Ok! So continuing from last night…my appointment with Karma (fashion label well-known Pakistani designer Maheen Kardar). Karma was located in Defense, a world apart from the bazaars of Anarkali.
We went up the stairs into their lounge to find plush rich coloured furniture, beautiful decor and a lovely sales associate by the name of Huma. Huma was awesome. She sat my mom, sister and my cousin’s wife down in the lounge, and asked me if I was looking for an outfit for the “first day” or the “second day”. I told her the first (the main wedding day) which is typically when you wear red. She then proceeded to show me her 2013 bridal collection. All the research that I had been doing beforehand instantly came to life. The beautiful colours, fabrics, kaam (design work)… The entire experience was so exciting… (note that I’ve never experienced Pakistan in this way before. My family doesn’t have their own driver, so before, every time I’d visit, I’d either get around the city on the back of my cousins motor bike (side straddle styles), a rickshaw, or occasionally in a relative’s car. So this whole commissioning a driver for the month and going to designer appointments is all so fancy to me 🙂
So yes, after Huma lay out the collection, I tried on a few outfits, and she was super helpful, told me what would suit my body and what wouldn’t (apparently I’m “too busty” for an empire waist) and helped me realize what I liked and didn’t. I really appreciated her honesty, and despite the fact that we were in a beautiful designers studio, she kept it really real and was down to earth. Oh and then she brought out four coffees made from scratch which were absolutely divine.
The entire experience was my first bridal appointment and experience in Pakistan, and it felt pretty perfect! The only thing I guess I had anticipated was that their would me more pieces in the collection, but I realized they make a basic 6-8 bridal outfits each season, and then brides customize their cuts and colours.
And the prices? 85000 RPS for a beautiful outfit (non-bridal), which is about $850, and 3.5 lakh for the bridal dress that I tried on about $3500. That’s one thing that I learned, by the way, before I came – I had thought Pakistani prices would be much lower for bridal wear, but no, prices have gone crazy here, especially when you get into very high end designers (they can go up to 12lakh – $12000!)
So that was Karma! Yesterday we did more areas of Lahore – the well known MM Alam Road (lots of designer shops) and the shopping bazaar Liberty (which is massive) and I had an appointment with the designer Kamiar Rokni for my 2nd day bridal outfit….all 3 of which deserve their own write up and I will try to find time to do soon. But for now, more shopping awaits!
Below is an old pic of their studio that I got from their FB page…that white couch has now been upholstered to a rich plum…as seen in the photo with my mom laying on it!