SHUKR Islamic clothing, the first western brand to cater to modest dressers, has been in the Islamic clothing game for more than 15 years. With a strong focus on ethics, halal business practices, and quality design, SHUKR has proven that modest clothing is not just a fad, but a necessity for people around the world. Learn what drives this brand and how their ethos has led to success.
Tell us about the philosophy behind SHUKR Islamic Clothing.
Above all else, we believe in putting faith into fashion. The clothes that we wear as individuals are a reflection of who we are, what we value, and what we stand for. Our clothing is intended to promote a modest lifestyle in a way that is still fashionable by western standards and that allows people to feel confident as both a Muslim and a member of society.
Where does the inspiration behind SHUKR clothing designs come from and why are SHUKR styles unique?
The Divine is beautiful and loves beauty. We try to make our clothes a reflection of this timeless beauty. We have a wide range of collections, including practical day-to-day casual wear, active wear, prayer outfits and elegant abayas and gowns for special occasions. Many of our designs are embroidered, deriving inspiration from the rich heritage of Islamic art, with patterns and motifs found in classic Islamic arabesque and geometric designs.
Our design team travels the world to source high quality, natural fabrics with which to craft our unique designs.
Why do you not show faces in any of your photographs or ads?
Marketing in the mainstream fashion industry commonly exploits female (or male) physical beauty and we don’t want to carry this over into the Islamic clothing industry. We believe that the beauty of a woman lies in the depth of her heart and mind and we don’t want to help perpetuate society’s superficial obsession with the materialistic over the spiritual. We also don’t want to participate in creating insecurities in the common woman who inevitably compares herself to the unrealistic images of perfectly beautiful models seen in marketing campaigns. We want our customers to purchase our clothing because the style speaks to them, not because it is displayed on a beautiful model.
How do you define Islamic fashion, and how does it relate to business?
We strive to be a completely halal company in everything that we do. This is most evident in our modest designs and marketing, but it goes deeper than that. We all know the tendency of the mainstream fashion industry to use cheap labor and practices to create inexpensive items. SHUKR believes that is the incorrect way of running a business, and is completely unethical- the antithesis of halal. Our clothing is produced in our own sweatshop-free factories by fellow Muslims. SHUKR employees are compensated fairly and are treated with kindness, respect and, ultimately, as human beings with feelings, a spirit and a heart.
Tell us more about life for SHUKR employees
In our offices and factories we have built a supportive and kind community centered around our faith in Islam. From having the opportunity to pray together daily, to celebrating milestones, and participating in charity events, our employees care for one another in welcoming and nurturing office and factory spaces. It is important for us to encourage spiritual growth among our employees, as well as professional growth. Faith, fashion, respect and support are key themes that we value as a company.
What advice would you give to people trying to make it in the Islamic fashion industry?
Make your work something that counts in this life and the next life and don’t ever sacrifice the latter for the former by compromising on any Islamic values. Learn the Islamic rulings relating to every aspect of your business – the designs, the marketing, the employment contracts, the financing, and so on – and refer back to knowledgeable scholars who can guide you. You will never please everyone, but as long as you constantly try to keep your intentions in check and work as hard as you can to please our Creator, you will do something worthwhile, inshAllah.
Visit SHUKR at www.shukr.co.uk