ORLANDO, Fla. (WOFL FOX 35) - History is being made in Orlando, through fashion. A local business owner is breaking barriers and cashing in on the untapped Muslim market.
Lisa Vogl is Muslim, and she's living the American Dream. She opened "Verona Collections" about two months ago at the Orlando Fashion Square Mall. It's one of the nation's first Islamic boutiques to open inside an American mall. "It's exciting and it's to do things that are ground breaking," said Verona Collections founder and creator Lisa Vogl.
"Verona Collections" at Orlando Fashion Square Mall is the only one of its kind in Florida. "Obviously our main customer base are Muslims but we get a lot of non-Muslims as well," said Vogl.
Lisa Vogl started selling her fashion online and connected with customers through social media. Demand is so high she decided to open shop at Orlando Fashion Square Mall and in two month's time sales are up 25-percent. "It's been really increasing day by day," said Vogl.
You name it, they have it: from dresses to athletic wear. Most of the items are listed under a hundred dollars. According to the State of the Global Islamic Economy Report in 2014 Muslim consumers spent about $230-billion on clothing. That's 11-percent of the global economy. Designers are noticing the surge in purchasing power.
"I think some big brands that we're seeing Dolce & Gabbana and other big international brands are realizing that, as a woman and as a Muslim woman, and as a Muslim woman who cover I want to look good too! We don't want to throw on something frumpy and throw on any scarf and walk out, we want our scarf to match our top, to match our shoes, to match our purse," said Nadine Abu-Jubara who works at Verona Collections.
Vogl says the next step will be expanding into more European markets "We have our eye sight set on London right now so that's going to be coming very soon," said Vogl.