Turkish Fashion: From Hijab to Streetwear

Istanbul, a metropolis of 17 million people, is both traditional and ultramodern – a melting pot between the east and the west. The vibrant city on the Bosporus is increasingly making a name for itself as a fashion mecca.

The fashion scene is moving into the international spotlight. Turkish labels are storming catwalks around the world with their uniquely creative and experimental style. Deeply rooted in the Turkish tradition of craftmanship, the textile industry has long been one of the country’s largest economic sectors and has proven to be an export hit!

Starting on October 12, Fashion Week Istanbul will showcase how diverse, creative, and innovative the young design scene is – displaying a mix of mythological symbols, high-tech, Anatolian craftsmanship, and haute couture. Fashion collections are full of pride for their designers’ tradition and history – including the former greatness and splendor of the Ottoman Empire.

In addition to haute couture, Turkish streetwear in particular is causing a sensation around the world – sporty, casual fashion that spreads quickly via social media.

But “modest fashion” is also a quickly-growing market. Turkish haute couture designers are increasingly catering to a growing demand that follows the rules of more conservative Islamic sects, where the female form is cloaked and the hair is covered with headscarves or turbans.

The market is worth millions. For tourists and shoppers from the Middle-East, Istanbul is a fashion destination to which they feel deeply attached – even more so than Paris or New York. The entire Turkish fashion design scene benefits from this attraction.

Turkey is one of the six largest textile suppliers in the world. But the obvious drawback is its severe effects on climate change.

That’s why designers are focusing more on sustainability, with some going so far as to completely reengineer materials like vegan leather, which is made from bacteria.

Arts. 21 presents the most innovative Turkish designers and the exciting features of a rapidly growing fashion scene.

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