Global acceptance of modest clothes and the support from some of the eminent fashion houses has given modest fashion a well-deserved place in the global fashion industry. Modest fashion was designed to help Muslim women dress in accordance with their faith whilst still expressing their preference in style. The modest fashion industry has an annual revenue of AED 350 billion, which is evidence of its popularity. The segment already boasts of mainstream international brands that have expanded their lines to cater to the customers who want to look stylish but relatively covered up. Fashion luxury brands, fast fashion as well as sports brands have launched their collection of modest clothing in the last two years. Dolce and Gabbana, Tommy Hilfiger and Oscar de la Renta have been some of the well-known fashion houses who have brought modest fashion to the centre stage. These designers have been instrumental in changing the general perspective with regards to modest clothing by launching their collection of hijabs and abayas in the Middle East. This trend was followed by Burberry, Nike and other brands who launched their exclusive Ramadan collection and hijabs respectively.
Modest clothing has become extremely popular in the UAE owing to its high majority of the Muslim population as well as the relatively very high proportion of spending on clothing. It is likely that UAE will become the key modest fashion market in the world as its retail sector is very well developed and the consumer demand for fashion products is extremely high. As a testament to the region’s potential, the MENA Design Outlook report revealed that the MENA fashion market has outpaced global industry growth by over 4.7 times since 2010. The UAE especially has been very proactive in promoting its fashion industry, with Dubai competing with established fashion cities such as the likes of London, Paris and Tokyo.
The start of the modest fashion week in Dubai has provided a platform to the budding designers and fashionistas in the region to showcase their creativity and talent. Emirati designers want to position the UAE as the modest fashion capital of the world, and they believe that this is a step in the right direction as for a very long time women in the region were deprived of variety and access to designer clothes. The advent of modest fashion has provided an opportunity for future investments in the region by leading design houses, reputed brands and fast fashion makers. There is still room for growth in this particular segment and many international brands have started thinking of exploiting this untapped market. With the Arab fashion week being one of the top five most important fashion weeks in the world, the modest fashion industry has finally arrived.