The Arab Fashion Council (AFC) is sending five regional labels to Paris for men's fashion week.
Thanks to an initiative signed between the council and the Federation de la Haute Couture et de la Mode – which runs ready-to-wear and haute couture fashion weeks in Paris – 10 emerging brands will now benefit from being introduced to new markets.
Under the agreement, five French designers will take part in this month's men's fashion week in Dubai, while five regional labels will head to Paris.
Between Monday, June 28 and Wednesday, June 30, labels will showcase their spring/summer 2022 men's collections at Dubai Design District, streaming the presentations on Facebook Live and Instagram Live.
In addition to participating in the UAE event, the regional talents of Roni Helou, Emergency Room Beirut, Zaid Farouki, Proud Angeles and 1886 will also showcase their menswear at the Palais de Tokyo in the French capital.
The initiative is meant to raise the profile of designers from the Mena region to a European audience, through the special event curated by AFC called Arabs in Paris.
"There's no better feeling than being able to show our designs and share our story through fashion," streetwear-infused Saudi Arabian label 1886 told The National.
"We are honoured to be part of Paris Fashion Week; we have been looking forward to putting our mark in the fashion industry.”
Although a small name, the team is driven by passion.
“We are a very hard-working team and always make sure to present the best pieces possible, [so] we’re proud to be one of the top five brands.”
Lebanese brand Emergency Room Beirut, meanwhile, known for its sustainable practice of reworking deadstock and vintage fabrics, said that for a brand facing the hardship of the economic crisis in Lebanon, this was a shot in the arm.
“As the local market is crashing, being offered the chance to show our collection to international buyers will eventually allow us to reach international markets, allowing us to keep developing our label, sustain the brand and the people who make the brand.”
Describing itself as “young, disruptive and alternative", Emergency Room Beirut said being selected to show in Paris was "validating and encouraging our business model, constructed around the idea of sustainability".
"We truly hope that with [AFC] support, we'll be able to prove that the fashion industry can be more ethical and environmentally friendly.”
Closer to home, meanwhile, the next round of AFC shows will take place in conjunction with Dubai Design District. In a new agreement, d3 will play host to physical events, while virtual shows will continue to stream via Facebook Live and Instagram Live.