It’s Vogue for the veiled! Turkish fashion magazine created for women who wear headscarves
By Katie Silver
A magazine for the modern, fashion-conscious Muslim woman is proving that when it comes to Turkey, you don’t need bikinis, breasts and legs to sell issues.
Outraged when he saw photos of transsexuals in a magazine, devout Muslim Ibrahim Burak Birer, 31 decided to create a magazine in Istanbul that would contest the ‘diktat of nudity’.
With his friend Mehmet Volkan Atay, 32, he created Alâ, a magazine described as the avant-garde of ‘veiled’ fashion.
The first issue: Released in June, Alâ has been described as the ‘Vogue of veiled fashion’. It appeals to the modern, education, fashion-conscious Muslim woman
The magazine only shows women in headscarves
Alâ, which is Turkish for ‘the most beautiful of the beautiful’, only shows models in headscarves and will only advertise clothing that conforms to Islamic customs.
‘Cosmopolitan, Elle, Vogue, Marie Claire, it’s all about sex and naked skin,’ says Mr Birer. ‘The motto is that sex sells. But we, and millions of women around the world, believe that fashion can also be different.’
Despite having only six issues under their belt, the magazine has been so successful that they have needed to increase circulation multiple times.
The magazine now has a circulation of 30,000 with some 5,000 subscriptions are sent abroad.
‘We had no experience with magazines before that. We’re marketing people,’ Mr Atay told SpiegelOnline. ‘We specialised in recognising market niches.’
1,500 of the subscriptions are sent to Germany alone where the magazine has a big following amongst devout Turkish migrants.
As a result, entrepreneurial Mr Birer and Mr Atay said they could definitely foresee coming out with a German Alâ in the future.
And not just a Muslim product, it would be marketed to all females since the ‘battle against nudity’ is important to all women, Mr Birer said.
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Selling for 9 lira, or £3.20, it has been described as ‘the Vogue of the veiled’ by German magazine Radikal.
Atay and Birer have found a product for an increasingly prevalent part of Muslim society: the educated, fashion-focused woman with disposable income who still believes in wearing the veil.
Creating the magazine: Mr Brier and Mr Atay attribute their success to finding an untapped market
Creating the magazine: Mr Brier and Mr Atay attribute their success to finding an untapped market. Their backgrounds are in marketing, not magazine publishing
Mr Birer was fed up of the ‘dikat of nudity’ in found in others women’s magazines such as Cosmopolitan and Vogue
But the men have faced objections from their own camp with one theologian complaining that women should be submissively behind rather than putting themselves forward.
‘That’s not our understanding of Islam,’ says Mr Atay. ’We don’t believe that women should hide themselves. Even the veiled have a right to stylish fashion.’
via Alâ: Turkish fashion magazine created for women who wear headscarves | Mail Online.