Desert chic

Genderless collection hits runway on last day of Fashion Week

House of Jaffa presents contemporary resort collection, embroidered with sequined camels and hamsas

Jessica Steinberg, The Times of Israel's culture and lifestyles editor, covers the Sabra scene from south to north and back to the center

At the House of Jaffa fashion show during Kornit Fashion Week in Tel Aviv, March 22, 2023 (Jessica Steinberg/Times of Israel)
At the House of Jaffa fashion show during Kornit Fashion Week in Tel Aviv, March 22, 2023 (Jessica Steinberg/Times of Israel)

House of Jaffa designers Golan Frydman and Eddie Gavrillidis brought their brand of casual streetwear to Tel Aviv’s Hangar 11 runway on Wednesday afternoon, unveiling a collection on the final day of Kornit Fashion Week Tel Aviv that embraces fluidity.

The contemporary resort collection aims to be genderless, softening traditional menswear pieces with fabrics and embroideries reminiscent of the Middle East, with a few short skirts thrown in.

The collection featured mostly male models, all sauntering down the runway in cream and khaki colors, with embroidered camels, palm-shaped hamsa symbols and the occasional palm tree.

Some of the more feminine garments teased out the sequined effect, with shimmering tube dresses and summery stripes as well as fringed and tasseled wraps for skirts that were far longer than the men’s thigh-baring miniskirts.

The Israeli-born Frydman and Greek Gavrillidis met in London and came to Tel Aviv during the pandemic, establishing House of Jaffa.

Frydman is known for the award-winning label Fyodor Golan, whose designs have been worn by Madonna, Bella Hadid, Rihanna, Jennifer Lopez, and other celebrities.

From the 2023 collection of House of Jaffa at Kornit Fashion Week in Tel Aviv, March 22, 2023 (House of Jaffa)

Gavrillidis designed for Alexander McQueen and Tom Ford and established a London-based fashion development and manufacturing business, The Sampling Studio, which works with high-end fashion labels.

The pair aren’t the only local designers focused on the genderless crowd. David Weksler’s colorful streetwear collection shown on Sunday, the first day of Fashion Week, also pushes societal boundaries, particularly regarding gender and masculinity.

This was the 12th Fashion Week produced by Motti Reif, featuring 28 shows of both leading fashion designers and newer names in the industry.

This year’s Fashion Week was sponsored by Kornit Digital, an Israeli manufacturer that produces industrial inkjet printers, pigmented ink and chemical products for the textile industry.

Many of the participating designers worked with sustainable fabrics and digital printing processes in their collections.

Alon Livne, perhaps one of the best-known names at the event and revered for his Livne White bridal collections as well as his couture pieces worn by Beyonce and other celebrities (including her recent outfit for the “Black is King!” film), was the second-to-last show of the event.

A piece from the 2023 collection of designer Alon Livne at Kornit Fashion Week Tel Aviv, March 22, 2023 (Courtesy Alon Livne)

Livne sent his models down the runway in his 2023 collection, called EXOCET for the French missile primarily used in the Falklands War and known for the extensive damage it causes.

The collection imagines a post-apocalyptic world built from ruins.

All 34 pieces, including tailored jackets, pants, cocktail and evening dresses, bear the distinctive Livne look, with asymmetrical, geometric cuts and shaping that reimagine creating order from chaos.

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