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WE WON MOST CREATIVE OUTFIT AT STYLE STAKES WITH A FULLY SUSTAINABLE LOOK!

SUSTAINABLE FASHION WINS STYLE STAKES AT DUBAI WORLD CUP

Yes! And we are over the Moon because we did it respecting our values. Only using sustainable fashion! It couldn’t be any other way coming from us, right? Dubai World Cup is such a huge event. Let me walk you through how the idea was born, how it evolved and grew, all our hiccups, and how special it was for us to win this award!

COFFEE BAG DRESS WINS MOST CREATIVE LOOK AT DWC
All smiles! In the pic, Miah Llanes and Araceli Gallego.

A BIT ABOUT STYLE STAKES

Every year our beloved city of Dubai is proud to host the Dubai World Cup. And every year, there is a competition happening alongside the horses, selecting the best in different style categories. And that is Style Stakes!

There are all these categories, but we only competed in Most Creative Hat, Most Creative Outfit and  Best Dressed lady.

  • Most Creative Hat
  • Most Creative Outfit
  • Best Dressed Lady
  • Best Dress Gentleman
  • and, Best Dress Couple

And you know what? We got finalists as Most Creative Hat and won first prize in the Most Creative Outfit! Yuhuuuuuuuu!!!! You can not imagine how happy we were. I was so happy that I started crying! They were happy tears, but I couldn’t stop sobbing! The last time I cried like this, was when I met my little one for the first time!

We worked for months on this look. Everything was done from scratch and it started as an idea. Remember the Green Carpet Awards? I know Meydan is not the Oscars, but this is something that I always say. “At Goshopia, you can find items to go to the beach, to the office or the Oscars.” The point is that sustainable fashion is still fashion, it is very stylish and the only thing that changes is the process, the way that materials get sourced and transformed into your beautiful new pieces.

UPCYCLED DRESS WINS STYLE STAKES AT DUBAI WORLD CUP
Walking to receive the Awards… Miah was so happy! And I started crying! 💃💃💃

PREPARATION OF THE WINNING LOOK

The pieces part of this look are full of meaning and beautiful stories. A common effort by people that truly believe that fashion needs to slow down and become eco-friendly. And who do you think that people are? I, Araceli Gallego had the idea and started coordinating with Sylvia Calvo, and Ines Montesinos, who put together their respective designs. And Miah Llanes, Silke Styles, and Tristan Czar came to help on the day to make it glow and shine!

We had the conversation going in a WhatsApp group and I got even to meet in person when Ines flew to Dubai to participate in Expo. Initially, we had a different hat for our look. The first hat was exhibited at Expo as a work of craftsmanship, showcasing the use of natural materials and traditional techniques. From Dubai, it was supposed to fly to Paris for an exhibition and back to Dubai, but it got lost on the way!!!!

Imagine our stress when the hat was nowhere to be found! So, after zillions of calls and follow-ups, we decided that it was better to just do a new one following the same philosophy. And so our finalist hat came about! And let me tell you, it is so true that everything happens for a reason. I love this hat even more than the initial one- and at the time I thought that to be impossible!

OUR HAND MADE HAT- RACE READY!
Simply beautiful! The Hat of Ines Montesinos Vilar got so much attention and was a finalist as Best Hat!

 

This fabulous hat uses haute couture sinamay and buntal -both natural palm fibers. The hat is to be worn vertically and is embellished with Faisal feathers and rachis that are shaped by hand using vapor and traditional techniques. The delicate flower is made in silk organza and every petal is molded patiently by hand. Even the Montesino Vilar logo at the back is done by artisans in metal. Isn’t it the most gorgeous hat ever!!! Let me tell you that is very comfortable and easy to wear too.

SUSTAINABLE FASHION WINS!

Now, we need to talk about the dress. We went with an A-shape silhouette as we wanted the dress to be classic and timeless, elegant and sophisticated. Seeing our research Pinterest board we saw that was a winning shape, but also we needed to respect the rules and protocol of Style Takes as a competition in terms of length and how revealing it could or couldn’t be. Every race has different rules in terms of dressing and we learnt that for example, in the UK, there are even different set of rules also depending on how close you are from the Queen’s circle.

Our winning dress is made out of used coffee bags. Coffee bags are made of jute, a natural material that is biodegradable and can have so many more lives. The bags become gorgeous and unique dresses at the Atelier of Sylvia Calvo in Barcelona. We always say it, but reusing discarded materials in clever ways, saves natural resources and energy. Upcycling can be really cool as you can see.

FULLY SUSTAINABLE LOOK WINS STYLE STAKES
Sustainable Style… Presente!

 

The flowers detailing the dress are hand-cut from the coffee bags hand-sewn to the lower frontal side of the dress. The center of each flower is hand embroidered to the dress with 3 different natural precious stones: Mother-of-Pearl, Citrin, and Green Agate. The gemstones are natural so they have beautiful properties upon the person wearing them. Maybe that is why Miah looked so happy the whole day, even if the heels and the heat were pressing.

We get asked lots of times if the dress is itchy as it is coming from jute. And the answer is no. It is super comfortable and not itchy at all. You see, under the dress, there is a lining that not only allows the dress to have a nice fit but also makes sure you have zero itch. And I know this because I have my own Jute dress too and I love it!

EVERY LITTLE DETAIL COUNTS

Every accessory has also a beautiful story behind too. The bag for example is made out of wood. Leftovers from a furniture factory, now turned into a luxury item and coveted by many celebrities. You can get yours here or visit our showroom to see the available ones for quick purchase.

The earrings are gold plated and showcase a Tiger’s eye stone ring. It is all from a socially driven brand called Fugeelah. Funds from the sale of this gorgeous jewelry collection go to support a school of refugees in Malaysia. The bracelets are all handmade by a ladies’ artisan association from Morocco.

All the pieces of the look you can find and shop at Goshopia.com!

SUSTAINABLE FASHION WINS STYLE STAKES AT DUBAI WORLD CUP
Enjoying the great vibes at the race!

BEHIND THE SUSTAINABLE LOOK THERE ARE SO MANY MESSAGES

I wanted to break many stereotypes with this and Style Stakes was the perfect place! Fashion is said to be the 2nd largest pollutant industry in the world, only behind Oil & Gas. Yes! I know you might need time to digest that piece of news. That is why at Goshopia we focus on slow, sustainable, and socially responsible fashion. Sustainable fashion has the stigma of being “just too comfy”, ” just too loose” or ” even just too boring”… People might think you can not wear them on certain occasions. But that is far from the truth!

We want to show the world you can wear your values, no matter the occasion… Sustainability is about the process. It is about quality and longevity, about good materials, innovation, and design. You can look amazing and wear pieces that have respect and love for people and the planet. But, I wanted to break – crush if I might- even more stereotypes… at least one more!

MOST CREATIVE OUTFIT HAPPENS TO BE FULLY SUSTAINABLE

Miah Llanes, our model for that special day and good friend, is from the Philippines. Over 20% of the Dubai population is from there and yet we don’t see too much representation in competitions like this. We chose her because she is an environmentalist and understands what we are about. She spoke beautifully. The Style Stakes presenter asked her… “so Why Sustainable Fashion?” And she replied- “It should be our number one priority to respect the Earth”.

SO, AFTER STYLE STAKES, WHAT IS NEXT?

After the Dubai World Cup, it was time to reflect and move on to our next thing! … Fashion Revolution Week! Come and join us for the annual event that this year will be in hybrid form. Yes, the panels and talks will be online but one day, the grand finale day… will be in person! Don’t we all miss seeing and hugging our people?

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BE HAT READY FOR THE RACES!👒

Best hats fascinators in Dubai World Cup Meydan

Today is International Hat day and we thought that it is about time to write an article about this iconic accessory. Back in the day, men and women wore it on a daily. It served as protection from the sun, and to symbolize status. Now it is a special piece for special occasions: weddings, high-end gatherings, and events like the horse races. Also, as in Dubai, we get to enjoy the Dubai World Cup every year it is always great to talk about the fantastic hats, fascinators, turbans, and headpieces you could wear. That is the reason why we decided to pay tribute to our headpieces. Because they are gorgeous but they can also be slow, sustainable, and socially responsible!

We got to ask some questions to our Goshopia resident milliner: Ines Montesinos. Based in Spain, creating amazing hats and fascinators have been in her family for generations. She helps us understand better what materials and work are behind each of her pieces.

After that, we share with you some very unique turbans you can wear too to have a unique look. Are you ready to turn heads? We are for sure!

Best hats fascinators in Dubai World Cup Meydan

THE INTERVIEW: INES MONTESINOS MILLINERY

Ines, How long have you been making hats?

As a company, Montesinos Vilar was founded more than 10 years ago, in 2010. But this is a family tradition business. In 1900, María Dolores Ruiz Echevarría -our great-great-grandmother- created her hat shop in Paris. Her legacy of style and savoir-faire continues today with her great-great-granddaughters.

How did you learn millinery?

The art of millinery is something innate in us. Since we were little we have made hair ornaments for friends and for ourselves. It was part of our games. Over time and in a very organic way we considered doing some training.

During the training, you discover that the only thing your heart asks of you is to experiment with textures, pigments, fabrics … I guess it is the benefit of being self-taught growing up using trial and error. For us, it is total happiness to get in the flow and start creating. Time flies for us while creating between iron plates and silks. You feel that your soul is linked with love and respect to this beautiful and creative craft that our great-great-grandmother gave us.

Her teachings live on and we keep on learning and exploring every day. We feel like apprentices with the same illusion as the first day. In our workshop, we continue to work with the same traditional millinery techniques with which our great-great-grandmother worked.  Even some of our tools are inherited from her Paris shop such as the iron plates.

Best hats fascinators in Dubai World Cup Meydan

SUSTAINABLE HAT MAKING

What materials do you normally use?

The materials we use are natural fibers such as sinamay. It is a very fine fabric that comes from the abaca, pita, and banana fiber. It can be mixed with silk or cotton and it is originally from the Philippines. We also use Capelina from Panama, woven made by textile artisans in the Equator.

The pigments we use are mostly from plants (from leaves, stems, fruits, and also roots).

Best hats fascinators in Dubai World Cup Meydan

Are your hats unique pieces?

Montesinos Vilar Millinery creates an annual collection, but we also do customizations and even create designs from scratch upon demand. We have clients who like to combine for example the wing of a particular pamela hat, the cup of another, and the ornament of another, so they create their own design.

Also, some clients show us their desired look (dress, shoe, bag …) and we create a hat that will go and complement the rest of the style.

Best hats fascinators in Dubai World Cup Meydan

How can we take care of the pieces, once purchased?

Hats are delicate. For the pieces to last over time they must be properly stored in their box, wrapped in silk paper. Inside the box, we always add a Laurel leaf as it is a natural moth repellent. By doing this, your hat will be enjoyed for generations to come.

If the hat or headpiece suffers any deformity, you can contact our workshop and we will advise you what to make for your specific piece.

AMAZING TURBANS TO WEAR AND IMPRESS

Turbans are also headpieces we love. Not only because they are part of our heritage but also because they look so good and are so elegant! Check these we have selected from our luxury edition. Aren’t they lovely?

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