CREAM is easily one of the favorite additions to the Middle Eastern fashion scene.
It is a multi brand, trendsetter boutique well known for its diverse, contemporary style and handpicked designer items.
Located at Stars Avenue mall in Jeddah, CREAM is where pioneering designers come together to give the Saudi fashion scene their very best.
“CREAM is a place that has talented creators regardless of their age or nationality,” said Dana Malhas, founder of CREAM.
She said CREAM stores everything a young lady needs from clothes, handbags to magazines and nail polish.
One can find a unique collection from both “up and coming” designers and the best of the established ones.
To put it simply, Malhas said, CREAM is a boutique that sells style and not just fashion.
Like many others, CREAM is her fashion haven. “It is where I collect everything I love as I travel the world.
“I buy for CREAM like I buy for my own closet. Wherever I go, I keep an eye open for the latest trends.”
And Malhas keeps an eye out for items that are unusual, classic and much like those that describe the essence of CREAM. “I like items that differentiate our boutique and differentiate every person who buys from CREAM.”
Young Saudi women are moving toward pursuing fashion retail as a career.
Malhas said she encourages newcomers and admires everyone who fights to be in this fierce industry.
“It is definitely a lot of hard work, you will never go on a worry-free vacation.
“Your mind will always be working, but it rewarding too as it is truly a blessing to able to do what you love.”
According to Malhas, designers who have changed the course of Arab fashion are Loodyana, LUM & Lady Fozaza from Saudi Arabia, Aila from Kuwait, ESSA from Dubai and LyaLya from Lebanon.
She mentioned the trend in the market tend to differentiate between Saudi designers who adopt a feminine subtle look, from others who design items that are more edgy and daring.
Most of the bags and accessories sold at CREAM are works of local designers hailing from Lebanon, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, UAE and Iraq.
Clothes and shoes are designed by international designers from Paris, London, LA, NYC, Italy, Romania, Bangkok, among others.
Currently, the boutique comprises 90 percent exclusive items that can only be found at CREAM in Saudi Arabia.
Some of CREAM’s best sellers are “Lady Fozaza” blazers by the Saudi fashion diva Al Anoud Badr.
“These blazers have received unbelievable local and international recognition,” said Malhas.
Apart from stocking Fozaza’s exclusive collection, CREAM also houses exclusive “Aila handbags,” sported by many celebrities and fashionistas, from Kuwaiti/Palestinian designer Amal Khoursheid along with the latest “LyaLya” handbags.
“We were actually the first boutique ever to stock this new upcoming brand.”
As a fashion buyer, Malhas told Saudi Gazette: “It’s definitely a lot of fun to do what you love.
“But it is also a lot of hard work because you want to make sure it is perfect, everything is flawless and up-to-date.
“I am very hands-on, so for me it’s all about the details and seizing opportunities at the right time.”
Malhas said traveling, discovering designers, adopting new ones, signing deals with famous ones, taking a risk with some are all part of the job and she loves it.
Like most women, she admits: “Buying is actually my favorite part of my job!”
Discussing trends of the season, Malhas’ advises Saudi fashionistas: “Pastel colors are still very fashionable, but at a different tone this season – yellow actually is very in.
“Preppy looks are still popular and so are obnoxious prints and high shoulder pads. Pattern and color blocking are trending and pencil skirts are also a big hit.
“I personally think this season it comes down to two looks – the feminine grace Kelly or the loud Lady Gaga – depending on your style.”
Malhas is currently busy preparing for next year and has high hopes to live up to as CREAM lovers wait for the upcoming Spring/Summer 2013 collection.
“Thankfully, CREAM has now become a trendsetter in Jeddah. My plan is to hopefully establish CREAM as a trendsetter in the Middle East,” said Malhas.
– By Mariam Nihal, Saudi Gazette