Fashion as a Political Statement
The marriage between politics and fashion has long been a tool that fashion designers have used to make statements through their clothing lines. Art is a way for people to express their ideals, thoughts, feelings, and others, which is why designers - such as Vivienne Westwood - have protested against war, global warming, climate change, terrorism and police brutality on the runways of the biggest fashion shows. One designers from the United Arab Emirates has also used the power of clothes for this. His name is Khalid bin Sultan Al Qasimi, and he is an Emirati designer based in London. His collections are worldwide renowned and he has dressed personalities such as Lady Gaga.
He recently relaunched his label, Qasimi, in London, and his elegant collections are a reminder that relationships between East and West need to be taken seriously. He wants to question the perception of the Arab world. He achieves this through the actual fabric used in the manufacturing of his clothes. The translucent quality of the cottons used are his way of showing how the truth is clouded, hard to see through. For Qasimi, London is an important place, a place that inspired his fashion sense, a place that gave him the opportunity to excel at his passion. Cool Britannia was important for him because it inserted his fashion sense, and he can’t see himself anywhere else. Although his home is in the Emirates, he shares his time between both places equally. After all, he grew up in the United Kingdom - and he claims the UAE is too hot sometimes to be pleasing.
Qasimi’s passion for fashion has led his label to walk the most important runways, including - of course - London Fashion Week, when he first launched his brand before basing it in Paris. His strong ideas translate through his beautifully tailored clothing and his dual statements - the idea of bringing together two separate worlds (inspiring himself in Muslims in London attending religious services with traditional tunics mixed with sportswear) -, and he is making a unique mark in the fashion world.