BESHTAR,

Southasia - - Fashion -

Dari for ‘more,’ is also an Afghan eth­i­cal fash­ion brand. Founded by Ca­role Naim, it sig­ni­fies that more should and can be done for Afghanistan -- and in­deed, for the de­vel­op­ing world. The la­bel earned in­ter­na­tional recog­ni­tion af­ter Livia Firth, wife of Os­car-win­ning ac­tor Colin Firth, wore a Beshtar burqa dress fea­tured by the Observer as part of Vogue’s Green Car­pet Chal­lenge in 2010.

Beshtar rein­ter­prets tra­di­tional Afghan tex­tiles with a mod­ern lens in­clud­ing vin­tage pieces to cre­ate hand­made burqa dresses, shirts, jack­ets, capes, harem pants and bags, and an evening­wear col­lec­tion of long silk dresses and evening gowns with Afghan em­broi­dery and adorn­ments. All crafts­man­ship and ma­te­rial sourc­ing takes place within Afghanistan to help up­lift the crafts in­dus­try. Rev­enues are do­nated to char­i­ta­ble Afghan or­ga­ni­za­tions that help Afghans be­come in­de­pen­dent and self-suf­fi­cient by pro­vid­ing mi­cro-fi­nance, vocational train­ing and em­ploy­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties. Th­ese in­clude Aschi­ana that funds the ed­u­ca­tion of chil­dren, Gar­dens for Life that pro­motes lit­er­acy among women, and the Afghan Womens Ed­u­ca­tion Cen­ter, cre­ated to aid Afghan refugees.

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