The name Meiling has been synonymous with exquisite fashion and design in the Caribbean for many years, and the inimitable style maven has remained firmly fixed atop the industry. Superlatives are easily exhausted when one thinks of Meiling and the quality of work she has consistently delivered since she began her journey in fashion design after studying in London in the 1970s. Trinidad’s darling of design has been a fixture at Caribbean Fashionweek and she returns this year to present a collection entitled the “Grand Riviere.”

Meiling will reveal her capsule collection inspired by the idyllic village in the Northern range of Trinidad. The “Grand Riviere” is an all-white collection which the designer says is a study in serenity and romance. For this collection, Meiling also drew inspiration from the famed Trinidadian 19th century painter Jean Michael Cazabon. Cazabon, who studied medicine but decided instead to pursue a career in fine art, was one of twin island’s foremost artist whose landscape paintings and works were exhibited in the Salon du Louvre in Paris the 1840s.

A grand artist herself, Meiling intends to capture the spirit of gentler days gone by with designs that embody the narratives in the Cazabon paintings. Fabrics, she says, “will be light and airy to recreate the soft breezes wafting across the beaches; details and finishing touches will be reminiscent of the lush nature of Grand Riviere and as always, there will be subtle sensual vibrancy and edgy undertones akin to the of ebb and flow of the tides.”

Meiling’s deft touch and precise understanding of what women want from their clothes is formed from a simple premise. Says the designer “dressing is about a sense of occasion, about feeling special [and] the relationship between the personality and garment is very important.” No one understands this philosophy better than Meiling. The designer continues: “Grand Riviere” will beckon you to indulge yourself in calm tranquility while ruffling and stimulating your aesthetic sensibility with deceptively effortless designs.

The collection can be seen at Caribbean Fashionweek 2011. The shows begin at the National Indoor Sports Centre on June 10 and continues on the 11th, and 12th. CFW is in its eleventh year and is covered by major international press including the BBC, the Associated Press, Vogue and several others. This year CFW will present a total entertainment package while maintaining its strong business focus. International recording artist Joe along with several other Jamaican and Caribbean performers including Tanya Stephens and Machel Montano, will be on the CFW stage. There will also be several after parties across the city. The event will also host a business forum along with buyer meet and greet and the exhibition hall will be opened for business at the NISC. CFW is a gleaner sponsored event.

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