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Sunday / February 25.

Abayas only: NY show spotlights rise of modest fashion


NEW YORK: Indonesian designer Vivi Zubedi made her New York solo runway show debut on Sunday, wowing the crowd with her abaya-only collection as she hopes to capitalize on the growing market for modest, Muslim fashions.
In September, she showcased her signature look in a joint show shared with other designers from her homeland. It went so well that she jetted back to New York with the aim of drumming up more business.
“Very excited!” Zubedi said backstage after being mobbed by friends and family, taking selfies with stylish US bloggers who admire her fashion-forward Islamic style dressing even if they are not Muslim.
“I have a lot of clients here actually,” she said.
It was standing room only as Zubedi sent down the runway a collection of batik prints, black and midnight blue velvet, pearl-rimmed hijabs and American baseball-style hats perched on the top of headscarves.
Unlike the average US catwalk display of leg and cleavage, there was barely a strand of hair in sight, and even hands were cloaked in leather gloves or shielded by flouncy lacy cuffs.
Zubedi’s signature product is the abaya — the loose, flowing head to toe black garment worn by Muslim women.
But it was far from the throw-on-an-abaya-to-head-to-the-shops kind of look.
This was luxury, crystal-embossed material shimmering in the light, pearls draped around the neck, ruffled sleeves and hip hop meets tradition — a daring black leather jacket zipped up on top.
“I thought the show was amazing,” US blogger and stylist Dyandra Raye told AFP. “I would wear all of them! I’m super dramatic!“
Fashion writer Kristen Martin agreed.
“I absolutely loved it,” Martin told AFP. “I think it’s really important for us to embrace each other’s culture.”



via AN