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Bthaina: Luxury Abayas & Kaftans Every Woman Wants In Her Wardrobe

With its hand embroidered gold chords, flowy silhouettes and touch of boho charm, Bthaina’s ‘Ivory Ocean” collection is simply spellbinding…

Based in Oman, the Bthaina brand is renowned for its intricately hand embellished kaftans and abayas. As well as exquisite detail, the label’s Founder and designer, Buthaina Al Zadjali, focuses on protecting and redeveloping traditional Omani craftsmanship while introducing contemporary silhouettes.

The brand, which was re-launched earlier this year with a big bang, is currently part of Moda Operandi’s trunkshow rounding up some of the best emerging talent in the Middle East. We talk to Al Zadjali about her Moroccan-inspired SS18 collection, whIch is available on the online luxury fashion retailer.

Your abayas and kaftans are known for their exquisite details. Tell us about the embellishments you usually use and the handmade process that goes into sewing them on.
Each season, I use different embellishments from metallic threads, folded wires, to gold chords or sequins; it all depends on the inspiration of the collection. But the consistent factor is that these embellishments are always hand embroidered onto the fabrics by my team. It’s an intricate process and takes a lot of time, which is what creates the luxurious element to my pieces. 

What about the artisanal hand embroidery on your “Ivory Ocean” collection?
For my “Ivory Ocean” collection I used gold chords, which are twisted into patterns and then hand embroidered onto the fabric. I’ve also used crystals and metallic thread to highlight the patterns.

What was it about Morocco that inspired the SS18 range?
Morocco is incredibly beautiful and has this mysterious feel to it, which I found very inspiring. I can relate to the bohemian spirit of the country, and I find the heritage and landscape fascinating, so all of these elements combined inspired the collection.

Tell us a bit about the colours, fabrics and cuts.
I focused on an earthy colour palette of soft shades of ivory with pops of ocean blue. The fabrics are natural, while the silhouettes are flowy and comfortable with unique features such as capes, tiered layers and fluted sleeves.

Is there something that is different about the collection compared to your previous work?
The collection is mainly in shades of ivory, which compared to my previous collections is different because I usually use more colours than that! I wanted a pureness to the collection, which is why I chose this colour palette. There’s also a few more different silhouettes compared to previous seasons.

So which kind of woman do you have in mind when you design?
The Bthaina woman is confident, happy and relaxed. She likes to be comfortable yet stylish and appreciates quality and beauty.

How does it feel like to collaborate with Moda Operandi?
It’s incredibly exciting to be collaborating with Moda Operandi! I feel completely honoured that their team saw potential in my brand and has given me the opportunity to showcase my pieces to their clientele around the world. It’s a dream come true!

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