Lauren Davis, ALANGOO.com
With Middle Eastern designers breaking their way into the western fashion scene more and more every year and with every collection, one designer has emerged to be a serious force to be reckoned with. Hussein Bazaza, just 26 years old has shown serious skill, influence, and passion with his namesake brand. The young designer has recently been influenced by Persian art and design in one of his most popular collections to date, his Spring/Summer 2016 collection, Mithra. Mithra is based on a tale of a post apocalyptic Persian princess, and Bazaza does not fail in bringing you into her world of escape and wonder. Hussein Bazaza was kind enough to grant us an exclusive interview on Mithra, his life, his fashions, and his inspirations.
Born in Beirut, Lebanon, Bazaza developed an appreciation for art and fashion from an early age. Seeing her son’s budding talent, Bazaza’s mother encouraged him to study fashion. He enrolled in ESMOD Beirut to study fashion and pattern making, and soon after graduating the young designer won a competition which landed him a much coveted internship with Maison Rabih Kayrouz in Paris. After his internship, he moved back to Beirut to work as a junior designer for Elie Saab, before launching his own namesake brand which is now more popular than ever.
Being from Beirut and having interned in Paris have influenced the designer’s fashion and inspirations greatly. “Everything about the aura in Lebanon, from its streets to its traditions, is an inspiration no matter where you look.” This is where he gets his love of that antique Middle Eastern fashion. However Paris has shaped him into a more forward thinking designer. He loves to add Western influences like lace collages, color blocking, and bold hues. This mix of East and West emanates greatly in his Mithra collection.
Mithra was based on the mythical story of Princess Mithra who survived a nuclear apocalypse created by the King of Persian. After she must live through the resurgence of nature while still struggling with her own internal battles. The collection is primarily based on antique Persian art and fashion featuring miniature painting, vintage patterns, and traditional color use. As Bazaza likes to make up different stories for every collection, the story of Princess Mithra was created after he sought inspirations from a different Middle Eastern country than his own. “Throughout my extensive research, I found the Persian culture incredibly inspiring, but wanted to add a bit of drama to it in addition to my love for chemistry, my mind led me to Princess Mithra.” And indeed what he produced with the collection was a flurry of beautiful structured pieces with bold colors and fine lines. Each piece accentuates a woman’s body perfectly. The ancient Persian miniature painting in many of the pieces is subtle enough to not grab your attention away from the magnificent form of the fashions, yet striking enough to leave you in awe and wondering what story is being told.
The collection has gotten unbelievably good reviews, and has become so popular that Bazaza was asked to create a continuation of Mitra, a smaller capsule collection, which is available exclusively on Farfetch.com, marking the first time that Bazaza’s work will be represented on an international platform. “I think the mix between the oriental feels and the strong modern thought that we had incorporated in Mithra, and its capsule collection, made it possible to be pretty well translated to the western audience.”
“I am glad we were inspired by [Persian culture] once. See, for every collection we seek different inspirations so that we can always offer new themes. But you never know what might inspire me again in the future.” Mithra was definitely a different and wonderful collection from Bazaza, and we cant wait to see what comes of him next.
Model walks the runway at the Hussein Bazaza show during Dubai Fashion Forward Spring/Summer 2016 (Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images for Fashion Forward
See the whole collection here.
Also see ALANGOO.com’s house produced Persian inspired clothing collection here.