The lifestyle choice is only growing in momentum, and thanks to the founders of Modest Fashion Week – Ozlem Sahin and Franka Soeria – wave-makers within the industry are uniting and being inspired like never before.
For the second time around, Modest Fashion Week is coming to Dubai in March 2019. Having launched in 2016, the fashion movement has already unfolded in places such as London, Jakarta, Istanbul, and New York.
And all that is possible thanks to two creative and determined minds coming together – Ozlem Sahin and Franka Soeria.
Joining us over Morning Coffee, the inspiring duo chatted with A&E about where they want to go next with their business, what inspires them the most and how they’re bridging cultures with Modest Fashion Week.
Watch the full interview with the duo above, and see the five things we learned talking to them below.
Five Things We Learned Talking to Modest Fashion Week Founders Ozlem Sahin and Franka Soeria Over Morning Coffee
Modest fashion is for everyone
As the duo explain, the idea of dressing modestly isn’t a new idea. The concept is just breaking free of its associations purely with religion or culture. What they’ve done is re-branded the concept to make it accessible to people in all walks of life.
Dubai is the perfect place for the modest fashion movement
Franka told us: “When we choose a country we really do our research. Which country is international and diverse… The way we speak about modest fashion isn’t just fashion, it’s actually a lifestyle. It’s not related to religion, so it has to be a city that is tolerant and diverse and very open so we think Dubai is perfect.”
Leonardo Da Vinci is still an inspiration
When asked who inspires her the most, Ozlem named the artist. She explained: “He’s really holistic – he’s a doctor, an artist and an architect. He did everything, it shows me that everything is possible actually. Just change the way you are thinking.”
Approach your business with heart
Is Franka’s professional motto. She elaborated: “Do everything with heart. Some people told me when I started that I’m too much ‘heart’, and that I should be a businesswoman. More iron… But I do it my way, and when you do it with a heart – a personal touch – people can feel it. Why do they want to stay with me, why do I get clients? It’s not because I’m the best but because they know I’m listening. I speak with the heart.”
It’s okay to be a misfit
After telling us she was bullied a child, she said the attitude she learned to adopt and the skills she picked up for that led her to be the successful person she is today. Which is why she would tell her younger self to ignore what people think about them and realise that sometimes being a misfit is okay. She said: “Don’t worry what people think about you, you’re doing good things. It’s a phase for you to be a stronger person. Sometimes as a leader, you need to be alone, even if it can feel painful now… Sometimes it’s okay to be a misfit, maybe God is preparing you for something. To be something, you need to be a stand out.