Every year in late October, The Dubai Mall plays host to Vogue Fashion Experience Dubai (VFDE), a two-day event featuring some of the biggest names in fashion, runway shows, lectures, special events, emerging designers and limited-edition items for sale.
Now in its third year and with
as the official partner, Dubai takes centre stage once again as the emerging fashion hub of the Middle East. There are some career-altering prizes up for grabs this year, with the introduction of new scouting contest in which three winners will be chosen from Dubai's next generation of fashion talent. With
among those tipped to be on the guest list, these are the headlining events.
Dubai's fashion glitterati and a host of international celebrities dress to impress for the launch night of VFDE at
The Dubai Mall
, where a red carpet and runway show kicks off festivities.
The glamorous event attracts onlookers from most levels of the mall, and not only for the threads. Past entertainment has included Beyonce's little sister, singer and DJ, Solange Knowles.
Meanwhile, for those fortunate enough to get an invitation, last year's charity gala, held in support of the World Food Program, was the hottest ticket in town. Hosted by Editor In Chief of Vogue Italia,
, the exclusive dinner took place at the foot of the Burj Khalifa and A-list guests included supermodels
as well as fashion icon
If the calibre of last year is any indication, this year's opening night is sure to be just as impressive, with Naomi Campbell, Christian Louboutin and
Silvia Venturini Fendi
all rumoured to be rubbing shoulders here.
Fashion show, 7pm, Thursday 29 October, The Dubai Mall
Besides the famous faces, the highlight of the VDFE opening night is a carefully curated fashion show featuring eight emerging designers from around the world.
Handpicked by a panel including Franca Sozzani, last year's participants included
Madiya Al Sharqi
from the UAE and
Jackie JS Lee
from South Korea. Seating is invitation-only, though the public can watch the action unfold from the levels above.
Fashion show, 7pm, Thursday, 29 October, The Dubai Mall
Who Is On Next? Dubai
Finalists will be on the edge of their seats to learn the results of this sartorial scouting competition, the first edition ever to be held outside Italy.
First, though, they will need to send their collections down the runway for judging. Open to emerging designers from the Middle East, Asia and Africa, the prizes for 'Who Is On Next?' include a fashion show in Florence and Rome next year, the opportunity to retail in a pop-up store in The Dubai Mall as well as an invitation to the Vogue Talents Corner during
Milan Fashion Week.
A who's who of industry judges, including Christian Louboutin and
Burberry CEO Christopher Bailey
, will select three winners from three categories including womenswear, menswear and accessories.
10am to midnight, Thursday 29 October and Friday 30 October, Star Atrium, The Dubai Mall
This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to listen to some of the biggest names in fashion share their views on topics relating to the industry. Typically held at
Armani Hotel Dubai
inside the world's tallest building, Burj Khalifa, the fashion talks are open to the public and require online registration.
Last year's discussions took on themes including 'New Generation in Fashion', 'The Strength of Tradition' and 'From Denim to Red Carpet' and were hosted by fashion industry elite including designers
Alberta Ferretti, Roberto Cavalli, Phillipp Plein
Check in with the website for updated information on sessions and timings.
3pm, 4pm, 5pm, Friday 30 October
Behind the scenes, some of The Dubai Mall's most stylish residents are throwing their own soirees to coincide with VFDE, offering everything from styling workshops to exhibitions and collection previews.
Last year Alexander McQueen displayed a set of haute couture gowns, while luxury shoe haven
Level Shoe District
did some incredible footwork to turn its entire shop floor into an interactive exhibition. Inside they offered everything from shoemaking masterclasses, a live demonstration of 3D-printed shoes, a virtual shoe museum and one-of-a-kind designs. Hit the shops to pick up limited-edition products only on offer during VFDE 2015.
Throughout both days, various locations at The Dubai Mall
Vogue Fashion Experience Dubai
29 – 30 October 2015
The Dubai Mall