Turkmenistan Leads the Way in Textile Production
Last weekend at the Riga Textiles Expo the FashionCapital team got the chance to network with textile representatives from all over the globe. In particular the team were highly impressed with the Textile Ministry of Turkmenistan and the fashion house ‘The Turkmenistan House of Models’ – one of the leading fashion houses in the country.
For those unfamiliar Turkmenistan is one of the leading countries in the production of textiles, particularly silk and cotton which is exported all over the world.
The collection shown at Riga entitled: ‘The Silk Road’ was a good representation of the textile industry of Turkmenistan; from raw materials to design to decorative arts. Utilizing materials produced from natural silk – velvet and another silk fabric that is unique to the country; Kitene. Kitene is unique to the area; it’s a material that has the qualities of cotton, silk, taffeta, and linen. To this day Kitene is made by hand, and because of the size of the loom, only 30cm in width, it creates challenges in design which force designers to look at construction in a different way.
For The House of Models collection another material unique to the country was specifically developed with a velvet factory and used to create a series of shawls with traditional motifs in velvet on chiffon.
The accessories included in the collection are all antique silver ornaments. These are usually passed from generation to generation. Made of silver, gold, turquoise and a local red stone they are all made by skilled jewellers who have been making these ornaments for generations.
While The House of Models collection used entirely silk, Turkmenistan is actually known for its cotton. Thanks to a rich harvest of cotton each year, Turkmenistan produces, on average, USD 380 million in cotton textiles. 70-80% of this is then exported to the USA, UK, Europe, Turkey, Canada, India, Korea, and other countries across the world. In the years since independence was achieved the textile industry of Turkmenistan has risen colossally, and each year new businesses open big and small, flourishing and growing along with the country.
Each year, the textile industry is celebrated with an event during the first week of June, this features fashion shows that not only include silk materials, but also denim, jersey and cotton as well as other materials produced in Turkmenistan.
Thanks to Ayna Niyazova for this brief insight into Turkmenistan Textile production and the collection by The House of Models.