The world’s most expensive Abaya is doing rounds around Dubai this week.
Estimated to be worth Dh65.1 million (US$17.7 million), the garment features a rare red diamond as its centrepiece, with only one in every hundred million of the precious stones having a naturally rouged hue. At the quoted price, the Abaya is the most expensive piece of clothing around the world, to date.
The red diamond used is natural and has a value of $7.4 million. The stone has been independently appraised by Antwerp.
According to Wingham’s website, the abaya features a total of 2000 precious stones, including 50 flawless two-carat white diamonds, 50 flawless two-carat black diamonds, the beautiful red diamond and 1899 pointer diamonds. The Abaya boasts over 200,000 stitches all of which are hand stitched in 14 carat white gold thread. The detail-oriented garment also includes an intricate layering detail and delicate beading detail with a raised flower effect, all created by hand.
Last year the designer debuted what is reported to be the world’s most expensive black diamond dress, valued at £3.5 million (Dh19.4 million). It boasted 25, two-carat, flawless black diamonds on the peplum, 25 more framing the shoulders and five resplendent stones on the bustier, along with 1,500 white, pointer diamonds woven into the skirt of the gown.
In an interview given to TODAY.com, Debbie Wingham quoted,
“The Arabian ladies have a certain elegance to them and the abayas have a certain movement that just captured my imagination. [It] is a garment that you can add your own twist to, and providing it is honorable and respectful to the culture, it still leaves a large window to adapt and add your own signature flair.”
Elaborating upon the source of idea for the dress, she said that a rare-stone collecting client of hers suggested she work with red diamonds in her next piece.
“She came to my atelier when I was working on the…black diamond dress and said, Debbie you should have said you were doing this, you could have borrowed something spectacular from me.'” Wingham said. “The thought of being able to use a red diamond, a stone that most jewelers don’t even ever get to see in their lifetime, was too much of a good opportunity to pass by.”
The Abaya was set to be launched on the 20th on March, along with a further collection of 45 abayas, at the Raffles Hotel. The abaya however, will only be on display and will not be sold.
“I do need to give the diamond back unfortunately,” she says.
Debbie will be holding a consultation suite from the 20th-25th of March, where clients can come by appointment for a private viewing and fashion consultation with the designer.