Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe on the power of fashion

On a cold afternoon, as I entered the female political ward in Evin prison, something very familiar caught my eyes; an old grey industrial sewing machine on a wooden stand, right by the entrance, resting quietly with its flap tilted over. Next to it, there was a sign on the wall: “The hours to use the sewing machine are between 10 to 12am every Sunday and Wednesday. Please ensure any garments are washed before handing them over to Fatemeh for mending.”

I had been a political pawn between Iran and the UK for six years, during which I spent time between solitary confinement, prison and under house arrest. During the first nine months of my detention, I was kept in a cell with no fresh air or natural light. Once I entered the cell, they made me remove all my clothing and put on a uniform. It was compulsory as everyone had to look the same.

preview for The making of Prada's most intricate embroideries

The uniform in dull pink consisted of a manteau – a long-sleeve gown with buttons in the front – and baggy trousers made of polyester. The fabric didn’t allow skin to breathe, so you felt hot and sweaty in the summer and cold in

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