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Uzbekistan: Fashion Industry Flourishing in Post-Gulnara Era

Uzbekistani fashion designer Saida Amir is part of a crop of talented, go-getting designers pushing Uzbekistan’s garment industry forward following the removal of Gulnara Karimova from the country’s fashion scene. Many young designers are playing to the sector’s natural strengths, taking inspiration from the centuries-old traditions of Uzbekistani textiles and putting a modish 21st-century twist on them. (Photo: Joanna Lillis)

Political intrigue in Uzbekistan may have removed first lady of glitz Gulnara Karimova from the fashion scene, but an abiding appetite for style in Tashkent is enabling the emergence of bold, young designers.
 
When she was still at the top of her game in Uzbekistan, Karimova designed and promoted her eponymous Guli luxury brand of fashion accessories, and rubbed shoulders with international celebrities at top catwalk shows. Her status as the president’s eldest daughter, however, could not prevent her downfall last February, when she was placed under house arrest on suspicion of corruption amid rumors of jostling for influence and family feuds.
 
With Guli gone, Uzbekistan’s fashion industry is now showing it is far more than just Karimova.
 

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Joanna Lillis is a freelance writer who specializes in Central Asia.

Uzbekistan: Fashion Industry Flourishing in Post-Gulnara Era

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