The international fashion week season is on a roll right now and two Pakistani models are just about to see it up-close.
As we write this, models Mushk Kaleem and Alicia Khan are setting their sights on the lofty runway of Milan Fashion Week (MFW). Mushk is already en route to one of the world’s most fashionable cities while Alicia is possibly busy packing.
Together, both models are going to be seen at Milan Fashion Week on the evening of September 21st, walking for Italian designer Stella Jean.
“I am excited but I am also humbled,” enthused Mushk, speaking exclusively to Images. “Milan is one of the world’s most prestigious fashion hubs and it is an honor to be part of the show and to represent my country there.”
How did Mushk and Alicia manage to get selected for the fashion week? We were, of course, aware of Italian designer Stella Jean visiting Pakistan earlier this year. The designer had met with government representatives and particularly observed the craft indigenous to Pakistan’s North.
The possibility was aired out that Stella may proceed to incorporate Pakistani handicraft or fabric in an upcoming collection. This is precisely what the designer has done.
According to our sources, Northern handicraft techniques will be seen in Stella’s collection that will be showcased at MFW. Amidst a pool of international models, two of our very own will be seen wearing the clothes.
“We were all told to send our portfolios,” explains Mushk. “It was a long process because we had to send in very detailed measurements. There is a certain standard size and height that has to be met for a model to be accepted into the fashion week. We also sent images from the ramp, fashion shoots and videos. Then, finally, Alicia and I got selected.”
Initially, though, four models had been shortlisted. “Things were confusing for a while,” reveals Alicia. “I think the other two girls thought that nothing would work out and they backed out from MFW. Even I was not sure that I would end up going but I wanted to give it my best shot."
"I changed my schedule accordingly, just in case I would luck out. I didn’t want to have any regrets. I am so glad that I made the effort – I had to make visits to the Italian embassy, figure out documentation, send in my portfolio. But it has all worked out.”
Why did Stella want Pakistani models to be part of her show? While we are yet to communicate with the designer, it was probably because of the Pakistani elements that will be seen in her designs.
“Stella’s clothes will have a lot of Pakistani elements in them,” confirms Alicia.
“It’s a great opportunity and I want it to be a recurring one,” says Mushk. “Let’s hope that everything works out.”
What will Mushk and Alicia’s schedule be like in Milan? Evidently, both models have received invites to exclusive soirees and meet-and-greets.
Mushk will be arriving relatively early for fittings while Alicia only managed to get a later ticket. Landing into Milan on the 19th, she will be rushing through fittings, rehearsals and then, be part of the final show on the 21st.
“We’ll be there for a week and then we’ll be flying back, right in time for rehearsals for the PFDC L’Oreal Paris Bridal Week,” says Mushk.
From glamour on the international runway to the heavy-duty bridal glitz that is intrinsic to Pakistan, these girls are on a roll.
“It’s important to keep trying, to never lose focus or get discouraged,” says Alicia. “Anything is possible if you work hard towards it.”
Spoken like a true model just about to make her MFW debut. We’ll be rooting for both our girls, through the far reaches of social media!