This is the next big thing hitting the Modest Fashion space soon. I am super excited about Mod Markit and its potential to help me, and millions of other Muslim women (that’s you!), find the perfect (and modest) outfit for every occasion!
Mod Markit is applying “Share Economy” thinking to the rapidly growing Modest Fashion industry, creating fresh platform to access modest and stylish clothes. We caught up with the founder of ModMarkit, Zulfiye Tufa, to find out all about it.
1. Can you tell us about ModMarkit?
Mod Markit is an app, currently in development, where you can shop, swap and sell modest fashion from your wardrobe. Living in a western country, access to modest fashion is limited, so at Mod Markit we had the idea to bring a community of wardrobes together – our access to modest fashion would be exponential. So once I’m done wearing a dress, I upload it to my wardrobe on Mod Markit and someone else can then make the most of it.
Currently when we, modest fashion lovers, are done with our clothes there isn’t much we can do with them because the general population aren’t typically looking for long and modest clothing. SO Mod Markit is really about the modest fashion community coming together, solving our own problems and addressing the gap in the mainstream fashion market.
The idea for Mod Markit only started fairly recently, around 3 months ago. After attending Qeerad’s LaunchQ program for startups, we developed the idea and decided to take it to the next level. It is officially my first start up; I am really excited about the direction it is taking and its potential to help out our community.
2. Why did you start ModMarkit, how did it start, and why should people be interested?
There are many reasons we hope Mod Markit will appeal to the community. Obviously if you are frustrated by mainstream western fashion’s seeming vacuum when it comes to modest fashion, we’ve got you covered. We also provide an ethical alternative to traditional fashion stores by reusing products and swapping and selling these within a community. Ultimately our goal is to give women the clothes they desire to ensure they can be as confident as possible, so as a community diverse in backgrounds, religions and sizes, we welcome everyone who shares our passion for modest fashion!
Mod Markit was actually going to be called Hijab Swap – but we didn’t want to limit our app to only hijab wearers, and we wanted the app to facilitate buying and selling in addition to swapping. This additional function allows people to participate regardless of having things to swap, and they can simply buy or sell. Basically our idea evolved in response to the needs of the modest fashion community.
3. Tell me about your team behind ModMarkit, how did you find them (or they find you)?
LaunchQ said I needed a team of a least 2 people to join the program so I decided to put a call out on social media and we ended up with our current creative team. Lucy, Maheen, Mahvash, Meutia, Fatima and Yen are interning with Mod Markit for 3 months and depending on how things go, for a lot longer!
They have really helped shape the branding and personality of Mod Markit and I would love to work with them for a lot longer. Currently we are predominately a team of ‘creatives’ and are looking to expand Mod Markit’s team with some tech savvy members.
4. What motivated you to start ModMarkit?
I had initially decided to start a clothing line to deal with the gap in the market, a real issue for modest fashion lovers. But through Launch Q I realised I would only be catering to those who like my personal style. I am still working on my clothing line as an additional project, but I realised that Mod Markit is almost like a community service. That is to say, we aim to facilitate the connection between a range of designers and modest fashion consumers.
It is solving a problem that many of us have, and because it is a platform for many brands, regardless of your style, you are bound to find something you like. Ultimately we want to make modest fashion easily accessible to more people.
5. What has been the most challenging & most rewarding thing about the startup experience so far?
So far the most rewarding is being able to bring a community together that has never really been brought together on this level. The live version of our App will be held on Jan 10th and it will be the largest modest fashion market in Australia.
I’d say that the most challenging part of the whole process is putting myself out there to do things I normally wouldn’t do and approach people I normally wouldn’t. For example, pitching your idea to brands and asking them to sponsor the live version of the App was completely out of my comfort zone, but I did it, with multiple businesses.
I got rejected by heaps of brands but was so appreciative to get lots of love from Benevolence Australia, Veil of Faith, Nasiba Fashion, and Hijab House, who have all believed in the idea and sponsored us to run this event. I feel blessed to have the opportunity to grow in that respect.
6. What is your vision for the future of ModMarkit? Where will it be in 5 years from now?
I have a vision that modest fashion will be mainstream and easy to access. I also see many women honing their entrepreneurial skills using Mod Markit as a platform to start their own businesses. Ultimately I see confident, self-assured women who have the means and the tools to express themselves inwardly and outwardly.
7. I heard you have an awesome event coming up soon – can you tell us more about it? I know I’m super keen on going!
To promote our App, and the sense of community we hope it will foster, Mod Markit is running a “live” version of the App. Basically what that means is you will be able to shop, sell, and swap clothing (preloved as well as new from fashion labels) in a real life marketplace on January 10th, 2-7pm, 524 Flinders Street Event Space, Victoria, Australia ($5 entry).
There will be singing, spoken word performances, live art, and — a huge highlight of the day— a fashion parade! We’re hoping it will be a great experience, with a heap of modest fashion styles to buy, swap and sell, but more than that, it is also giving modest fashion lovers the opportunity to be involved in the diverse and inclusive community of Mod Markit.
When: Sunday 10 January, 2-7pm
Where: 524 Flinders St, Melbourne, Australia 3000
Don’t Miss Out: To all the lucky people living in Melbourne, make sure you check it out. Get more info on the event’s Facebook page here.
Stay Connected: Check out the Mod Markit website, Facebook page, Instagram, and Twitter – so that you can stay up to date with the app and be one of the first people to get it!
TLDR: Here’s a short and sweet video that explains everything about Mod Markit:
About the Author:
Subhi has spent a bit of time on everything from design to PR management to psychology. She is also a sometime calligraphist and enjoys styling clothes and headscarves.