In search of a silver lining: Sara Onsi depicts hardships with bolder colours

Ingy Deif, Monday 7 Sep 2020

In her latest collection, Cairo-based designer Sara Onsi paints the difficult times of 2020 in a better light

motifs of social distancing by Sara Onsi
Motifs by Sara Onsi

Ask the fashion savvy about the creations of Sara Onsi and affiliations with Haute Couture, fine detailing and statement bridal wear comes instantly to mind.

Another fashion name once more proves that this industry can be very much in touch with the real world, taking actual steps to bring enlightenment and beauty to the forefront.

motifs of social distancing by Sara Onsi

The year 2015 marked the beginning, when the passionate Sara Onsi opened her own place showcasing her fashion creations after deciding to follow her degree in business with deeper studies of the fashion industry.

Sara, born in 1988 in Cairo, developed a sense of creativity and love for fashion and style that grew with her along the way. She obtained her degree in business and channeled her studies and passion to the field of design and clothes.

In 2017, the ONSI label made a debut in London Fashion Week with the Spring Summer collection, followed in 2018 by a debut in Paris Fashion Week, which marked a turning point and brought Onsi broader recognition in the region and worldwide.

Soon afterwards, her signature bridal masterpieces, along with her other creations, started marking their place in international shops worldwide and celebrities showed up on the red carpet and various events flaunting her signature and statement gowns.

motifs of social distancing by Sara Onsi

In 2019, the brand started more expansions by launching the Prêt A Porter niche line ONSI in the brand’s first runway show in her home country, another segment hitting the Middle Eastern markets powerfully.

In February 2020, the designer celebrated her debut on the runway during Milan Fashion Week, being the fourth one of the big four and the first Egyptian designer to hit Milan Fashion Week.

This season marked the launch of her second RTW collection, aiming to create bold yet comfortable statement pieces to add a splash of colour to these hard times.

Positivity in hard times

The impact of the hardship faced by people recently due to COVID is undeniable. 2020 was a year of turmoil, and as if the uncertainty and fear that surrounded people amid the lockdown was not enough, obnoxiousness associated with the incidents of racial discrimination in the US and sexual harassment in Egypt added to the ugliness that almost felt tangible.

motifs of social distancing by Sara Onsi

Amid such circumstances, Sara Onsi decided to focus on a prospect of a brighter future, and harnessed her creative energy to craft a compilation of silhouettes which highlight the global experiences and hardships everyone is going through.

Her latest collection relied on three colourful patterns that held the titles of: What Quarantine, All Lives Matter, and No Means No.

motifs of social distancing by Sara Onsi

Her main aim was to bring colour to what we experienced in the last few months, helping people to absorb and understand the different aspects associated with them, but in a rather colorful and impactful manner.

The new collection titled ‘IT’S 2020’ features patterns that are characterised by bold colours and prints and shed light on the themes of social distancing, harassment and equality.

motifs of social distancing by Sara Onsi

“With all the madness, I saw colour. I felt like I did not want to remember 2020 this way, so if I could illustrate these events and hardships we lived through by characterising it with bold colours and prints, I can help people remember this experience with all its good and bad in a better light,” Sara Onsi concludes.

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