Saudi Arabia Celebrates Woman-Only Arab Fashion Week

Saudi Arabia Celebrates Woman-Only Arab Fashion Week

Men will not be allowed to attend the catwalk shows either, though they were allowed at the opening ceremony. Open only to women, the fashion week will have collections showcased by renowned labels like Roberto Cavalli and Jean Paul Gaultier, besides designs by Middle Eastern, Brazilian, US and Russian designers.

Princess Noura bint Faisal Al Saud, the honorary president of the Arab Fashion Council in Riyadh, claimed fashion has always been a part of the kingdom's DNA. The fashion extravaganza, which will conclude on Saturday, will end with a Russian ballet performance meant only for a women-only audience at Riyadh's Ritz-Carlton Hotel.

Saudi Arabia is holding its first ever fashion week this week. It is not something that was previously off the table or out of the picture. "Our fashion council is trying to bring the fashion industry in Saudi Arabia to a whole new level, a whole new industry", she said, appreciating the efforts of the council.

Listed as an global fashion week alongside Paris and Milan, Arab Fashion Week offers exclusively see-now-buy-now collections and pre-collections.

Prior to this hosting in Saudi, Arab Fashion week has been exclusively held in the Gulf of Dubai.

This is just one of a number of progressive moves made by Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman, the kingdom's de-facto leader, who is hoping to improve the country's global image and attract foreign investors.

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The kingdom saw its first cinema opening in decades and allowed women to drive, in a complete overhaul of usual Saudi social practices.

The crown prince has also hinted that the abaya, the long loose robe worn by women from the neck down, may not be compulsory. The event will take place at the Ritz Carlton.

When the project was announced, Layla Issa Abuzaid, country director for Saudi Arabia at the Arab Fashion Council said that the event in Riyadh would be more than a world-class event, The New York Times mentioned.

A second edition of Saudi Arab Fashion Week is already scheduled for October.

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