Iran’s Fashion Renaissance: VICE Reports

For the past 35 years, We have seen how clothes have evolved to express how people want to be seen their movement in society is a stance on their own identity and visual expression. Fashion in Iran has a whole other voice and today we were witness of this. We’re at the third annual Fajr clothes festival in Tehran. It’s the first time an event like this is taking place where men and women are coming out on stage and we’re pretty excited to see what they have to show. [praying in Arabic] The country’s top officials responsible for granting permission for the show were in attendance in the front as a sign of respect and also to ensure the show itself, its models would be dressed suitable within Iran’s Islamic dress code and laws. Before the Islamic Revolution of ’79, fashion in Iran resembled that of Western and European styles for both men and women. Wearing the Islamic cover, known as the hijab, was not required. It was after the Islamic Revolution that the Sharia law came into place, which required the hijab to be a part of the Islamic law. Mr. Razavi has witnessed Iran’s vast shifts in both fashion and culture. VICE: It is more common to see the black chador outside of the major cities especially in the holy cities of Quom and Mashhad. However, Iran’s involving fashion has
even garnered the attention of President Rouhani, who has openly expressed a softer
approach to the laws around clothing. In this room we have the clothes of all
the various designers that are taking part in the Fajr fashion festival. As you can see, we have the different types of chadors on one side and then you
have the more colorful types of clothes on the other with a bit of the
traditional Qajari right in the center so we can see that since the
Islamic Revolution the type of clothes that people wear has really evolved but
still respecting the Islamic dress code. Here I am with one of the designers. Her name
is Ahzra Moradi. VICE: Designers are not the only ones who are facing many obstacles in Iran. Iranian fashion models have to work within a very concise set framework. Men and women have not modeled on stage together until today’s event. Sharif Razavi understands this balance and is the founder of Iran’s premier modelling agency. VICE: The fashion revival has implications beyond just the clothing itself. There’s a noticeable difference in the
attitudes of the attendees, like that of Hamid Yousefi, the head of Pars Leather, who explains the importance of the catwalk. The success of this year’s Fajr fashion week attracted over 35,000 manufacturers that sold their clothing designs in over 400 venues across the country. VICE: It’s really nice and colorful, vibrant. I love this. This is one color that no one would dare to wear like, what, more than 10 years ago. VICE: Iran’s fashion movement is gaining momentum. The colors are blossoming and expression through fabric may be the opening to a new Iran, one filled with style and grace.


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