With its tradition, well-set fashion background, and mosaic form, Istanbul is a city that embraces all cultures and earns the title of "fashion city." Is Istanbul's multi-cultural boundaries, conservative edge, and socialogical pressure a source of "inspiration" or a source of "controversy" for designers?
For years, Istanbul fashion has been striving to create an international standing. Designers claim to have a common language by cutting boundaries, realizing that chaos and cultural barriers are merely about geogprahy. In this sense, it's worth noting how Istanbul culture, in the process of westernization, distinguishes itself from fashion identity by becoming a synthesised form. Turkish fashion is supported not only by designers, but also by broad fashion organizations, as a result of this vision. Organizations such as Fashion Designers Assocation, Istanbul Fashion Academy, and Fashion Week Istanbul all increase the precision of Istanbul's fashion scene by offering the right solutions to designers, bringing them into view, likewise new talents.
Speaking of; cultural dualism in fashion Hussein Chalayan’s iconic ‘Between’ collection is the first thing on the list. Way back then, Chalayan wanted to address "the cultural lack of self" with "Between," and used chadors of differing lengths to shed light on the injustice of Islamic women within society, focusing on his own upbringing in the midst of social upheaval between the opposites of Greek Christians and Turkish Muslims. These dualities appear in every society and proceed to include fashion with unlimited resources. As a consequence, Turkish designers are pretty impressed by Istanbul's polyphonic background; in one side, there are the religionists, and on the other, libertarians.
Turkish designers find inspiration in the fact that they are caught in the middle between two continents. While one of the conventional strategies of success in the past was to raise standards and bring the demand and fashion label to each and every corner of the globe, the early age wave of local designers are continuing to shift the fashion market in their own countries in new, even radical ways. Istanbul Fashion Week is a celebration of this new paradigm, with fashion and art influenced by the city's streets as well as Turkey's wider sounds.
As a result, designers are aware of how to use their cultural background as an exciting element. Istanbul's dynamic, spider-web-like cultural heritage makes it possible designers to manifest themselves in their collections and brings a narrative aspect to their work.
Author: Zeynep Gür