It’s been a while since I last posted here, I read a quote by Urdu philosopher John Elia that roughly translates into ‘A lot of people need to be reading but they are writing’ and I acted upon it. Rightfully so for past few months have been gradual realization of my ignorance. I have been reading extensively on fashion and apparel history to counter that. Also times are changing the proverbial pots that used to call kettle black have resorted to same ‘monkey business’ for one. But copycats continued to flourish in various forms and ironies abound as well.
Ironically,last week the Federal Investigation Agency FIA raided the shop of a cloth merchant in Tariq Road for producing fake Sana Safinaz joras, victory for Copyrights Act proponents! It’s probably the first such arrest after Oxford University Press Pakistan got a printer arrested for making pirated copies of their books. But what an irony it is that Sana Safinaz ha ha ha hmm.
Lets start with the one that created the most buzz, little known designer Ayesha Khurram plagiarizing illustration off of instagram and worst of all the affected illustrator Antonio Soares himself started calling her out. I am sure had it been a local artist people would have been like the artist should be thankful, designer made the illustrations famous. It was hypocritical that she was singled out while a lot of other get away with it but then she also served as a Principal of AIFD(one of the two premier fashion schools in KHI)
Speaking of highstreet there was red camouflage at Gulabo referencing Valentino‘s streetwear hit and the flamingo print at Sapphire . Kudos to design student who asked to keep his identity private and to The Style Journal who spotted the latter few months ago.
Then there is Zara Shajahan,a designer thought to posses a lot of potential by every print journalist also rolled out Lawn print copied from Emilio Pucci Pre Fall 2014 collection. There were no rebuttals or anything. Just unabashed smugness as she took to her social media to bash people making lawn replicas.Luxe Pakistan was vigilant enough to post that even her critically acclaimed bug print screamed Tory Burch Fall 2013.
Tabassum Mughal one of aamiriat‘s regulars was in press the whole year, somehow even the people who deemed copied lawn no big deal were tempted to write about her copying a piece from Dolce and Gabbana Spring 2015 collection. But Luxe Pakistan went a step further and found her copying bridals from Sabyasachi from across the border.
Umaima Mustafa, Threads & Motifs and Aleena & Fareena are all set to take the crown of most copied design from Balmain to Roberto Cavalli Spring 2015.Luxe Pakistan was at it again. In the retrospect I think it’s a good PR tactic to copy a well-known label and to go from relative obscurity to notoriety and fame.
Nida Azwer who was clever enough to get the copied jora off the Internet last time around, photocopied another one and managed to show it in her collection titled ‘French Trellis‘ at FPW SS 2015. I had waited long and hard to let this pass but then if we are counting them all why spare one from Alexander McQueen Pre-Fall 2013 collection.
When I started spotting copies there were long articles written in defence of high-street, democratization of fashion and Schumer Bill of Copyright in Fashion but at the end of the day people don’t get in to nitty gritties if they are paying premium for perceived exclusivity they expect authenticity in design. But these are just the tip of the iceberg, we fashion ‘bloggers’ are barely scratching the surface of it all. It brings me immense joy when other people spot such cases, it is sort of comforting to know that people are watching and are not afraid to call spade a spade.