Valued at some $1.34 trillion in retail sales, the global fashion industry is a massive moneymaker, and this is without factoring in sales figures from shoes and bags. Lucrative though it may be, it is also one of the dirtiest industries in terms of its carbon footprint and other crimes against the environment.
The Fashion Design Council of Bangladesh (FDCB) aims to change that, with the recently-concluded TRESemmé Bangladesh Fashion Week, 2019, showed how it could be done. On February 23-25, 19 local and 11 international designers from all over Asia lit up the ramps at the International Convention City Bashundhara. What made this event different from Fashion Weeks hosted in other countries was the emphasis on eco-friendly fashion.
Riding on the strength of its annual Khadi Future Fabric Show, which has for the past few years been pushing forward a conversation on the possibilities of locally produced organic fabrics, FDCB decided to go one step further by promoting designers who put an emphasis on fair practices. “We decided to allow no synthetic fabrics, no velvets or chemical dyes. We want to showcase our local designers on an international platform, as well as encourage collaboration with the international fashion community” says Maheen Khan, Founder, and President of FDCB.
With TRESemmé as the title sponsor, hair was, of course, a big part of the show. Each day of the three-day event was styled by a different celebrity stylist. Day 1 was styled by Afroza Parveen and featured local designers Humaira Khan, Riffat Reza Raka, Sarah Karim, Sadiya Mishu, Musarrat Rahman, Ezmat Naz Rima, and Lipi Khandker. Amongst the international designers were Aishath Shamla (Maldives), Anu Shrestha (Nepal) and Paromita Banerjee (India). The hair for Day 2 was done by Kaniz Almas and the featured Bangladeshi designers were Farah Anjum Bari, Shah Rukh Amin, Afsana Ferdousi, Faiza Ahmed, Rupo Shams, Tasfia Ahmed, and Shaibal Saha, while the international designers included Sukajit Daengchai (Thailand), Kencho Wangmo (Bhutan), and Swati Kalsi (India). Farzana Shakil did the styling for Day 3, and the designers were, Kuhu, Emdad Hoque, Maria Sultana, Chandana Dewan, Rifat Rahman, and Maheen Khan from Bangladesh. Also, Edric Ong (Malaysia), Kallol Dutta (India), Merdi Sihombing (Indonesia), Faiza Sami (Pakistan), KT Brown (Sri Lanka) showcased their beautiful collections.
Fashion Design Council of Bangladesh (FDCB) was the creative partner of the event, and Le Méridien Dhaka was the hospitality partner.