Lately, the hijab and modest fashion has received more attention than ever from the fashion industry and many of us have responded with excitement to this recognition. But how many times do we actually check to see where and how our clothes are made?
The collapse of Rana Plaza garment factory has brought many dirty secrets of the fashion industry to light. Of course you can blame it all on the economy and conditions of the third world but if you dig deeper, you will realize that the reason for the incident was Fast Fashion and our demand for cheaper clothes that are made at the cost of modern day slaves.
Purple Impression, a Fair Trade fashion brand based out of California has made it its mission to promote slow and ethical fashion. At a time when many fast fashion brands have decided to go after the purchasing power of the Muslim Market, this clothing company has decided to bet against the norm/mass production and offer its customers unique hand embroidered designs that are empowering female artisans in Pakistan.
Born in Pakistan and raised between Dubai and the U.S, Afshan Khan the co-founder of Purple Impression said: “We witnessed firsthand the loss of traditional crafts, exploitation from middlemen, tons of second hand clothes landing up in developing countries, and the effects of fast fashion on the factory workers and the planet. We knew something had to be done, so we took our production to our parents home town in Multan, Pakistan that is rich in the culture of hand embroidery and built a supply chain to provide a fashionable alternative that was made with quality fabric and stitching that the modern buyer demands”.
Their designs are more casual with a fusion of traditional motifs adding an indigenous flair to modern silhouettes. They also make it easy to follow the journey of the production of your clothes by showing you the women working on each piece and sharing their names. “When you see a face, it prompts you to think deeper, adding meaning to your wardrobe. Often times more than how something looks, what matters is how it makes you feel, that sense of connection is what we are trying to create”, Khan explains.
“When you see a face, it prompts you to think deeper, adding meaning to your wardrobe. Often times more than how something looks, what matters is how it makes you feel, that sense of connection is what we are trying to create”
Purple Impression started off by offering limited hand embroidered tunics but have now expanded to include Eco-friendly fabrics into their designs. Their new Mystic Collection is inspired by Islamic Art featuring the wonderful collaboration of a local San Francisco based designer who brings her 20 years of experience working in the fashion Industry with the beautiful calligraphy of a local Iranian calligrapher that is hand embroidered by their artisans in Pakistan.
Hubb, Wahda, Sallam (Love, Unity and Peace) is the message of their Nomad Tee. “In this time of world turmoil we wanted to bring people together through Art and Fashion,” said Khan.
“In this time of world turmoil we wanted to bring people together through Art and Fashion”
Purple Impression is definitely leading the way by providing fashion forward modest clothing for the modern buyer who wants to make an impact with what she wears . Once you have a piece from Purple Impression, you can be proud to support fashion that empowers women and preserves the dying art of hand embroidery by restoring the pride and recognition to the artisans. You can Check out their line at: www.purpleimpression.com
About the Author
Huda Werner is a Minneapolis native with a background in horticulture and landscape design. She is passionate about the environment and is always on the lookout for ethical and fair companies. She is also a contributing blog writer at Purple Impression
Opinions expressed by the writer do not necessarily convey the opinions of Creative Ummah.