The world’s largest fashion runway took place last night in Qatar, a breathtaking collaboration between Qatar Creates and CR Runway. Held in the center of the Ras Abu Aboud 974 Stadium in between the World Cup semifinal and final matches, Qatar Fashion United presented a beautiful mixture of fashion, culture, music, and sports, all in the same venue in front of 25,000 spectators.
By Ethan Dinçer
Featuring work from more than 150 designers from 6 continents and 50 countries, Qatar Fashion United dedicated a significant portion of the runway to MENA designers. 21 Qatar-based brands, including JDEED favorites 1309 and Maryam Al Darwish, were presented by M7, Qatar’s creative hub for entrepreneurship in fashion, design, and technology.
Sophia Kacimi, mastermind behind JDEED favorite Zoubida, was chosen to represent Morocco — “we all had to send one look representing our brand in addition to customizing one Off-White t-shirt for the World Cup… for Zoubida I did a full look with a blue suit and pink pencil skirt, a hood sewn on the World Cup t-shirt, and with the leftover fabric I covered a football in full Zoubida fabric”. Zoubida’s t-shirt design graced Imaan and Aicha Hammam as they represented Morocco on the runway.
comprised 4 Acts, each featuring a different highly choreographed presentation of fashion and culture. The opening was a World Cup ode, with national ambassadors from the 32 participating World Cup countries sporting customized jerseys. Immediately following, Aliya Al Obaidly and Harlienz – two Qatari brands – collaborated and performed “Where the Sand Touches the Sea,” inspired by Qatar’s deep historical ties to pearl diving. Act 2, “The Fashion World Tour,” was a grand celebration showcasing works from designers across 6 continents. Act 3 and the Finale showed an extravaganza of haute couture and eveningwear created exclusively by international designers, brands, and labels for the event. Within all 4 Acts, MENA labels were highlighted and centered.
In addition to the stunning fashion and theatrics, the event also featured performances by international superstars including Nancy Ajram, Post Malone, and DJ Snake, among many others.
All proceeds from ticket sales went towards Education Above All, an organization chaired by Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser and Her Excellency Sheikha Al Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani that provides educational opportunities to underserved children and youth and empowers women to become active members of their communities.
This is the third edition of CR Runway, conceived by Her Excellency Sheikha Mayassa Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani and curated by French editor Carine Roitfeld