As Dubai welcomes SS 2018 collections in store, the emirate continues to flourish as a leading global retail destination, appealing to residents and tourists alike. With an increasing number of fashion brands entering the market and the emergence of local designers, Dubai has undoubtedly become a global fashion hub.
Dubai continues to advance its fashion scene with places like d3, the development dedicated to the design community including startups, entrepreneurs and established international design, luxury and fashion brands and initiatives such as Dubai Design & Fashion Council which help elevate local and regional talent, coupled with growing fashion events such as Fashion Forward, the bi-annual event which supports Middle Eastern design talent and fosters industry discussion and professional development.
With Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment (DFRE), an agency of the Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (Dubai Tourism), spearheading efforts to support fashion retailers, entrepreneurs and designers, emerging local designers have shared their stories on how Dubai has helped shine a spotlight on their fashion collections.
Rami Al Ali, Founder of Rami Al Ali Official
“I came to Dubai in 1997 to explore career opportunities in fashion and I started my career in one of the best fashion houses in Dubai at the time. After I launched my own label in 2000, I have since then launched three successful lines. Dubai is the land of entrepreneurs as it supports and nourishes people from all walks of life to explore all possible businesses. Recently, there has been a lot of effort in supporting the fashion industry, in particular by launching great locations such as the Dubai Design District and initiatives such as the Dubai Design & Fashion Council, as well as fashion platforms such as Fashion Forward. The fashion scene in Dubai used to be very basic and it has been, for a very long time, an exporter for trends and products. Recently, this has changed immensely and with the revolution of the digital world, people are becoming more educated in fashion and they have a stronger identity. We have recently launched our couture SS18 in Paris during couture fashion week and we will soon launch a special collaboration with a Dubai personality which will be announced very soon just in time for Ramadan.”
Dalia El Ali, Founder of Dee by Dalia
“I launched my business from home in 2014 and I can honestly say that Dubai has been a great place to start. There is a lot of focus on supporting regional talents with the presence of Dubai Design District and Dubai Design & Fashion Council as they are great platforms for established designers to help them grow their brand into a successful business. For example, my business started from home, whereas now, we have an office in d3 and more than 10 retailers which is very rewarding. I have also won a competition run by Dubai Design & Fashion Council and I have just taken in part in London Fashion Week for the first time.”
Nadine Kanso, Founder of Bil Arabi
“I have been in Dubai for eighteen years and when I started Bil Arabi eleven years ago Dubai was a great place to be as it provided opportunities for new businesses. Dubai created d3 which supported local designers and brought them together. My business has for sure grown to become an established brand that stands on its own feet and projects credibility and success. I have moved from working in my garage to d3…I am very happy with that journey”
Maryam Hassani, Founder of 55FIFTY7
“Being an Emirati designer myself, I get a lot of support from Dubai when it comes to my business. Our studio is located in d3, which is the dedicated design hub in the region. It is so inspiring to be amongst other talent on a daily basis. Dubai’s fashion scene is growing expeditiously and it’s becoming globally recognised amongst other fashion destinations such as New York, Paris and London. With the various annual events such Fashion Forward, there’s a great platform for local designers to keep up with the local and international trends in the fashion industry. For SS18, we’re currently working on two exciting collections; d3 collection which inspired by Dubai’s design destination and 55FIFTY7’s home, Dubai Design District.”
In addition to local designers, malls across Dubai such as Dubai Festival City and The Dubai Mall are continuously expanding to host more brands. With the emerging fashion scene and the availability of the trendiest pieces in stores, there has never been a better time to shop in Dubai!