As the new work and social season blossoms, four Saudi women share their fashion go-tos, and cold-weather style.
Blazer, top, skirt, shoes, belt, Prada. Photo: Lina Mo. Vogue Arabia, September 2022
As an entrepreneur, and fashion and marketing consultant, Nojoud Alrumaihi – who is based in Riyadh – is particularly aware of the importance of making a good impression. During winter, when people start to feel more connected, Alrumaihi enjoys simple, cozy activities, such as “going to the park or having a morning warm beverage surrounded by twinkling lights,” she says. “The atmosphere seems so enriching. Even the change of scents – from watery to deep and warmer – is something I love about this season.” Alrumaihi’s wardrobe, and her loved ones’, too, adapt with winter. “As a mom, nothing is sweeter than putting my daughter in a warm puffer jacket before she goes to school and making her a cup of hot chocolate once she is back,” she says.
Corset, coat, skirt, shoes, bag, Dior. Photo: Lina Mo. Vogue Arabia, September 2022
During this season, Alrumaihi plays with her favorite fashion approach: layering. “You get to truly experience mixing fabrics and colors to create an oversized look,” she says. “Not to mention how comfortable winter clothes can be and how you can easily dress up by simply changing one or two pieces, such as switching from sneakers to boots.” With shackets, sweater dresses, and velvet at the top of her list, Alrumaihi takes winter as an opportunity to adapt her style depending on the time of the day. “You don’t have to wear your whole [day] look at night,” she notes. “You can simply add a scarf, some bold accessories, or pointy boots.”
Top, skirt, belt,bag, socks, Miu Miu; shoes, Amal’s own. Photo: Lina Mo. Vogue Arabia, September 2022
Being a female athlete doesn’t mean style falls by the wayside. This is particularly true for Jeddah-based CrossFit coach Amal Baatia, who always chooses garments that are comfortable. “A dressed-up sweater is my favorite winter [look],” she confesses. “I love wearing sweaters all the time, so I became a little bit creative in how to use them. Sometimes I prefer tucking them inside a skirt, while on other occasions, I wear them over a dress and heels.” Baatia especially covets the winter season. “I always feel that cold weather brings family together,” she says. “There is so much joy and deep connection during that period.”
Dress, shoes, Gucci; bag, Adidas. Photo: Lina Mo. Vogue Arabia, September 2022
Her sport routine remains busy all year long. “I do strength training for an hour-and-a-half followed by deep stretching five days a week, then one active recovery day, which usually includes mobility, yoga, or any other light activity.” The right clothes help support Baatia in her active life. Alyx Studio is one of her favorite brands, and Baatia’s advice is “to always wear what reflects your personality. For this season, I am all about chunky knitwear, boots, and pop color suits, but my preference will always be sports luxe.”
Alsharefa Aisha Almamy
Coat, dress, Atelier Hekayat; sunglasses, Aisha’s own. Photo: Lina Mo. Vogue Arabia, September 2022
After living in Paris and then spending time in London, the CEO and founder of Basamat Arabia is back to her roots, in Jeddah. While she is very committed to her business, fashion holds an important place in her life, too. When it comes to her look, Almamy’s secret is twofold: adding a vintage piece to her outfit and focusing on her favorite brands, which include YSL, Alexander McQueen, Valentino, Burberry, JW Anderson, and Thom Browne.
Dress, Taller Marmo; shoes, bag, Louboutin. Photo: Lina Mo. Vogue Arabia, September 2022
For the upcoming cooler season, Almamy will enlist some essentials, such as turtlenecks, sweaters, and Heattech innerwear and thermals, combined with high boots and big coats – for the latter, “the bigger the better,” she says. These items make Almamy feel both comfortable and stylish – key for anyone with a full schedule. “Winter is a time of family and friends’ gatherings, big dinners, camping, and outdoor activities,” smiles Almamy, who particularly likes this season, when things slow down a little. Whether she needs to be elegant or relaxed, the CEO always thinks about the best combinations of clothes to create a visual impact and a sense of character. Her number-one rule is to add a belt. “Balance the proportions of your body and how much skin you are showing to always look classy,” she says. For an easy change of look from day to night, there is nothing like using accessories, switching shoes, varying your hair, or playing with your makeup, believes Almamy. Her guilty pleasure: “I love to update my shoes every season and then start building my looks.”
Top, skirt, Atelier Hekayat; tights, shoes, Valentino. Photo: Lina Mo. Vogue Arabia, September 2022
Born, raised, and currently based in Jeddah, Sarah Taibah is used to being both behind and in front of the camera. As a filmmaker, she created the Shahid original dark comedy series Jameel Jedan, which released earlier this year. As an actress, she started her career with the lead role in the short film Zaina’s Cake (2015) before starring in Roll’em and This Other Thing. She also creates illustrations using traditional mediums and digital tools, completing a comic one during the Covid quarantine.
Top, skirt, tights, shoes, bag, Valentino. Photo: Lina Mo. Vogue Arabia, September 2022
For this creative mind, Fall is the perfect opportunity to recharge. “My energy renews itself during this season and it’s a good time to reflect and create,” she confesses. Then, when winter comes, precious moments with family and friends prevail. To cope with lower temperatures, a scarf is Taibah’s ultimate winter wardrobe styling hack. “It is a must because it adds style to the outfit and warms you up at the same time,” she says. Any time of the year, Taibah favors basic yet stylish black outfits that are both comfortable and a little edgy. “The advantage is that they can be worn day and night,” she says. “I also love wearing a lot of necklaces and rings.” No matter your preferences, Taibah’s styling advice is straightforward: “Don’t follow the trends and trust your gut.”
Originally published in the September 2022 issue of Vogue Arabia
Style: Mohammad Hazem RezqHair and makeup: Mermaid SalonFashion assistant: Waad BaljoonVideographer: Ayman TamanoVideographer assistant: Sarah Chafei With special thanks to Nassif House Museum, Vegan Street, and Shangri-la Jeddah
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As the new work and social season blossoms, four Saudi women share their fashion go-tos, and cold-weather style.
Karen Wazen. Photo: Instagram.com
The streets of Paris are rife with color as fashion week attendees from the Middle East arrive at the shows dressed in monochrome and brightly-colored outfits. Whatever your favorite shade may be, there’s plenty of inspiration to go around and to embrace saturated hues void of patterns.
Karen Wazen‘s look for the Dior show was met with a flurry of appreciation as her 7.2 million followers took in her lime green number. The Lebanese entrepreneur chose to wear a shift dress with a high neck which was cinched in at the waist with a long belt, and paired the piece with a matching chain strap quilted bag from the brand. Also at the French house’s Fall 2022 show, Nojoud Alrumaihi made a case for royal blue in a similar shirt dress, but with zip-up detailing. The Saudi marketing specialist styled the piece with black leggings, lace-up boots, and a Lady Dior clutch. Indulging in color-blocking was Dima Al Sheikhly, who wore a sleeveless black dress from the fashion house, featuring bright orange and green stripes on its hem, and paired it with a blue purse.
Elsewhere during the week, Diala Makki opted for head-to-toe forest green for the Balmain show. The TV host wore a tweed shirt left unbuttoned at the waist to reveal the Balmain logo belt looped around her loose-fitted trousers, which were tucked into her strappy heels. Honorable mention goes to to Rawdah Mohamed, who turned heads in an ensemble featuring a bold color pairing. Created by Paris-based designer Gregory Assaad, the white and yellow patterned shirt worn by the Somali-Norwegian model featured voluminous sleeves, which she offset with straight-legged leather pants in red. Ola Farahat and Reem Alswaidi also found fans in the color yellow. While the former matched her yellow pants to her purse, the latter wore a monochrome suit, pairing it with purple heels and a white coat. Those who prefer neutral shades, however, might find themselves gravitating towards Haifa Wehbe’s look. The Lebanese star championed faux fur in a long brown and beige hooded coat, which she paired with black tights and metallic silver boots.
Scroll to see all the looks.
Nojoud Alrumaihi. Photo: Instagram.com
Karen Wazen. Photo: Instagram.com
Dima Al Sheikhly. Photo: Instagram.com
Diala Makki. Photo: Instagram.com
Rawdah Mohamed. Photo: Instagram.com
Haifa Wehbe. Photo: Instagram.com
Ola Farahat. Photo: Instagram.com
Reem Alswaidi. Photo: Instagram.com
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Discover how, the whirlwind Saudi marketeer that is Nojoud Alrumaihi, winds down in style.
Nojoud Alrumaihi wearing a Remain outfit with shoes from Sergio Rossi and a S’uvimol bag
ALL IN THE DETAILS
Saudi marketing specialist Nojoud AlRumaihi is one half of a burgeoning event management company that she founded with her husband, Abdullah Al Rasheed. “Upbeat KSA is named after my husband’s character. He is an exuberant person with more than 10 years of experience in the events industry. He was the driver behind it, and I came in as the marketeer and content creator. Together, we want to create events that are full of life and experiences,” she says. With a degree in business management and marketing from Riyadh’s Al Yamamah University and a master’s in international marketing from London’s King’s Business School, it’s easy to see how her education has influenced her latest venture. “Understanding people’s psychology, how they behave as consumers, and how everything has an effect on communication, made me want to dive deeper into the field,” she says.
SET THE TONE
Alrumaihi in a dress she created with Saudi designer Hadeel Al Hussain and a Bottega Veneta bag
“Abayas are a world that I absolutely love,” says AlRumaihi. Her collection includes everyday ones as well as formal, floor-sweeping robes. “I love wearing Nouf AlSudairi abayas. They’re so easy to style as they are minimal with excellent fabrics that go with everything,” she says of the Saudi brand’s signature linen pieces. Her closet also includes artful tie-dye abayas by Dye Down, tailored overlays by Alanoud AlSalem, and embroidered designs by Nihad Bakhrebah. She has a tonal approach to piecing together her looks. “I love to style abayas in a monochromatic way, so I focus on basic wear underneath and neutral colors,” she says. Her single-color habits go back to her first memory with fashion. “My family took us on a trip to Mecca for Umrah, and I remember being mad at my mom for not matching my hijab to my shoes. Horrible, I know, but I was a child who loved coordinating my clothes.”
OWN THE NIGHT
In a dress from 16Arlington, wearing her Bespoke wedding jewelry, as well as a Chaumet ring and Cartier bracelet
When it comes to eveningwear, AlRumaihi lights up a room with her repertoire of dresses drenched in beadwork and jumpsuits that make for an instant statement. “I have a Ralph Lauren dress that I love. I couldn’t resist not getting it when I saw it on the runway. It was a golden dream – the length, the straps, and the femininity in it is just astonishing,” she says. A black feather-trimmed 16Arlington dress shares closet space with a striking Alex Perry orange jumpsuit. “It’s so bold and chic. No one does shoulders like Alex Perry,” she adds. A closet filled with an ultimate supply of glamour, her fringed Hamda Al Fahim cocktail number and a powder blue Razan Alazzouni tulle gown mingle and shine in her wardrobe with Ashi Studio, Rami Kadi, and Maison Yeye pieces.
RHYTHM IN ROUTINE
AlRumaihi’s personal style and signature makeup share a common thread: effortless and polished. “I’m drawn to brown, earthy tones and lots of mascara. Light lipstick on the lips, so the focus can be on the eyes,” she says. However, her winning formula for a radiant complexion starts skin deep. “I’ve been using Sisley for two years now, and I can’t get enough of it. I use the Black Rose collection, and I do mean all of it: the face oil, moisturizer, and eye cream.” She credits SkinCeuticals for clearing up her skin, and using her cold ice rollers that she keeps in her freezer every other night of the week remains an essential part of her beauty routine.
OFF THE GRID
Christian Dior shoes and bag
To unwind, AlRumaihi switches to airplane mode. Instead of scrolling through social media, she incorporates a digital detox in her day. “Tossing my phone aside for a while is the best mental escape for me,” she explains. To further relax, AlRumaihi slips into a Daily Sleeper dress or a silk MaxMara loungewear set and indulges in the calming and therapeutic properties of aromatherapy at home. “I have a ritual of unwinding at the end of the day with an air diffuser and essential oils such as lavender and lemongrass. Sometimes I’ll combine it with a massage, which does wonders to relieve stress,” she says.
Between building a successful startup, being tapped by Christian Dior to front a campaign in her home country, and press trips with Van Cleef & Arpels and Hermès, AlRumaihi is a mother to her three-year old daughter, Lulua. “I don’t think the perfect balance exists, unfortunately. Something has to give,” she shares. “Sometimes I have so much work that keeps me from spending time with my daughter, and sometimes I put everything on hold just to talk to her, or take her out. That’s what I do to find balance.” AlRumaihi calls her daughter every two hours and has a rule not to work past 8pm so she can tuck Lulua in for bedtime. “In my line of work, there’s a lot of traveling involved and that’s when I feel miserable the most as a mother. I’m so thankful to have a family that are so loving and supportive, so I know she is in good hands, safe, and sound.”
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Originally published in the December 2020 Issue of Vogue Arabia