Despite the wide range of culture and fashion in Qatar, one garment is still preferred among both Qataris and residents of various nationalities: the Gulf abaya.
The abaya is "among the finest fashion items for Arab women", said Qatar resident Hiba al-Jamal, who began wearing the garment almost four years ago.
Today, she insists on wearing the abaya everywhere, even when travelling to her home country of Egypt.
Recently, however, higher demand has caused prices to reach what al-Jamal described as "an astronomical figure".
"I prefer abayas but the problem is that they are very expensive," she told Al-Shorfa. "The price for some of them exceeds $3,000 -- a highly inflated sum. I remember several years ago the price was no more than $100."
According to al-Jamal, the increasing prices reflect Western influences.
"Today there is an increased role for Western fashion, which started to enter the Gulf fashion line," she said.
Iqbal Kashmiri, a Pakistani designer based in Doha, is designing an abaya he believes might attract a lot of Qataris.
"Demand in Qatar is for abayas made in fashion boutiques, not the ready-made ones. This is what Qatari women prefer," Kashmiri told Al-Shorfa.
"Non-residents who wear abayas buy what is displayed in department stores, and the reason is often the price. Abaya design shops sell them at prices of $1,000 or more, while the abaya can be purchased ready-made at shopping malls for a quarter of that price," he said.
Despite the spread of international fashion stores in Doha, the Gulf abaya still occupies centre stage in sales, which, according to Qatari fashion designer Hiya Kuwari, is evidence of the beauty of this kind of fashion.
"The Gulf abaya has gone through several stages of development and has been met with an overwhelming response, not only among Qataris but also among residents in Qatar and the Gulf, either Arab or Western," she told Al-Shorfa.
"The reason is that this kind of fashion is amenable to development to suit an individual's tastes," Kuwari explained. "It was common for an abaya's colour to be black, but now the situation has changed. Abayas are designed in different colours like red, blue and green, to keep pace with fashion."
"Abaya fashion for the current season is diverse and been divided between chiffon and velvet," she said, adding that other styles currently lack the same level of demand.
Kuwari has also sensed a large demand for abayas in the West and has begun offering innovative designs for several European fashion houses.
"They appreciate this kind of fashion a great deal, especially those that move away from black."
"I have clients in Doha of European origin, and some of them turned the Gulf abaya into evening wear after getting away from the black."
Qatari women, Kuwari says, still remain faithful to the traditional black abaya.
"They refuse to call it an abaya unless it is black," she said.