Thirty-year-old Israeli fashion designer Shahar Avnet's handmade embroideries, vibrant-colored ruffles and painterly whimsy took to Tel Aviv Fashion Week last week and captured the audience. The designer recently crafted signature dresses for Beyonce, featured in the photographs of her new album "Everything Is Love" with Jay Z as well as for her last tour.
Two years ago, Shahar Avnet was still a very-young-and-very-green fashion student who had just graduated from Shenker College of Engineering and Design, with hardly any industry knowledge. But this past Wednesday she put on a true spectacle of colors, fabrics and humans on the runway at the Tel Aviv Fashion Week – and she is at a true high in her career.
Over the phone shortly after the show, Avnet still sounds ecstatic with adrenaline: “This was my first solo show. No one hosted me at their venue, and that allowed me, for the first time, to bring to life the kind of event that I perceived as a fashion show. 100% freedom.”
More than anything, it is clear this young designer is in her element when she practices bravery. The show was abundant in tulle, silk, vinyl and nylon, and rich in neon and metallic colors, uncharacteristic of the Tel Aviv's otherwise monochromatic style. The show featured no professional models, but people of all shapes, colors and ages and many dancers who broke out in mini-dance routines mid-show.
Avnet says there’s a complete storyline behind it: “The collection is called ‘It’s a Love Story’ and it’s about my relationship with my boyfriend. That’s one of the reasons there were dancers. It’s about great love as well as a lot of heartbreak. For instance, all the silver and rougher materials are from something I wrote about our first kiss, that I felt was like true magic,” she explains.
The show featured extravagant tulle dresses that any wearer would be able to peacock in a crowd – similar in their design to two dresses Avnet designed and were worn by none-other than Beyoncé herself in concert last year. There were also long maxi dresses and a kimono-inspired robe, and colorful bomber jackets over delicate silk pieces, along with vinyl and nylon raincoats and a variety of wedding gowns with a twist, like turquoise and hot-pink edges.
Despite this one fully-packed festival of fashion, Avnet is still only in her beginning stages as a designer. When asked about the future, her tone becomes excited with anticipation. “First of all, I want to continue expanding and growing with what I do now. Internationally, I’d love to see my clothes in every major city around the world. I also have my new bridal collection to move forward with, and of course, the colorful collection. I’d love to see that colorfulness that I use in pieces that are flattering, unashamed, and worn daily in a present way by women.”
In collaboration with Dana Sapir and Rotem Wiener Tchaikovsky, who created, produced and directed the artistic content display during Tel Aviv Fashion Week and
Production by Q'uan - love.production.house, in charge of the choreography, original music and video art.