Sahara: The Cotton Queens



Sat, 22 Jul 2017 - 11:04 GMT


Sat, 22 Jul 2017 - 11:04 GMT

photo courtesy - Sahara

photo courtesy - Sahara

By : Alia Gamal El Din

CAIRO - 22 July 2017: Known for the softest of cottons and a mix of bohemian and Egyptian designs, The Sahara Collection has become a staple for summer wear, whether it’s a funky t-shirt or a flowy summer dress.

From perfectly cut basic tees and racer backs with King Tut designs all the way to crochet-trimmed dresses, The Sahara Collection has made a name for itself that is synonymous with top-notch quality and designs cut to perfection.

The Sahara Clothing Company, established in 1990 and rebranded in 2011 to The Sahara Collection, is focused on encouraging local production, collaborating with women from Nagada, Siwa and Sinai to translate their traditional crafts into modernized collections that appeal to their target market.

“The clothing line’s designs ensure a blend of comfort and style, using the finest and softest Egyptian cotton,” says Karmah Sabry, co-founder and chief designer of The Sahara Collection. “As an Egyptian brand, The Sahara Collection aims to provide a service for Egyptians by producing sophisticated, on-trend designs at affordable, fair prices for a greater lifestyle.”

Sabry studied broadcasting and art at the American University in Cairo then pursued a certificate in fashion from Career Gates to develop her interest in pattern, print and colors.

“The inspiration for the clothing line stem from around me, both from within the city of Cairo as well as merging my design with global trends. Architectural spaces, cultural styles and the physical environment opened my eyes and guided me to use clothing design as not only a form of self expression, but as a mirror to representing the present moment,” adds Sabry.

What sets The Sahara Collection apart from most local brands is that it combines the latest fashion with a mix of vintage elements to produce comfortable clothes with an affordable price for all ages and genders. Sabry puts an ethnic twist using rich and rooted heritage and prints of many tribal cultures of Africa and Egypt, and this is why pattern clothes are the prominent style found in the shop.

“Versatility is key: Picture a flowing dress on the beach then traveling back to the city and pairing it up with heels for a swanky night out around town. The classic gentleman at an office meeting in a polished blue shirt heading to a beach resort in a suave linen combo,” explains Sabry. She adds that The Sahara Collection is all about “everyday cotton basics with an uplift for the daily grind in style.”

The Egyptian designer also aims at creating and providing clothes that give people comfort, confidence and ease, reflecting a mixture of bohemian, African and Egyptian inspirations in the prints and patterns used. “Effortlessly chic in breezy fits and fun prints, being out and about all day with your look on point, getting dolled up at night in festive prints and detail: It is all about the essentials juiced up with ethnic and fashion-forward fusion,” says Sabry.

When did you start getting into fashion?

I have always been interested in fashion and art ever since I was a child. I used to always play dress up as a child with my sister and my cousins, and then once I started being able to draw I was always interested in art and sketching.

What are the essential trends this summer?

You have a lot of midi-lengths, 1990’s fashion is definitely back in, with halter necks and floral embroideries and you also have the gypsy style. There are also lots of different sleeves, like the bishop sleeves, and especially the gypsy style that you can find in Sahara.

How can we stay updated with the latest fashion trends?

I think that, now, there are so many different ways [to learn now about trends] especially through social media. I think Pinterest always has a good lead on that. You can always check out your favorite fashion bloggers, international ones. Different TV channels and magazines can keep you up to date with the latest fashion trends and styles.

What colors should we be wearing this summer?

I think you should always stick to colors that suit your skin tone and your hair color best because these always bring out the best in each person. Also, white and black are always essential in every wardrobe because they always look neat and they go with everything.

What is the one summer fashion tip you would give people?

Keep a waterproof clutch in your beach bag because that is really useful for your phone, your small accessories and money; it will always keep them dry.

Which of your pieces fit slimmer bodies and which flatter curvier ones?

We have a lot of flowy pieces like tops, skirts, maxis, kimonos and pants; these go for both, slim and curvy body types as they are flowy but have a little bit of curves at the waist line so they help flatter both body types.

What are the summer 2017 essential pieces, for beach and generally a day out?

I would say for girls, an off-shoulder top is an essential as they are very in style this season: It comes in many different styles and designs. It can go well for a day on the beach as well a day in the city. On the beach, you could wear them with a pair of denim shorts, and in the city you could always wear it with jeans or a pair of pants and dress it up with some jewelry and wedges. It will suit a lot of girls, especially since it is very feminine.

Pick your favorite piece and tell us how your client can style it for a beach look, an evening look, and a day in the city.

I would say a wrap dress is an essential piece in every girl’s wardrobe. It is very flattering, especially at the waistline because it ties around the waist. It goes well so many different occasions; it can be worn at night, at a resort with a pair of wedges and some simple jewelry, in the city with a different pair of shoes or heels, and different jewelry of course and bags so it’s easy to change it up. It comes in essential black and in festive prints, so these can also be styled accordingly, whether you want to wear it at night or during the day in the city with a pair of flats. It can also be worn at work because it is essential as it goes with so many things and it is very comfortable to be worn at the office all day.

Follow Sahara on Instagram @TheSaharaCollection • Products sold online at, in their stores in Zamalek at 13 Mansour Mohamed Street and 10 Brazil Street, and in the North Coast at Diplo 3 shopping complex



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