Fash­ion for­ward Eid cloth­ing

Sunday World - - Life & Style -

EID is all about wear­ing your best scarves and abayas, but it doesn’t have to be dull and bor­ing – let it be colour­ful and fash­ion­able.

Shahida Salie, of Cape Town, says she wears a scarf ev­ery day and never gets bored.

“Whether you’re don­ning it for Eid or ev­ery­day wear, it should be­come ev­ery woman’s ac­ces­sory,” she says.

(And a scarf works per­fectly for a bad hair day.)

An ac­coun­tant who has cov­ered her hair most of her life, Salie says wear­ing your scarf one way all the time is rather mun­dane.

She has come up with more than a hun­dred ways to tie a scarf, as she ex­plains in her new book, Scarf


“It can en­hance your beauty if draped in the right way,” she says.

“Wear­ing hi­jab in th­ese mod­ern times has be­come ef­fort­less and ex­cit­ing. I host many break­fast par­ties and show other women the skill; also how to adorn the scarf with brooches and pins and make a state­ment. You can still wear Western cloth­ing mod­estly by adding a bolero and a pair of jeans. Add the scarf and ac­ces­sories and the out­fit is com­plete,” says Salie.

She adds that more than one scarf can be used to achieve a dis­tinct look.

Amina Ab­bas agrees that hi­jab should be more trendy. She says it’s a myth that Mus­lim women have no in­di­vid­u­al­ity, style or piz­zazz.

Ab­bas is a young black de­signer who con­verted to the Mus­lim faith al­most 10 years ago.

“When I con­verted I knew that I had to change my dress code and cover my­self from head to toe. I worked as a di­rec­tor be­fore, I was a ca­reer woman who in­sisted on look­ing good.

“It does not mean that be­cause I changed my faith that I can’t still look beau­ti­ful. The prob­lem is I wanted to main­tain my in­di­vid­u­al­ity and your clothes say a lot about your per­son­al­ity. I still wanted to look fab­u­lous, ” she says.

Ab­bas was frus­trated be­cause ev­ery abaya she came across was black, bor­ing or – most dis­tress­ingly – clung to her curves.

“When you go shop­ping for th­ese things they tell you it’s cut ac­cord­ing to length, not size. But I’m an African woman with curves and hips. So I made my own clothes.”

Friends were im­pressed and asked her to sew for them, too. She now has a range un­der her label ZA Ab­bas that are colour­ful, stylish and cut for the cur­va­ceous woman.

Ab­bas showed off some of th­ese gar­ments at the Eid shop­ping fes­ti­val held at the Dome last month.

Her abayas draw on the mil­i­tary and marine trends in a range of colours from navy blue to olive greens. “I also tried to keep that African feel be­cause we are not Ara­bian. We should em­brace our her­itage.”

She uses only the best ma­te­rial, from cot­ton jersey fab­ric to soft linens and pure cot­tons. “The em­pha­sis is on com­fort. You are able to move around freely.”

Eid is also about kids. Sap­phire Style de­signer Dil­shaad Adam has put to­gether a stylish range of chil­dren’s abayas.

“When I cre­ated the range, I tried to be prac­ti­cal but still fol­low­ing in­ter­na­tional trends in the fash­ion world.

“So I used leather and studs, be­cause that is very on trend. I also in­cor­po­rated fur hood­ies and warmer fab­rics be­cause it’s win­ter,” ex­plains Adam.

“Kids are the most de­mand­ing when it comes to look­ing good on the day and they are fa­mil­iar with what ’ s hap­pen­ing in fash­ion.”

Adam says many moms have re­quested a mommy and daugh­ter range. “It’s not some­thing I usu­ally do, but the adults seem to like the stuff. Also, lit­tle girls want to look like grown-ups.”

With kids’ abayas, peo­ple should shop with prac­ti­cal­ity in mind. “Make sure they get the right length, colour and, prefer­ably, let them wear ones that open down the front.”

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