategy, which seeks to position Qatar as a premium destination for business events. Heya’s growth over the years from a homegrown exhibition to a regional hub for budding and established designers demonstrates the Qatari market’s ability to provide the facilities, the organizational prowess and the climate for such gatherings to thrive.”
Design Creationz spokesperson Esraa Abel commented on this occasion saying: “The show this year is the most diverse it has ever been; we have designers from countries that have never been represented before, such as Belgium and the US. We have also dedicated a larger portion of the exhibition space to local talent, with more than 170 brands participating from Qatar alone, marking a 65% increase from the previous Autumn/Winter show in 2017.”
“It is important for us to bring to the market new thriving Qatari talents. As Heya is becoming a corner-stone of Qatar’s fashion scene, we have seen a growing interest to continue to nurture and develop local design talent, from both a fashion and business perspective. Our plans are set to grow the exhibition even further for the coming years. By showcasing more international brands, we are aiming to diversify our target visitors and attract more international audiences,” she added.
For this year’s edition, Heya has focused on providing unique marketing and expertise opportunities for aspiring Qatari designers, including an educational partnership with Qatar Business Incubation Center (QBIC) to enroll designers in the incubation centre and to offer advice on how to navigate the complexities of starting and growing a business, workshops on fashion hosted by Virginia Commonwealth University – Qatar (VCUQ), as well as workshops on fashion by Istituto di Moda Burgo International Fashion & Arts Academy, Qatar, focused on haute couture draping techniques, and fashion styling.
On this occasion, Kimberly Guthrie, Chair of Fashion at Virginia Commonwealth University – Qatar (VCUQ) said: “For nearly two decades, the Department of Fashion Design at VCU has made a significant and creative impact locally and abroad with many of their graduates working in fashion and other design industries. We are so grateful to Heya for their years of collaboration and support in creating a unique platform for alumni to reach the local market and grow their businesses”.
Furthermore, Aysha Al-Romaihi, Business Development Manager at Qatar Business Incubation Center, said: “QBIC is proud to reaffirm our partnership with Heya as we work together to actively strengthen the advancement of female entrepreneurship in Qatar. In the face of recent adversity, the nation's entrepreneurs have shown tremendous resilience and drive, and there are boundless opportunities awaiting them. In extending our support to entrepreneurs from the fashion industry, we empower the brilliant creativity and innovative thinking of today to light the way towards brighter tomorrows. Working together with partners such as Heya we share the vision and the journey into a future of empowerment and success for Qatar's female entrepreneurs”.
The 14th edition of Heya will also feature a new partnership with Tajmeel, Qatar International Beauty Academy (QIBA). Tajmeel was founded in 2009 by Nama (formerly known as the Social Development Centre - SDC). With the Nama's support, Tajmeel was established to provide training courses of the highest caliber within the beauty industry. Tajmeel will furthermore lead a series of workshops throughout the exhibition on a variety of topics including a make-up demo, what works and what doesn’t in skincare and a dedicated workshop on hairstyles.
Beverley Crowther, Principal of Tajmeel said: "As Qatar International Beauty Academy, Tajmeel's purpose is to structure and foster the beauty industry locally. On the other hand, Heya, as a fashion exhibition in Qatar, has a similar role in developing the fashion industry. Fashion and beauty industries share the same audience; thus sponsoring Heya and hosting our graduation ceremony at the exhibition is part of a synergistic approach to widen the exposure of both the show and Tajmeel ".
Heya is open for women only except on the opening day (26th October), during which men can accompany family members. Children below the age of the 13 cannot enter the exhibition.
Proud partners of this edition of Heya include Qatar Business Incubation Center (QBIC), Virginia Commonwealth University in Qatar (VCUQ), Tajmeel, Maison de Joelle, Instituto de Moda Burgo Laderach, Shangri-La Hotel Doha, Ezdan hotels, H.E.N.K.S., Qatar Living, Marhaba, Ohlala, I Love Qatar, Qatar Red Crescent and VEGA.
For more information on the 14th Heya Arabian Fashion Exhibition please visit www.heya.qa. Visitors can also download the Heya mobile app, enabling visitors to stay up-to-date with events and easily navigate brands and goods on offer.
Cover image courtesy of Heya
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