Saudi Arabia’s ‘Fashion Future’ online event focuses on sustainability & diversity

By Shilpa Annie Joseph, Official Reporter
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Saudi Arabia’s flagship fashion event, Fashion Futures has relaunched as a digital platform with a live event titled “Fashion Futures Live: Moving Towards Sustainability, Diversity, and Innovation.”

The event, which was live-streamed to participants via a specially designed interactive virtual platform, featured some of the fashion industry’s most inspiring leaders, digital distributors, and a selection of famous figures.

According to the statement, the contents are divided into four important pillars and they are entrepreneurship and experimentation; diversity, inclusivity, and the necessity of empowering women, not just as customers but also as makers of fashion; investment in new business models; and progressing the Sustainable Development Goals.

Princess Noura bint Faisal Al Saud, sector development director of the Saudi Ministry of Culture’s Fashion Commission, gave the opening address, emphasizing the significance of collaboration, which was a recurring topic throughout the day. Ms. Chantal Line Carpentier led the first session, discussing the role of fashion and the creative sectors in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.

“We are living in a transition point in the planet, after 200 years of industrialization. Our generation is the luminaries of this new era. We need collaboration; we need as soon as possible to change knowledge and practices,” said Mr. Oskar Metsavaht, founder of fashion brand Osklin and a Unesco ambassador for sustainability in Brazil, in a panel session called Building a Legacy: Fashion x Design.

Ms. Nadja Swarovski, chair of the Swarovski Foundation, has highlighted how fashion has always been about “creative problem solving”. Further, she has noted that the pandemic could reflect a tipping point for the industry and society at large.

Mr. Burak Cakmak, CEO of the Fashion commission commented, “If we can change fashion, which is so complex and so fragmented, we can change everything. We can inspire other industries, as well as individuals, to follow suit.” Mr. Cakmak concluded the event with the 17th session titled “Future of Fashion is Now.”

The Fashion Commission unveiled the “Fashion Futures” initiative in 2019 as the first event dedicated to fashion in the Kingdom and revamped it in 2021 as a prominent digital platform in the fashion sector.

Related: Fashion Commission unveils Saudi 100 Brands Program to support emerging designers