The Kazna Asker fashion collection combines Islamic fashion and sportswear

Informed by her British upbringing and Yemeni heritage, Central Saint Martins graduate Kazna Asker has created a clothing collection that combines sportswear design with traditional Middle Eastern fabrics and silhouettes.

The collection, named Watered by One Water, was presented at the Central Saint Martins MA 2022 fashion show and was the first MA show at the school to feature models in hijab.

A model with the Kazna Asker collection on the runway
The Asker clothing collection includes tracksuits and a hijab cloak

“I am very grateful that we were able to showcase the diversity of Britain and present Islamic fashion and fabrics from the Middle East to the West from a minority perspective,” Asker told Dezeen.

Asker, who grew up in Sheffield, designed traditional Islamic garments such as the jilbab, abaya and thobe in water-resistant nylon fabric and added sportswear details including drawstrings, zips and pockets.

A model with the Kazna Asker collection on the runway
Watered by One Water combines traditional Islamic clothing and sportswear

The collection also includes cargo pants, jackets and tracksuits decorated with traditional Middle Eastern woven fabrics.

“I’ve always been a tomboy, and I remember all my childhood seeing and wearing Nike and Adidas tracksuits and sneakers,” Asker said. “So I guess sportswear has always come naturally to me!”

Asker designed the collection in pairs of matching menswear and womenswear to represent the brotherhood and sisterhood of her local community.

“I was really inspired by the local community in Sheffield and how we adapted our culture and traditions while still designing and strengthening the Muslim community,” Asker said.

“I think there are a lot of negative connotations associated with the hijab, Islamic modesty and the Muslim community, so I deliberately designed matching menswear and womenswear to show the brotherhood and sisterhood of our community and that we are all united. .”

A model with the Kazna Asker collection on the runway
The fashion collection features a jilbab track suit made of nylon

To better represent Muslims in Sheffield, Asker invited people from her local community to describe what ‘community’ means to them and what inspires them.

The responses were compiled into a graphic design and printed on the back of the hijab.

Asker won the Debut Talent Award at the Fashion Trust Arabia 2022 Awards for her fashion collection Watered by One Water, which was recognized for her work with the community.

Two hijab models in the Watered by One Water collection
Traditional woven fabrics were incorporated into the collection. Photo by Farid Renais Ghimas

“I hope more Muslim girls apply to Central Saint Martins and see themselves in my collection and feel empowered to be there,” Asker said.

“I hope that a small door has been broken down to showcase more diverse fashion and represent people in a true and honest way,” the designer continued.

Other creative designs created by Central Saint Martins graduates include a solar-heated blanket and a printer that projects light onto eyelashes and creates images on fabric, ceramic or paper.

Photography courtesy of Central Saint Martins unless otherwise noted.

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