Dazed Digital



October 3, 2011

A Dubai-based fashion label that supports refugees in Jordan, Lebanon and the greater region

  • Text by Simone Sebastian

After decades of high-end imported fashion, Dubai is slowly starting to support and pay attention to young independent designers. One homegrown label that has been garnering attention both in the city and the greater region, is a label headed by two Dubai-based siblings. Palestyle is a socially conscious label that works with Palestinian refugees to produce accessories and clothing with a cultural aesthetic. Satellite Voices caught up with siblings Ahmed and Zeina Abou Chaaban to find out more about the brand.

Satellite Voices: How does the label support and give back to Palestinian refugees?
Ahmed and Zeina Abou Chaaban: Palestyle today depends on over 80 refugee women both in Jordan, and Lebanon that hand embroid the pieces. These refugee women are paid for each piece they embroid in addition to receiving a percentage of sales from all Palestyle merchandise. We are very glad to have a strong relationship with our refugee camps and are very proud to be able to contribute to the lives of these women, thereby affecting their lives their families as well as keeping the culture alive through their embroidery.

SV: The label is based in Dubai, has the local fashion scene inspired you in any way?
Ahmed and Zeina Abou Chaaban: Our designs are getting great appreciation from around the world but we can definitely say that it all started here in Dubai, so if it wasn’t for the Dubai’s cosmopolitan fashion scene we wouldn’t have been able to satisfy and better understand all tastes and styles around the world.

SV: Whats next for Palestyle?
Ahmed and Zeina Abou Chaaban: We hope to develop a workshop exclusively for Palestyle where we employ refugee women and support them with a full time job that guarantees their comfort and financial entry. We currently support over 80 women, but we look forward to making it a three figured number. We as well hope to expand the business in order to project awareness on the beauty of our culture and heritage and ultimately reach more people and help more women.

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