Tuesday, January 10, 2012

ARABULOUS featured in Harper's Bazaar Arabia!

This is definitely our cherry on top moment <3 what a way to start the year!
What better way could we ask for then to be discovered by the most illustrious fashion magazine in the region?!


Our experience with Harper's Bazaar Arabia was quite amazing and so much fun, we have had the pleasure of getting to know some of they're team members who are absolutely sweet and supportive in every way!

Early morning meeting and we're super ecstatic already!

 major exclusive Harper's Bazaar wardrobe ;P

Behind the scenes inside the studio

and just before we left we took a quick pic with the lovely Emily Baxtor,
also known as the deputy editor in HBA.


Coming in number 7..

Take a closer look!

Check out the whole interview here:

How did you meet – what’s your story, and how did Arabulous come about?

The Founder’s of ARABULOUS are Lulwa and Mneera Al-Khalifa, We are sisters, sisters that are so opposite of each other to the point that we complete one another, its like we’re yin and yang. We balance each other in our ideas, work, and personalities.
The idea was born in 2008 when Lulwa was facing her final year in Graphic Design trying to come up with a unique idea for her graduation project. While Mneera was in her foundation year in Art and Design, dealing with a project that will determine her major field. We both put our heads together and started brainstorming about new and fun ideas. Of course both of us presented this as our project but we received very critical feedback from our professors, and very negative attitudes that this idea would not work in reality. 
Being the passionate culturist's that we are, we did not let their judgment get to us and let us down, especially when the reactions of our classmates were completely contrasting to our professors’.
In May 2011, we produced the first batch of ARABULOUS T-shirts.

Why is it so important to you to preserve Arabic and Bahraini culture?
Why did you decide to fuse Eastern and Western cultures in your designs and how are you doing it?

The Bahraini society is rapidly flourishing as a metropolitan country, they are known for their high standard education, world class business friendly environment, and open to modern technologies to pave the way to a futuristic country. All the well-developed countries follow the same system, but what will separate our country or the rest of the (GCC) countries from the rest? And that would be their undoubtedly unique heritage. Our aim is to bring back the Arabian culture to the people before it gets neglected due to the affect of globalization. The idea of the T-shirt designs was influenced by the new age of art on T-shirts, a fashion statement that portrayed endless cultures and is worn and understood globally it is also accepted internationally and speaks out to people of all nations, because T-shirts are an international uniform. By wearing these T-shirts, the Arabs will be encouraged to hold on to their heritage and traditions and develop them in ways for it to suit our neoteric era.

What is the overall Arabulous message you’re trying to put across?
How do you fuse age-old traditions of Arabic culture with contemporary, wearable fashion?

Our main goal is to convince the Arab youth to embrace their culture and wear it proudly, there is no shame in taking your culture and making it a trend. We have noticed that what is popular today within the younger generation is most of the time a western trend, therefore they look-down upon their own culture and when it comes to setting trends they usually depend on what’s popular in the far western end. Naturally when a new rage is born and in our case it’s often a western rage, thus to successfully achieve this trend we would have to go through certain processes before actually achieving this trend. First we would have to understand the story, history behind it or how it became to be so popular, then immediately study the style and concept of this trend, and finally work-it. Now if we presented the Arabs with something that they already are very familiar with and completely understand it’s background or origin, it would no longer require them to go through these tedious steps. So we decided to make something that would be so irresistible to them, something new and trendy but at the same time they can relate to on a personal level and it becomes more like a very appealing inside joke. Yes, our secret is that we are tempting our customers by displaying things on our T-shirts that they KNOW they can’t live a day without hearing, seeing, or experiencing them, and that is their Culture <3.

Do you feel responsible for ensuring the history and heritage of your culture is preserved?

Actually we do, even though it may seem like a huge responsibility but it’s time someone did something about it and we’re trying to do it in a more hip and new way to get their attention, which is through fashion and contemporary design.

Describe the men/women you design your T-shirts for…

Our T-shirts don’t necessarily have an age group because we would like to believe that our theme suits all ages especially because our designs portray the Arabian culture in general, but to be completely honest we are definitely targeting the younger generation. To be more precise we are focusing on those who are young and are facing a confusing gap between the old-fashioned generation, who are very true to their heritage and are very persistent about it, and the new generation that is very keen on keeping up with the developments of modern globalization. As you can see it is very difficult to find anything that would connect these two very different generations, one is looking back and the other is looking forward. To bring them together we’ve concocted a solution that will bond them together once and for all.

Who would you most like to see wearing them?

We would be overjoyed to see both generations accepting our work and allow themselves to break the stereotype that they have been portrayed as whether they were from the old-fashioned generation or the new one, it’s time we find ourselves a connection.

What price do they start from and where can we find them (anywhere in the UAE?)

At the moment our shirts are sold in Bahrain at Al’Aali Mall in a shop called Bon Bon, there they are sold for 17 BD which is equivalent to 165.622 AED. These past months since the establishment we’ve also began joining exhibitions to get our brand out there in the market scene, we are thinking of joining exhibitions all over the region just to make sure it reaches all our fans.

How many T-shirts have you designed and sold so far?

We’ve designed a total of 9 designs, but we’ve only printed 7 of the designs because the other two where not strong enough.

Which has been your best-seller?

Without a doubt the “7abtain” Habtain , it’s definitely our crowd pleaser.

Who buys them – what nationalities?

So far we’ve sold to Bahrainis, Kuwaitis, Qataris, Saudis, Emiratis, Omanis, and Iraqis
Basically our fans have expanded beyond our local border and reach them regionally.

Who or what inspires your designs?

The Arabian culture is our main inspiration with each new design we narrow it down to a certain subject.

Talk us through your ‘So What If I Wear Heels In The Dessert’ T-shirt – how the concept came about, the inspiration, the making of it, the slogan etc…

You are well aware by now that Arabs live in a desert environment, but even in these harsh conditions we are very persistent on looking good especially our Arabian fashionistas, no matter where we go or how inconvenient our situation is they will put a lot of effort on making sure that their appearance is flawless. So don’t be surprised if you see a girl wearing heels to the desert, because it’s in our agenda to look good wherever we go, and if you try questioning her she will reply back so confidently and make you look silly for asking the question in the first place ;p

The T-shirts you’re making really promote fashion as being fun – is this important to Arabulous?


Describe your own styles – what do you both wear?

Lulwa is very inspired by the European scene, because at times she may dress up in trimmed and formal outfits as if she’s attending a boarding school in Switzerland, or you may see her dressed up in striped shirts and loafers as if she’s about to get on a yacht in the South of France.
Mneera on the other hand adores old Hollywood glamour and especially the gorgeous actress Elizabeth Taylor. She’s attracted to lace, ribbons and her color palette revolves around these colors: black, red, beige, and white.

How old are you both?

Lulwa is 26 and Mneera is 22

So, what’s next for Arabulous – what will we see in 2012?!

More fun and exciting designs about our Arabian culture with loads of hilarious inside jokes!