Modanisa Offers A Look Into the Lack of Diversity in Modest Fashion
Salaam my lovelies! I hope that you kicked off the New Year with some new resolutions. I started with one of my own: to keep on blogging. Here is why:
The recent Dubai Fashion Week sponsored by Turkish modest fashion line Modanisa was exciting, but also puzzling. Hijabi fashion blogger Manal aka Chinutay shared how she was disappointed to see that there was a lack of diversity on the runway and among the modest fashion influencers asked to attend the show. Here is what she had to say:
“First off, what was obvious was not who was flown out but who wasn’t! I myself (apologies if I missed any influencer), was the only black woman to be flown out and participate out of MANY beautiful influential black women. Whilst there, I’ve had our sisters (WOC who live in Dubai and purchased tickets) come up to me anbd ask me what was very apparent…’Where are all the other black bloggers/influencers?'”
The struggle for diversity in the Muslim fashion world is very real. It seems that the ideal Muslim fashion blogger is thin, light-skinned and very much like an actual fashion blogger with a hijab on top of her head. While these bloggers work very hard to create beautiful content, there are so many more of us who attempt to shed light on the fact that Muslims are a billion-plus deep population with so many more faces and bodies.
For me, it has always been a struggle to find modest fashion clothing that will actually fit and flatter a curvy body type. Admit it, how many of you even follow a plus-size or curvy modest fashon blogger? Yet, we have countless women who wear hijab that fall into this category! How important is it to see a valid representation of the runway of what the actual Muslim population looks like?
This is why I am starting back up on blogging. We NEED diversity. We need more women of color modest fashion influencers. We need more body positivity in the Muslim fashion world. This is my personal truth and I hope that it speaks to your personal truth too. For far too long, we have been silent, but I hope that my blog inspires you to embrace who you are too. I hope that you embrace my personal journey and start your own to love yourself the way that you were made.
Love to you all.
Styled By Zubaidah offers plus size hijabis stylish yet modest clothing options.
Salaam my loves! It really has been a long time since I have blogged. This time, it is because I am stuck in the throes of being a new mama to the most wonderful little boy alhamdulillah. Between working full time and taking care of two little ones, it doesn’t leave much time for blogging.
However, now that I am a second time mom, I have noticed that the weight I gained from this pregnancy has not been coming off quite so easily. As a result, I am now plus size. Yes, I can honestly admit that I am a size 10-12 instead my usual size 6-8. It hasn’t been too hard on me to recognize that, but what has been hard is trying to dress modestly without wearing a tent-like mumu.
Enter Styled by Zubeidah. Zubaidah Abdul-Hakim, founder and sole designer for Styled by Zubaidah says, “My product is designed for the Curvy Muslim Woman who has always found it difficult to purchase clothing that fits her well, maintains her modesty, and still makes her feel unique and beautiful.”
She founded the line in 2013 for plus sizes 12 and larger. While her line is targeted for plus sized hijabis, she also designs for hijabis with curves in mind. Her pieces are not just larger versions of what is already out there. She uses fabrics that are stretchy but not clingy, fabrics with fun patterns, and other design techniques to ensure that plus size hijabis look beautiful in a tasteful modest way.
So if you are a curvy hijabi looking some modest fashion options without the hassle of layering, check this line out. I will be styling her cream abaya on Instagram soon, so keep an eye for it inshallah.
Kimono cardigans are great layering piece for modest outfits.
Modest outfits pulled together by stylish hijabi bloggers have never been hotter. One hot hijab trend for summer has been the kimono cardigan. It is lightweight and skims over areas where hijabis tend to be modest. I personally love the kimono because it allows you to layer without adding too much bulk which is especially nice for curvy hijabis. Let’s be real: curvy hijabis have to be a little more creative if we want to translate what most hijabi bloggers wear into our own closet.
Kimono cardigans are versatile. You can pair the kimono cardigan with a jumpsuit, jeans, flowy palazzo pants and even layer on top of maxi dresses. It adds a layer of texture and interest to an outfit. For more of a fitted look, you can add a belt like the image above. Lengths of kimono cardigans vary, but I personally prefer longer ones since I am a petite hijabi. When I wear longer cardigans, it tends to lengthen my whole body versus cutting the visual lines and making me look too squat. I love that the kimono cardigan can work for any body shape.
It is also a great piece for a hijabi in any age group. When I was rocking my kimono cardigan, my mother in law loved it so much. So I surprised her with her own kimono and she rocks it all the time now alhamdulillah. Since the kimono is more of a trendy piece, I tend to stick to more affordable options.
Here are my top affordable picks for a kimono cardigan:
Urban Outfitters Floral Kimono
Forever 21 Eyelash Lace Kimono
Forever 21 Long Floral Lace Kimono
Zara Flowing Kimono Jacket
Are you rocking the kimono this summer? What are your favorite kimono cardigans? Let me know in the comments below:
I have an admission to make. Ever since the atrocities of Gaza, I have not been able to blog about Hijabi Life (food, faith, parenting and fashion). Why is that? It seems frivolous. Children are suffering all over the world and I am writing about the best eyeliner or hijabi fashion trend? How out of touch does that make me sound as a Muslim American who is privileged enough to live in peace and prosperity? Let’s take a lesson from Marie Antoinette and not be complacent with our comforts.
However, the news has taken to breaking my heart and I can’t stay silent any more. With attacks like the Sydney Siege and Peshawar, it seems like the Muslim narrative is being written by a few extremists and I refuse to let them speak for me. It is my responsibility to use my privileged position to not only speak out against these sick individuals, but try to help make the world a better place with my own actions. Muslims need to get out of the reactionary mindset and start doing things. Far too often we see Muslims reacting to what extremists do.
How about if Muslims band together and actually do something versus reacting? Instead of criticizing those who are doing something, get out and do something good.
Instead of the typical knee jerk reaction to the news, I ask you all for a favor. Let’s do something to make the world a better place. Let’s volunteer in our communities. Let’s take a moment out of the bubble of our own lives to empathize with those who are less fortunate. It can be as simple as donating to your local food bank or reading to kids in the library. When we look at the Sunnah of the Prophet (saws), we will see he was never ever harsh. Why is it that we are so harsh and hard hearted? Extremists are the polar opposite of the teachings of Muhammed (saws) and actually reflect the way people were in the time of Jahiliyya (time before Islam). Let’s pray to God that we are not like them. I am grateful for my family, health and other blessings, but it is time to start giving back. What will you do to give back for your own blessings?
Curvy hijabis can look fab too!
Salaams my lovelies! I hope you all had a wonderful weekend inshallah! I had a great one too. I spent my weekend catching up on reading all about how empowered hijabis are becoming. In fact, the rise of fashion hijabi bloggers caught the eye of The Daily Beast. It was wonderful in every single way except when I looked at all of the hijabi bloggers featured, none of them were even close to a size 6 or up. I love all of my hijabi sisters no matter what size they are, but it was so disheartening to see the lack of inclusion of any hijabis who are curvy or even plus sized.
It is already challenging to be a hijabi, now try adding curves to the mix! There are so many times where I will see a hijabi fashion blogger look absolutely darling in an outfit only to try it on and discover I look like an elephant in the very same outfit. Or I look a little TOO good for a hijabi… It’s a fine line to walk modesty with fashion if you have a fuller chest believe me. There isn’t a maxi hijab in the world that can cover my chest so I typically have to wear a cardigan or jacket to cover my assets up! It can be hard to see why a curvy hijabi would bother with trying new fashion trends. But, those trends can sometimes help you enjoy wearing hijab and feel empowered to talk to others about Islam. Fashion isn’t just about looking good, its about the confidence you get. It allows you to transform yourself into an intelligent human being who has something to say. It is definitely not about hiding in a sea of boring clothes, so take heart if you have as hard of a time styling yourself as I do.
Fellow curvy hijabis, I am here for you. It is all about taking a trend and making it your own. Are there any hijabi fashion trends that you would like me to modify and blog about? Let me know. In the meantime, keep reading for hijabi fashion tips that work for all sizes here!
Hjabi Friendly Maxi Skirt
Spring is almost here which means hijabis are starting to tuck away their knee high boots and thinking about long, floaty, maxi skirts in colorful pastels. One of the things that is challenging for curvy hijabis is how to wear a pleated maxi skirt without adding extra bulk.
One way that curvy hijabis can sport the pleated maxi skirt is to wear a high waisted pleated skirt versus one that is pleated down to the hem. This way, you get graceful drapes below with pleats that define your hourglass shape. I found the perfect pleated maxi skirt at JCPenney from the Buffalo Jeans collection. Another bonus is that it is fully lined versus other maxi skirts that only have a mid length lining (I always find this to be super annoying). One thing to note is that this skirt still needs a slip because the lining is too sheer for hijabis.
For $35, I think this skirt is not just cute, but it’s a steal!