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Sunday 11 July 2010

Pakistan's finest fashion label arrives in London

O'nitaa is an exclusive Asian designer fashion store

Last Friday I attended the European launch of Pakistani fashion label Sana Safinaz. Housed exclusively in O'nitaa, near Baker Street, the Spring/Summer collection consists of delicate floaty feminine dresses and designer Sana, one half of the design duo was in store to explain why it's taken them 20 years to launch in the continent and to introduce the stunning garments.

Designer Sana launched the label's first European collection
 Sana and Safinaz are sisters in law and are the biggest household name in Pakistani fashion, setting the trends for the whole country (according to Sana even the UK is 5 years behind their visions.) Their company exists of 450 staff and everything is done inhouse including, designing, dyeing, printing and embroidery. Although their clothes are aimed primarily at Asian women, they cross over to the Western market with ease using thin silks, chiffons, crepe and organze; there is a very English charm about their use of floral patchwork fabrics teamed with pastel colours and lace detailing.

Patchwork and floaty dresses are a signature look
Consisting mainly of dresses, long tops and kaftans, they would fit into a summer wardrobe with ease and the floaty shapes are flattering for all figures. They've conquered their home country and the Middle East so why did they take so long to reach our shores?

Detailed centre panels 
Sana explained it's because they wanted to build up their lines and reputation before they launched rather than coming here as just another label. They chose to be stocked in O'Nitaa first as it's the only designer fashion department store, with garments that compliment theirs. In Pakistan when they launch their new collections, roads are cordoned off and security lined up (think back to the Primark flagship in Bond Street opening with customers getting crushed)...in London, things were more subtle but with designs that are so pretty and appealing it won't be long before they make their impression on these shores. Price wise pieces range from £200-£400 which may sound steep but when you see the clothes in person, they are so stunning - they look as though they are worth so much more. I really recommend popping in and seeing them for yourself, they are gorgeous! As is the whole shop!

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