Dubai’s First Ever ‘Modest Fashion Week’ Draws To A Spectacular Close
Following on from successful series in Istanbul and London, Dubai Modest Fashion Week saw global faces of modest fashion, award-winning designers and VIPs flock to enthrall at one of the world’s biggest modest fashion movements
Dubai, 10 December 2017: Following on from the iconic opening show starring international hijab supermodel Halima Aden, to an unforgettable talk on the evolution of the abaya from Sheikha Hend Faisal Al Qassemi, the first Dubai Modest Fashion Week (DMFW) drew to an impressive and memorable close last night.
The two-day style event that took place across the 8-9 December saw established and emerging designers from over 20 countries take part in 40 fashion shows, with 50 brand booths, interactive workshops and talks, fashion and art exhibitions plus 100 celebrities and influencers, gather at the city’s famous Burj Park to showcase the latest modest fashion trends. Working towards coining Dubai as a hub for the multi-billion dollar modest retail industry in the Middle East, H.H Sheikha Azza Bint Rashid Al Nuaimi, H.E Dr. Mouza Obaid Ghubash, Diana Haddad, and organisers - Modest Fashion Weeks founders Franka Soeria and Özlem Şahin (Think Fashion) as well as Arif Ebrahim (Red Connect)officially opened the weekend.
Day one Halima Aden the first Hijabi super modelwalked the DMFW catwalk for the Opening Show &Modanisa Fashion Show with Rasit Bagzibagliand Muslima Wear. Set within a mesmerising open-air catwalk beneath the sites of the Burj Khalifa,Aden fans got to see the international icon in action and get a glimpse of that star quality that has seen her grace the covers of Vogue Arabia and fashion magazines around the world.
Giving style fans a chance to meet their favourite modest influencers and celebrities from all over the world the red carpet featured some of the industries biggest names including; modest social media icon Dina Torkia, the face of modest fashion Mariah Idrissi, and well-known influencers Isra Chaker, Leena Asad, Haifa Beseisso, Melanie Elturk, Rumena Begum, Nabiilabee, Habiba da Silva, Sebinaah, Eslimah, Saufeeya Goodson and Safiyah El of Modestroute, Manal Rostom, Soha MT, Marwa Hassan and many more.
Followed by a rare downpour of rain, a revised catwalk schedule did not dampen spirits but saw crowds flock to the Talkshow Tent where Sheikha Hend Faisal Al Qassemi lit up the DMFW Talkshow Tent with her thoughts on ‘The Evolution of the Abaya’. The electric Q&A session was moderated by Dr. Monica Gallant of College of Fashion & Design Dubai and discussed the abayas role in driving modest fashion trends across the globe. Followed by H.E Dr. Mouza Obaid GhubashChairwoman of Rewaq Ousha Bint Hussein Cultural Center.
Later taking fans on a journey ‘from Nike to the cover of Vogue’, modest fashion’s most famous supermodel and cover star Halima Aiden joined, UK YouTube + Instagram celebrity Dina Tokio, Arab Egyptian Nike's Hijab Star Manal Rostom, global citizen star Haifa Beseisso and Muna Jama in the Talkshow Tent. One of the day’s most popular debates, DMFW visitors crammed into the tent to hear what the prolific ladies had to say on the subject of taking the modest movement to the mainstream and the importance of brand representation.
Boasting some of modest fashion’s most prolific names, Friday evening’s Wardah Beauty Fashion Talk discussed the indelible relationship between beauty and style. Led by Safiya Abdallah of minimalist modest label, Dulce by Safiya, the conversation saw Zaskia Sungkar, Norma Houri, ETU, Ria Miranda and Wardah Beauty’s special representative swap stories, insights and beauty tips.
Day two, kicked off with a jam-packed schedule of shows from Selma Sari by Modanisa, Canadianmodest teen brand - Yours Truly, modest brand Huw Roman Tokyo and US favourite’s Fllumae as well as contemporary ready-to-wear Malaysian label, aere, followed by a stunning show from one of modest fashion’s most established names, Kuwaiti brand Anotah.
As midday approached, judges including Dima Ayad from The Modist, industry specialists and Think Fashion founders gathered to celebrate an outstanding debut modest designer for The Emerging Modest Fashion Designer Award (#EMFDA) ceremony including; talented ones-to-watch Bahar Acahan (Australia), Ilham A.Ismail (Australia) and Araida (Russia) who walked away with the winning prizes.
Later DMFW welcomed luxury handbag designer Doris Dorothea to the catwalk for an unforgettable parade show of their trademark contemporary reptile leather bags. Modelled by international influencers and modest movers and shakers including UK’s sweetheart Rumena Begum, Egypt’s favourite Marwa Hassan, German’s leading designer Meriem Lebdiri, the show aimed to shed light on conflict-torn countries such as Burma, Palestine and Syria.
Discussing how to use personal influence to instigate change in the industry, modest stars Isra Chaker, Nourhan Kandil, Passant Saleh and Ines Sebiane joined forces in the DMFW Talkshow Tent. Moderated by Kuwaiti media star, Sandi Ismail, to debate the relationship between fashion and activism, and how to use your platform for good.
Answering the age old question, ‘how to pitch your fashion brand to investors’, Kerim Ture (Modanisa) Rabia Z and Dilyara Sadriyeva, discussed how to turn that modest fashion dream into a business-savvy empire.
Followed by another day two highlight, was the exclusive show by DMFW make-up partnersWardah Beauty with local talent Safiya Abdallah of Dulce by Safiya, and renowned designers; Zaskia Sungkar, Norma Hauri, Ria Miranda and ETU.Combining the latest modest trends and cutting-edge make-up from South East Asia's number one beauty brand, the day two show was an education in how to fuse fashion and beauty.
Music fans got a surprise visit from artist and world-famous musician, Hisham El Hajj performing his most popular hits to a packed audience and bringingDubai Modest Fashion Week to a magnificent end, Ajmal perfumes presented Annah Hariri, Miss Ayshe followed by Indonesian brand Sumaya & SSS. The weekend came to a show stopping close with couture show by Hilal Oguzkan from Turkey, Zeina Ali from Jordan and India’s Murcyleen Peerzada - joined by Bollywood star Gauahar Khan.
“We are thrilled with the success of Dubai Modest Fashion Week, this weekend we have welcomed some of the modest fashion industries shining stars from the around the world to this truly innovative city. With its position as the centre for modest fashion in the GCC, this is another step in strengthening the movements already burgeoning influence on the mainstream fashion industry.” comments Franka Soeria, DMFW co-founder and co-creator of Think Fashion.
Özlem Şahin, DMFW co-founder of Think Fashion adds, “Our aim with Modest Fashion Week is to engage international and local ground-breaking fashion talents, to show the world that trendsetting design and modest fashion go hand-in-hand. The past two days have undoubtedly highlighted the diversity and depth of this fast-growing industry and further cemented its influence.”