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Islamic fashion as a phenomenon stemmed from the combination of a set of Islamic practices (in which the need to cover a specific set of body parts is present) and of the rising need and desire to include these specific clothing items in a broader fashion industry. The global growth of “an Islamic consumer sector, which explicitly forges links between religiosity and fashion, encouraging Muslims to be both covered and fashionable, modest and beautiful,” is relatively young: Islamic Fashion as a particular phenomenon started appearing toward the 1980s.
The most recent developments in the field have caused a varied public discourse on a series of different levels, from the political, to the religious, to the cultural. Different positions are taken by different participants in the discussion of the politics and cultures of Islamic fashion.
Islamic Fashion market nowadays presents the rapidly expanding niche that is still relatively empty in a global scale. Big brands are trying to present their collections related to Muslim religious observances, however, without any visible attempts to single handedly secure the Muslim customers in Western countries leaving the space for the emerging young designers mainly from Muslim states. In the United Arab Emirates, particularly Dubai, are steadily laying the ground to become the Islamic Fashion center with a highly curated Designers District and housing of the leading Islamic brands.
Today the Islamic Fashion market is still in its early development stage; however, according to the numbers provided by the Global Islamic Economy Indicator the dynamics will rapidly change: Muslim consumers spent an estimated $266bn on clothing in 2014, a number that is projected to grow up to $484bn by 2019. Despite the fact that the figures show the purchase of clothing that cannot be translated directly into Islamic fashion the trend clearly proves that the modest fashion industry will be flourishing.
Furthermore, the Pew Research predicts that the global population of Muslims will equal the number of Christians by 2050; hence, the purchasing power of young Muslim customers will steadily grow that presents new opportunities for both young designers and big fashion brands. As for the seasonal profit the famous companies like DKNY, Hilfiger are starting paying more attention to observances like Ramadan when the number of Muslim consumers rockets. However, currently the world-famous designers present their collections whether in Gulf States or online only while omitting the opportunities and growing demand presented in Western countries as it expresses Amani Al-Khatahtbeh, the editor-in-chief of MuslimGirl.net:
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