Islamic Lifestyle 

Bridal wear, headscarf, turban categories to debut at April’s Istanbul Modest Fashion Week - Modanisa brand manager Havva Kahraman

| 11 February, 2019 | Interview
Bridal wear, headscarf, turban categories to debut at April’s Istanbul Modest Fashion Week - Modanisa brand manager Havva Kahraman
Modanisa brand manager Havva Kahraman. Photo supplied by Modanisa

April will be a busy month for Islamic economy companies as they organise and participate in industry events in preparation for the high sales season of Ramadan that starts in early May, and Eid al Fitr in June.

If you’re a buyer, retailer, brand, designer, manufacturer or any other type of supplier along the modest fashion industry value chain, this Q&A with Modanisa brand manager Havva Kahraman will interest you.

Turkey’s modest fashion e-commerce leader will be holding its Istanbul Modest Fashion Week (IMFW) from Apr 18 to 20. This will be the second edition of the IMFW, after the inaugural event three years ago.

Most of this year’s IMFW catwalk shows will be at the Zorlu Centre in the heart of the European side of Istanbul, which is also where Istanbul Fashion Week takes place. Zorlu Centre is a big shopping destination that attracts footfall, which will be an advantage for IMFW’s Pop-Up Market, according to Havva. Attendance at the catwalks is by registration and invitation only. If you want to attend or participate, Modanisa says you must register online to guarantee your place.

Salaam Gateway caught up with Havva to find out what the industry can expect from Istanbul Modest Fashion Week 2019, which includes a new bridal wear category.

Salaam Gateway: What will be different about this year’s Istanbul Modest Fashion Week compared to 2016?

Havva Kahraman, Modanisa brand manager: The expectations are far greater, for a start!

When Modest Fashion Week made its debut in 2016, there was a lot of excitement, but no one quite knew what to expect. 

We set the bar high then and look to maintain that in 2019 by presenting a fantastic mix of established and emerging designers showcasing their new Ramadan collections on the catwalk. Modanisa will feature on the catwalk too, were we will be unveiling several high-profile collaborations.

The event will have inspirational keynote speakers, fashion buyers, leading fashion influencers, buyers and industry experts lined up, so it’s an excellent place to learn, discover and network.

What are the different categories you’ll be showing?

IMFW 2019 will include haute couture, ready-to-wear, and athleisure categories. For the first time we will also have bridal wear and headscarf/turban collections on the modest catwalk.

How many brands and designers will you host for the catwalks?

Demand for participation is high. We expect 22 designers and labels to hold shows at this year’s IMFW.

Are there any new country participants?

We have interest from all four corners of the globe, so hopefully when the line-up is finalised we will have new country participants too.

How many buyers are you expecting?

We expect around 30 buyers, from Turkey and also internationally, to attend this year’s event.

Why should fashion companies participate in this Istanbul event? How will it help them sell more?

IMFW is going to be one of the social highlights of the year. Istanbul is the home of Modest Fashion Week and Turkey is the largest Muslim market for fashion in the world.

These factors alone should draw interest from anyone serious about modest fashion.

Also, Ramadan is one the busiest times of the year for those in the halal economy, including the fashion retail sector. We’ve deliberately timed Istanbul Modest Fashion Week to take place in the run-up to Ramadan, allowing the world – and Muslim consumers specifically – to see new modest fashion trends.

IMFW will be the perfect place for brands and designers to raise their profile and generate new business. Each catwalk participant gets their own booth at our IMFW Pop-Up Market, so they will be able to sell at the event too.

We have lots of buyers attending and a business matching service, ensuring designers don’t miss out on key contacts at IMFW.

We offer high catwalk production values, so participants will receive quality new visual assets (photos and video) of their new collection on the catwalk, ready for use in their own marketing.

The event PR team is here to help the designers maximise their exposure by facilitating media interviews. Modanisa will be using its global reach and communication channels too, to promote each of the participants.

In short, it is an unparalleled opportunity for any modest fashion designer or mainstream fashion brand to tap into this rapidly growing market in a cost-effective way.

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