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Emirati wins key fashion award

Dubai:, January 22, 2008

An Emirati fashion designer, who took “universal modest chic” to London Fashion Week, has won a key award.

Rabia Zargarpur, also known as Rabia Z, who specialises in fashion for the modern Muslim woman under the banner of ‘universal modest chic’, has become the first winner of the GCC/Mediterranean (MED) regional competition run by the British Council to find the International Young Fashion Entrepreneur of the Year, the council said in a statement.

This first British Council International Young Fashion Entrepreneur Award aims to discover those talented and successful individuals who have both the creative flair and business edge to become future leaders and champions of their local fashion industry, it added.

Rabia Z., also the name of her clothing label, will now head to the International London Fashion Week in February 2008 to represent the GCC/MED region and to compete for the international title, as one of 10 regional winners from around the world.

Rabia Z. draws inspiration from her own experience – she herself started to wear the Hijab six years ago, when living in the US. 

Rabia, who is married with a young son, recently returned to Dubai to fulfil her dream of creating her own fashion label, after completing her fashion and business studies in the US.

Rabia Z, which caters to the needs of the modern Muslim woman, held its full debut collection runway show as a winner of the Emerging Talent segment at the recent Dubai International Fashion Week, which jointly conducted the International Young Fashion Entrepreneur competition with the British Council in the UAE.

“I am absolutely thrilled to have won the GCC/MED title of Young Fashion Entrepreneur of the Year 2008! It is truly an honor to be representing the GCC/MED region and I am grateful for the opportunity to participate and compete for the International title of this Award in London during London Fashion Week this year,” said Rabia Z.

“As a fashion designer and entrepreneur, it's a tremendous achievement to finally see the fashion industry and the world of commerce appreciate and encourage the idea of an up and coming international brand name- Rabia Z., which seeks to fulfil the fashion needs of contemporary women from the Islamic faith. The emerging demand for fashion forward, ready-to-wear (prêt-a-porter) conservative chic apparel and sports wear, which we have pioneered on the catwalk, is an enormous potential business opportunity worldwide, and has been the key to the success of the Rabia Z. label. This is what I wish to promote during the trip and the competition in the UK and I look forward to this valuable experience,” she added.

The British Council invited applications from the MED and nationals of four countries from the Gulf States - Bahrain, Qatar, UAE and Saudi Arabia - aged between 25-35 years, with at least two years’ professional experience in the fashion sector. The judging panel for the UAE award, which assessed entries for their entrepreneurial ability, character and leadership ability, comprised leading local fashion industry experts.

The 10 regional winners will enjoy a 12-day fashion tour in the UK and join a “Master-class” with top UK designer and successful businessman Sir Paul Smith, as well as the opportunity to compete for the title of International Young Fashion Entrepreneur 2008.

The overall International Award winner will also receive $14,500 to spend on a collaborative project with the British Council on promoting links between the fashion industry in their country and the UK. – TradeArabia News Service




Tags: Award | retail | Fashion | Council | designer | entrepreneur | Emirati |

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