Maheen Khan talks about representation in the fashion industry

Pakistan's leading designer talks about inclusivity when it comes to plus sizes and what Pakistan lacks as a fashion industry


By Hareem Fatima

KARACHI: Known by her position as FPW‘s chairperson, Maheen Khan is more than just a figurehead leading a fashion show. Dubbed “Pillar of fashion”, Khan has styled a number of key figures such as Benazir Bhutto, Jemima Goldsmith, Kate Middleton, and Princess Sarvath al-Hassan among other dignified women. At the age of seventy-five, the fashion mogul stands tall with her unmatched expertise when it comes to Pakistani fashion.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Maheen Khan (@maheenofficial)

Chatting with Arabian Moda, Maheen Khan brushed over a number of subjects pertaining to what makes Pakistan’s fashion industry what it is today. Realizing how tough the times have been for smaller businesses, Khan reveals that the fashion industry has suffered no differently. “The top and bottom end of the market has stayed afloat but as always, those in-between have suffered,” she stated.

As the world shifts to the new normal, several fashion-related shows have been switched to online platforms instead of physical ones. Khan talks about how virtual fashion shows can be a savior, but not something to entirely depend on. “Virtual shows keep the imagery alive. Women all over the world are trapped in their homes like there is nothing better than to watch fashion! It is a breath of fresh air from the world outside. In my opinion, virtual shows cannot save a business but can keep the memory of a brand alive.”

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Maheen Khan (@maheenofficial)

Speaking about what lacks in the local fashion industry, Khan stated that its consumer base lacks women who understand fashion. Most of our fashion today is embellishment oriented. “To tell you the truth, the industry lacks a consumer base of women who understand fashion. In the present circumstances, can you blame designers if we see more embellishments and less or hardly any silhouette? How many women in Pakistan want to wear a stunning silhouette sans embroidery to a wedding? I rest my case.”

Khan brushed on the subject of inclusivity when it comes to plus-sized models as well. She stated that fashion has now opened its doors to women of all shapes and sizes today. The designer highlighted that fashion aims to sell an image, and its packaging is supposed to reaffirm that image. “Fashion Pakistan Week saw collections from two designers for generous sized non-model women. What is important to understand is that fashion sells an image, and an important part of it is the packaging.”

Read More