Every fashion designer surely has his or her own preferred aesthetic. For Syaiful Baharim, it is defined by a woman who exudes confidence in the way she carries herself. His Raya 2016 collection adheres to the idea.
“Opinionated yet graceful, modest yet chic, she balances work, life and family – she strives to have it all,” he explains, regarding being inspired by his take of the “quintessential modern Malay woman”.
Syaiful’s choice of campaign faces for the collection happens to be actresses Nelydia and Uqasha Senrose. The sisters were chosen because he regards them as stylish, as well as go-getters in their careers.
The two have actively appeared in Malaysian television dramas and films. They also boast a large influence when it comes to social media, with more than 3.8 million total followers on their instagram accounts.
“Nelydia and Uqasha share a unique and very personal relationship with their online following, and so they are the perfect choice for this year’s campaign as fresh faces that define the modern Malay woman,” says Syaiful.
According to Nelydia, 21, Syaiful has always worked with celebrities as his muses and campaign faces in the past. She totally loves his designs and was flattered when asked to work with him. On his Raya collection, she quips, “Syaiful brings in his ruffles and frills very subtly, as his silhouette remains simple and basic. From baju kurung panjang and baju kurung kedah, to the jubah cutting. He managed to marry the two very well.”
Twenty-four-year-old Aqasha states that Raya is no longer how it was before. She also thinks that ladies can now experiment with their clothes as long as they still keep with the culture and look modest.
“Times have changed and so has the Malay woman… The quintessential modern Malay woman is very forward in everything she does, be it in her business sense and most importantly, her dress sense,” she adds.
Syaiful is mostly known for his clean-cut, layer-by-layer style. His latest Raya designs feature soft bohemian ruffles and frills in muted hues. Staying away from prints this time round, he has instead, opted for a more basic palette.
Where other designers chose loud embellishments and lots of details, Syaiful has kept it minimalistic yet completely versatile. It is his flair for effortlessly merging Eastern silhouettes with Western styles that yields gorgeous results.
Syaiful Baharim’s Raya 2016 collection is available for purchase on fashionvalet.com.