The Names To Know Now

From unconventional shapes and cuts to cult-like status, these are the designers disrupting the fashion game as we know it


Words by Maddison Glendinning


Where art and fashion collide

It’s not hard to see why Seoul-born Rejina Pyo is fast becoming a favourite among the street style set. The Central Saint Martins graduate, who interned with Roksanda Illincic before starting her own label, cleverly fuses the worlds of art and architecture with fashion to create pieces that are structurally sophisticated with solid sartorial impact. Statement sleeves are a brand signature (be still our beating hearts) and each piece is designed to work with well with others, meaning you’ll never run out of ways to wear them. OK, ladies now let’s get in formation…

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Walk this way…

Maryam Nassir Zadeh opened her eponymous store in New York’s Lower East Side in 2008 – and hasn’t put a stylish foot wrong yet. She launched her own line of ready-to-wear and footwear in early 2013, capturing the hearts (and wallets) of the fash pack from her very first collection. Expertly mixing NYC cool with a seasonless appeal, Maryam’s pieces deliver practicality that still packs a pretty punch.

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Simplicity redefined

Of his own label, Petar Petrov has said, “I try to design with my personal idea of a modern woman in mind… what they share is independence, individuality and a taste for the unexpected,” and naturally, we here at The Modist instantly relate to his celebration of that woman. The Ukrainian designer studied under the tutelage of some of fashion’s most recognisable names, including Viktor & Rolf and Raf Simons, during his college years in Vienna and went on to create his own brand of elevated luxury items that, whilst simple in form, are anything but basic.

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The tale of two cities

Meeting as fashion students in Milan, Riccardo Audisio and Yago Goicoechea quickly became friends with a common goal – to launch a successful fashion line. And, after teaming up to launch Taller Marmo in 2013, they did just that. Fusing the old-world elegance of Europe with the fresh modernity and rich culture of the Middle East, the pair won the regional final for the International Woolmark Prize in 2015. A refreshing take on fashion with a considered use of decadent textiles and playful prints, their pieces are the ones that have everyone asking, “Where did you get that from?”

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Welcome to the future

Lebanese born Farah Masri was an architect by trade until she decided to launch jewellery brand Hooked | HKD. Her past experience greatly influences her present day offerings, with each of her pieces essentially a wearable sculpture. Fluid shapes and avant-garde forms are integral to the brand’s Sci-Fi inspired DNA, and the pieces – made from rose gold, rhodium, gold and pearls – are created through a combination of 3D technology and traditional jewellery design. This is tomorrow’s jewellery, today.

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The epitome of elegance

Celebrating refined sophistication, Madiyah Al Sharqi’s eponymous label has continued to find favour amongst fashion’s elite since its launch in 2012. Following the designer’s graduation from ESMOD Paris, in 2013 she was a finalist in the International Woolmark Prize and was also named by Vogue Italia as a Vogue Talent. Delicate lace, flattering silhouettes and an unbridled celebration of femininity come together each season for the Fujairah-based designer making her a Middle Eastern red carpet veteran. Her royally-approved separates work from day-to-night, whilst marvellously modern eveningwear beautifully delivers a heavy dose of modest elegance.

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A marriage of old and new

Founded by Sean Barron and Jamie Mazur, RE/DONE is the go-to denim brand for It girls. The pair started the label in Los Angeles in 2014 after careers in business (Barron founded and sold Joie and Mazur ran Underground Denim which held sample sales of designer jeans at college campuses) and promptly won the favour of Hollywood’s denimophiles. Crafting of-the-moment silhouettes from vintage Levi’s and therefore eliminating the fit problems oft associated with vintage apparel, the pair has nailed Insta-worthy denim. #NoFilterNecessary

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Detail oriented

If you’re in the market for luxury leather with one-of-a-kind detailing, then Parisian-based label Nour Hammour is your answer. Dealing only in leather jackets, the brand is the brainchild of Nour Hammour and Erin Conry Webb and counts Blake Lively, Kendall Jenner and Rosie Huntington-Whiteley amongst its ever-growing fans. Originally a made-to-order operation, the pair has since ventured into producing its pieces for a wider market, though the designs are far from mass-produced. With an array of designs and colourways, the brand celebrates the power of individuality and each jacket is guaranteed to make a statement for years to come. If you’re anything like us, you may never want to take it off.

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The great Dane

Scandi-cool is the name of Ganni designer Ditte Reffstrup’s game. Based out of Copenhagen, the brand’s offering brims with easy-to-wear silhouettes that act as building blocks for a functional but fashionable wardrobe. Classic shirting is emboldened with eyecatching prints, whilst jackets, sweaters and tunics are elegantly embellished for added oomph. Plus, with a price point that’s oh-so accessible, you’ll be hard-pressed to stop at just one piece. Trust us…

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Man, I feel like a woman…

Having worked as a buyer ahead of starting her own label Racil in 2015, Racil Chalhoub has an innate knowledge of what women want. Growing up in Lebanon and then spending her formative years in Paris, Racil was heavily influenced by French fashion, and in particular, YSL’s Le Smoking tuxedo. Striking the perfect balance – “In a tuxedo, you’re never too under dressed or overdressed” –  and serving as a hardworking, stylish addition to any wardrobe, the not-so humble tuxedo was the reason Racil launched her eponymous label. Focusing on elevated suiting and expert tailoring, Racil presents the modern woman with a myriad of closet essentials, each as chic as the last.

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