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Traditional Shemagh Becomes Big Business for Saudi Arabia

September 2, 2013 3:59 pm Published by

The Shemagh, also known as Keffiyah, is a traditional Arab headdress fashioned from a square of cotton. Originally worn by farmers and traders in arid regions such as Saudi Arabia and Qatar, its purpose was to provide protection from direct sun exposure, as well as blown dust and sand.  Today, the headdress has become increasingly popular, with many Arabs now including the item in their traditional Saudi dress.  The Saudi Arabia “Arab News” recently reported that sales of Shemagh are at a record high of 16 million pieces sold per year, totalling approx 900 million Saudi Riyals!

This has become a massive business for the Kingdom, especially during Ramadan where sales this year peaked at 8 million pieces bought in preparation for the celebration of Eid. Young Saudi designers are riding the wave of the new trend and have introduced a new variety of different colours to the market whilst modern designers such as Cavalli and Versace have bought their own twist to the traditional red and white design.

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This post was written by Kayleigh Driscoll

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