Is Turkey The Next Fashion Production Hot Spot?

Atelier 55

Istanbul’s Atelier 55 is known for both its Western labels and its roster of Turkish designers.

China’s haute fashion industry is flourishing.  Western designers increasingly turn to India’s artisans for high-end production and creative innovation.  Which country, previously considered a mere manufacturing hub, should we look to next?

Turkey, with its deliberately high import tariffs on both textiles and cheaply-made clothing, is positioning itself as a go-to for high-end fabrication and as a fashion innovator in its own right.   Ermenegildo Zegna and Hugo Boss, for example, have established factories in the region, but homegrown designers are simultaneously on the rise.  The denim brand Mavi is collaborating with the progressive Turkish designer Hussein Chalayan specifically to make a bigger impression in Western markets.  Besides offering a more aggressively stylish line, the brand will be raising prices (at least, on this collection) in order to sell through more upscale channels.  The range goes debuts in November.

Meanwhile, stores like Istanbul’s Atelier 55 get plenty of Western press for their fashionable side-by-side offering of European, American, and Turkish designers.  The next installment of Istanbul Fashion Week starts on October 10th — it hasn’t been on our international (Internet) viewing list before, but we won’t miss it again.

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