Shamaeel Ansari’s ‘Saaz’ – to the tune of fierce, beautiful music

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Shamaeel Ansari’s aesthetic has always been a fierce one. For 34 odd years, the designer has created clothes for the woman who loves looking beautiful but also wants to stand out, a confident woman with a certain je na sais quo about her, who doesn’t want to look merely pretty.

Of course, merely pretty clothes sell extremely well. Over time, many of Pakistan’s veteran designers – some of whom with decades of experience to their credit – have set aside their innovation and made a beeline for beautiful but forgettable clothes. Then again, not everyone can master the balancing act that Shamaeel can waltz through, creating clothes that are cutting-edge but wearable and so utterly unique that you can recognize them as hers, immediately.

I once commented to Shamaeel that while plagiarism may be rampant in the fashion industry, copycats would find it tough to replicate her designs. The larger than life, in-your-face glamour that she creates is ingenuous, a mix of especially created print with embroidered patterns, a dash of bling, an eccentric tweak to the silhouette.

The designer’s latest line of formal-wear, ‘Saaz’, is replete with beautiful details on luxury fabrics.  Scrutinizing it, the many influences that have always inspired Shamaeel are visible in the design; florals from Central Asia, colors reminiscent of the Ottoman Empire and a regality connected with the many dynasties that have reigned over the Indo-Pak subcontinent.

Zooming in, the florals splay out in unique patterns …



It’s quintessentially regal …


The colors traverse a brilliant palette, also very regal …




The embroidery patterns never wind about in generic patterns; there is an artistry to them…


The silhouettes are free-flowing …



It’s statement-wear meant to be cherished and worn again and again. And as always, Shamaeel’s ‘Saaz’ plays a tune of its very own, setting trends rather than blending into the usual ‘pretty’ formal-wear.




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Shamaeel Ansari’s ‘Saaz’ – to the tune of fierce, beautiful music