Warrior queen: Saudi label Honayda pays tribute to Berber leader Queen Dihya in new collection

The brand, helmed by designer Honayda Serafi, was inspired by the Tunisian and Moroccan desert scapes

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For her autumn / winter 2020 collection, Honayda Serafi looked back through history – to the 7th century, to be precise.

The Saudi Arabian designer has paid homage to Berber warrior Queen Dihya in her latest collection, reimagining the leader's military armour in sequins and metallics.

Scroll through the gallery above to see more from Honayda's autumn / winter 2020 collection.

Serafi, who launched her namesake label in 2017, frequently turns the spotlight on notable female figures through her designs, having previously been inspired by the likes of the Queen of Sheba.

This winter, Honayda's Divine from the Desert collection is a tribute to Queen Dihya, who is known for leading a resistance to the conquest of the Maghreb.

"In a persistent quest to empower women, I aim to shed light – through each of my collections – on a female figure that left her mark in the history of civilizations," says Serafi. "This season, Queen Dihya not only translates the power of a woman’s mind, but also demonstrates her wit and strategical reflection in the face of danger."

Queen Dihya's influence is translated into feminine but finely tailored cuts, with flowing tulles juxtaposed against rigid sequins, fur trims and structured satins. Hues move from mustards into rich purples, with the colour palette influenced by the landscape and fauna of the Tunisian and Moroccan deserts.

"I saw orange sand dunes brushing a purple sky that was smoothly getting darker by the minute. The scenery was picturesque," says Serafi.

The collection is titled Divine from the Desert
The collection is titled Divine from the Desert

Ruffled capes offer armour against the evening's chill, while subtle metallic embroidery enlivens the collection's deeper shades.

"Queen Dihya's Amazighi roots played a central role in this season’s inspiration, from the imperial accessories to the geometrical shapes."

Honayda has previously dressed the likes of Oscar winner Lupita Nyong'o and Priyanka Chopra Jonas.