From Virtual Clothes to Programmed Embroidery: Is Tech Overtaking The Arab Fashion World?

The infamous metaverse may still be in its development phase yet it is said that there are plans for it to reshape and disrupt existing industries from real estate to education and sports. A few other industries are also following in tow with the fashion world already as it is beginning to stretch and dip its toes into this ever-evolving virtual realm.

Today fashion is becoming digitized. There are now clothing brands that are one hundred percent fully virtual. One known example is an online Croatian shop called the Tribute brand that recently opened in 2020. Every clothing item they sell is 3D rendered and made using CGI.

It’s the same concept of digital clothes for avatars on video games like the endless possible skins available on Fortnite yet now, it’s applicable to people. You can open their website and scroll through their wide selection of futuristic clothing options that combine translucent fabrics laced with neon colors. That is not the most interesting part; some of these items cost a whopping 699 dollars and yet, if you open their online store now, you will find that all their clothes are sold out.

This evolutionary form of fashion has also arrived all the way to Middle Eastern shores. The UAE, a country already known to be a hub for all things metaverse brought the virtual realm to its fashion world. They recently launched the very first virtual fashion week in the metaverse.

The 4-day event was hosted on Decentraland, an online virtual platform on March 24th and included some of the top brands showcasing their latest designs on the virtual catwalk including Dolce & Gabbana. It was a star-studded event with popular figures in the fashion industry like Tommy Hilfiger making an appearance using his avatar. It is important to note that despite the hype, there were several hiccups like glitchy graphics, long delays, and entire events turning completely black. It indicates that the current technology is still at a rudimentary phase and has a lot of progress to go.


Palestine has also taken the tech route when it comes to its clothing industry. To make their national dress, they ditched the traditional route of hand stitching which can take multiple weeks, and instead, are using large sewing machines that are computer programmed to stitch specific patterns onto large masses of fabric which are then cut by hand and stitched into the actual national dress known as the “Thob”.

These advancements merely showcase traces of what the fashion industry may eventually look like in the future. With the growing concept of the metaverse, we may see ourselves represented as avatars and heading to our favorite virtual store to pick out virtual outfits that we then can try on in virtual changing rooms. The idea is not too far-fetched and may happen sooner than expected as Facebook’s Meta already is planning to launch a digital store where people can dress their avatars in the metaverse.

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