Fashion Is Freedom

Fashion Is Freedom

-Tala, thank you for opening my eyes to how important fashion and the freedom of choice is for all women ... Every day I am grateful that I can choose whatever the hell I want to wear without the fear of punishment or violence or imprisonment.' Jesinta Campbell

For the first time, Australian media has access to the extraordinary story of how a woman who was sentenced to forty lashes for the crime of wearing a mini-skirt in Iran was inspired to found an international fashion empire. For Tala Raasi the experience caused an internal -revolution' to follow her dreams and create a better world.

Even as a little girl Tala Raassi adored fashion. But growing up in Iran, where a woman could be punished under Islamic law for exposing her hair in public, Tala was forced to keep her experiments under wraps at private parties. After a raid by religious police, 16-year-old Tala found herself in prison and sentenced to forty lashes of a whip – for the crime of wearing a mini-skirt.

Tala's punishment for -indecent clothing' fanned the flames of rebellion and led to a new life in the US. When Tala wrote -Crime of the Mini Skirt' for Marie Claire magazine, her story went global and Newsweek called her -One of the Most Fearless in the World'. The likes of Rachel Ray and Elle gave Tala the platform to argue that fashion is a symbol of freedom. It marked the beginning of a bold new life.

Fashion is Freedom take us on an extraordinary journey from Tehran to Columbia, centre stage at the Miss Universe contest, and a new life heading an international fashion empire and supporting charities that focus on empowering women. Tala's story will inspire women everywhere to be fearless and follow their dreams.

Tala Raassi, an Iranian American fashion designer, was born in the United States and raised in Tehran. Named one of the -Most Fearless Women in the World' by Newsweek magazine, Raassi made her mark in the fashion world at an early age with her talent in exclusive swimwear. She is devoted to celebrating the beauty of women's bodies through her designs and to empowering women all around the world to follow their dreams. For Raassi, -Fashion is Freedom'.

Fashion Is Freedom
Author: Tala Raassi
ISBN: 9781925344974
RRP: $29.99

Interview with Tala Raassi

Question: What inspired you to write Fashion Is Freedom?

Tala Raassi: There are a few reasons I decided to write Fashion is Freedom.

Many entrepreneurs are struggling to make ends meet and when you decide to run your own business it can get very lonely and at times it feels scary and impossible. I myself went through every single one of those feelings and somehow on my journey managed to get back up. My hope was for the readers to get inspired and follow their dreams no matter how hard the journey would be.

On the other hand it was very important for me to walk the readers through the streets of Tehran as a modern woman. The Western media only focuses on the Iranian government, politics, nuclear weapons and such. Although I personally had a very bad experience with the government, there is still so much more to Iran than that. Its extraordinary people, remarkable culture and the beauty of the country itself. It is a shame that it's not celebrated for all the good things that it has to offer and I hope that this book will allow people to see just why I love my country so much.

Question: Was it difficult to relive certain aspects of your life when writing Fashion Is Freedom?

Tala Raassi: Absolutely… No one likes to feel pain, heartbreak or struggle. Especially once you overcome them, you won't want to go back to those same exact feelings. But I came to realize that I am not the only person in the world who has flaws and faces obstacles in their lives. It is not always stories of success that inspires us but also the struggles people face in life and the way they overcome them. So as hard as it was to relive some of those moments in my life it was also a great way for me to realise just how much stronger I am today than I was when facing those obstacles.

Question: What do you hope readers take from Fashion Is Freedom?

Tala Raassi: I believe if you dream big enough it will make you fearless and once you are fearless the sky is the limit and you can achieve whatever it is that you want. I hope that this book will inspire people to want to peruse their dreams like I did.

Question: What's next, for you?

Tala Raassi: Well there is so much that I want to do. I want to continue to grow my company and expand my brand worldwide. I am also aiming to work on producing a documentary on my mission 'Fashion is Freedom." I would like to showcase the unglamorous behind the scenes of the most glamorous industry in the world as well as brining more awareness to what fashion means to different people in different parts of the world. What it means to a Muslim women, to the people who make the clothes, the ones who wear them on red carpets and every ordinary person from different backgrounds.

Interview by Brooke Hunter



Fashion Is Freedom
Author: Tala Raassi
ISBN: 9781925344974
RRP: $29.99



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