Girls just wanna have fun, so designers play with traditional fashion!

Published December 15th, 2016 - 22:40 GMT

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How do you feel about modernizing Muslim religious garb?  Does it “normalize” conservative religious clothing, or can it potentially dispel the Western view of Muslim women as isolated and oppressed? Continue reading below »

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Born in Sweden to Jordanian parents, Iman Aldebe designs haute couture turbans now sold by exclusive retailers in the US, EU, and UAE. In 2007, she created a hijab for the Swedish police that is the official uniform for Muslim officers who opt to wear it. She's working on official hijab for the Swedish army, fire department, and medical workers.
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Image 1 of 8:  1 / 8Born in Sweden to Jordanian parents, Iman Aldebe designs haute couture turbans now sold by exclusive retailers in the US, EU, and UAE. In 2007, she created a hijab for the Swedish police that is the official uniform for Muslim officers who opt to wear it. She's working on official hijab for the Swedish army, fire department, and medical workers.

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Marwa Atik was born in California to Syrian parents. Her company is named VELA, and her passion for the veil is apparent in her exclusive creations, which feature unusual accents such as ruffles, lace, and zippers! She also designs new ways to wear the veils, transforming the look with new twist and fold techniques.
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Image 2 of 8:  2 / 8Marwa Atik was born in California to Syrian parents. Her company is named VELA, and her passion for the veil is apparent in her exclusive creations, which feature unusual accents such as ruffles, lace, and zippers! She also designs new ways to wear the veils, transforming the look with new twist and fold techniques.

Enlarge
Fyunka - which is Arabic for ribbon - is a Jeddah-based fashion line with illustrations and designs inspired by Khaleeji insights and influenced by pop culture. Handbags, clothing and accessories typically feature modern graphics of abaya-clad women. The brain-child of Saudi designer, Alaa Balkhy, its fans are legion.
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Image 3 of 8:  3 / 8Fyunka - which is Arabic for ribbon - is a Jeddah-based fashion line with illustrations and designs inspired by Khaleeji insights and influenced by pop culture. Handbags, clothing and accessories typically feature modern graphics of abaya-clad women. The brain-child of Saudi designer, Alaa Balkhy, its fans are legion.

Enlarge
Azza Fahmy heads one of Egypt's most internationally successful jewelry brands, often blinging up religious motifs. “For Arab women, jewelry is their safety, a tradition from peasant people. They don’t put money in the bank; they put it in their hands through precious jewelry, which they can sell whenever they need,” she explains.
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Image 4 of 8:  4 / 8Azza Fahmy heads one of Egypt's most internationally successful jewelry brands, often blinging up religious motifs. “For Arab women, jewelry is their safety, a tradition from peasant people. They don’t put money in the bank; they put it in their hands through precious jewelry, which they can sell whenever they need,” she explains.

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Fashion label DKNY unveiled a Ramadan-themed collection in 2014, featuring high necklines and low hemlines considered stylish yet culturally atuned to Muslim women looking to be simultaneously glam and modest. Dubai-based designer Tamara Al Gabbani and magazine fashion editor Yalda Golsharifi, who is Kuwaiti, created the styles for Donna Karan.
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Image 5 of 8:  5 / 8Fashion label DKNY unveiled a Ramadan-themed collection in 2014, featuring high necklines and low hemlines considered stylish yet culturally atuned to Muslim women looking to be simultaneously glam and modest. Dubai-based designer Tamara Al Gabbani and magazine fashion editor Yalda Golsharifi, who is Kuwaiti, created the styles for Donna Karan.

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Tribalogy is a creation with cause, producing many items produced in collaboration with skilled women from disadvantaged communities in Jordan. They providing modern designs using traditional materials which can be found in/around Jordan, turning up the whimsy factor on traditional images.
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Image 6 of 8:  6 / 8Tribalogy is a creation with cause, producing many items produced in collaboration with skilled women from disadvantaged communities in Jordan. They providing modern designs using traditional materials which can be found in/around Jordan, turning up the whimsy factor on traditional images.

(Source: tribeology)

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While not strictly religious, the keffiyeh is linked with strong Muslim political affiliations. Cecilie Jørgensen founded her label Cecilie Copenhagen while studying at the Danish Fashion Design Academy. Inspired by a traditional keffiyeh scarf, the statement fabric is offset by simple, relaxed silhouettes.  
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Image 7 of 8:  7 / 8While not strictly religious, the keffiyeh is linked with strong Muslim political affiliations. Cecilie Jørgensen founded her label Cecilie Copenhagen while studying at the Danish Fashion Design Academy. Inspired by a traditional keffiyeh scarf, the statement fabric is offset by simple, relaxed silhouettes.  

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Let's not ignore the men!  Etsy shopkeeper Fadila AAlouchi handsews roomy unisex 'saroual', a style of loose pant that predates Christianity. She stiteches them from cotton keffiyeh cloth in traditional Palestinian colors and patterns.
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Image 8 of 8:  8 / 8Let's not ignore the men! Etsy shopkeeper Fadila AAlouchi handsews roomy unisex 'saroual', a style of loose pant that predates Christianity. She stiteches them from cotton keffiyeh cloth in traditional Palestinian colors and patterns.

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Born in Sweden to Jordanian parents, Iman Aldebe designs haute couture turbans now sold by exclusive retailers in the US, EU, and UAE. In 2007, she created a hijab for the Swedish police that is the official uniform for Muslim officers who opt to wear it. She's working on official hijab for the Swedish army, fire department, and medical workers.

Image 1 of 8Born in Sweden to Jordanian parents, Iman Aldebe designs haute couture turbans now sold by exclusive retailers in the US, EU, and UAE. In 2007, she created a hijab for the Swedish police that is the official uniform for Muslim officers who opt to wear it. She's working on official hijab for the Swedish army, fire department, and medical workers.

2

Marwa Atik was born in California to Syrian parents. Her company is named VELA, and her passion for the veil is apparent in her exclusive creations, which feature unusual accents such as ruffles, lace, and zippers! She also designs new ways to wear the veils, transforming the look with new twist and fold techniques.

Image 2 of 8Marwa Atik was born in California to Syrian parents. Her company is named VELA, and her passion for the veil is apparent in her exclusive creations, which feature unusual accents such as ruffles, lace, and zippers! She also designs new ways to wear the veils, transforming the look with new twist and fold techniques.

3

Fyunka - which is Arabic for ribbon - is a Jeddah-based fashion line with illustrations and designs inspired by Khaleeji insights and influenced by pop culture. Handbags, clothing and accessories typically feature modern graphics of abaya-clad women. The brain-child of Saudi designer, Alaa Balkhy, its fans are legion.

Image 3 of 8Fyunka - which is Arabic for ribbon - is a Jeddah-based fashion line with illustrations and designs inspired by Khaleeji insights and influenced by pop culture. Handbags, clothing and accessories typically feature modern graphics of abaya-clad women. The brain-child of Saudi designer, Alaa Balkhy, its fans are legion.

4

Azza Fahmy heads one of Egypt's most internationally successful jewelry brands, often blinging up religious motifs. “For Arab women, jewelry is their safety, a tradition from peasant people. They don’t put money in the bank; they put it in their hands through precious jewelry, which they can sell whenever they need,” she explains.

Image 4 of 8Azza Fahmy heads one of Egypt's most internationally successful jewelry brands, often blinging up religious motifs. “For Arab women, jewelry is their safety, a tradition from peasant people. They don’t put money in the bank; they put it in their hands through precious jewelry, which they can sell whenever they need,” she explains.

5

Fashion label DKNY unveiled a Ramadan-themed collection in 2014, featuring high necklines and low hemlines considered stylish yet culturally atuned to Muslim women looking to be simultaneously glam and modest. Dubai-based designer Tamara Al Gabbani and magazine fashion editor Yalda Golsharifi, who is Kuwaiti, created the styles for Donna Karan.

Image 5 of 8Fashion label DKNY unveiled a Ramadan-themed collection in 2014, featuring high necklines and low hemlines considered stylish yet culturally atuned to Muslim women looking to be simultaneously glam and modest. Dubai-based designer Tamara Al Gabbani and magazine fashion editor Yalda Golsharifi, who is Kuwaiti, created the styles for Donna Karan.

6

Tribalogy is a creation with cause, producing many items produced in collaboration with skilled women from disadvantaged communities in Jordan. They providing modern designs using traditional materials which can be found in/around Jordan, turning up the whimsy factor on traditional images.

Image 6 of 8Tribalogy is a creation with cause, producing many items produced in collaboration with skilled women from disadvantaged communities in Jordan. They providing modern designs using traditional materials which can be found in/around Jordan, turning up the whimsy factor on traditional images.

(Source: tribeology)

7

While not strictly religious, the keffiyeh is linked with strong Muslim political affiliations. Cecilie Jørgensen founded her label Cecilie Copenhagen while studying at the Danish Fashion Design Academy. Inspired by a traditional keffiyeh scarf, the statement fabric is offset by simple, relaxed silhouettes.  

Image 7 of 8While not strictly religious, the keffiyeh is linked with strong Muslim political affiliations. Cecilie Jørgensen founded her label Cecilie Copenhagen while studying at the Danish Fashion Design Academy. Inspired by a traditional keffiyeh scarf, the statement fabric is offset by simple, relaxed silhouettes.  

8

Let's not ignore the men!  Etsy shopkeeper Fadila AAlouchi handsews roomy unisex 'saroual', a style of loose pant that predates Christianity. She stiteches them from cotton keffiyeh cloth in traditional Palestinian colors and patterns.

Image 8 of 8Let's not ignore the men! Etsy shopkeeper Fadila AAlouchi handsews roomy unisex 'saroual', a style of loose pant that predates Christianity. She stiteches them from cotton keffiyeh cloth in traditional Palestinian colors and patterns.

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Designers – eager to tap into a relatively underexploited Islamic womenswear sector - are tweaking traditional garments such as the headscarf and abaya, moving common, conservative clothing to high-priced haute couture. Others are spinning iconic Islamic details and motifs into fresh, fun, fashion accessories that appeal to Muslims and non-Muslims alike.

According to a 2014-2015 report by Thomson Reuters, Muslims globally spent $266bn on fashion in 2013, with a predicted rise to $484bn by 2019. With potential Islamic consumers numbering in the millions, Western labels are beginning to cater to regional tastes, and exploit well-loved fabrics. Stores that may once have refused to sell hijab are now capitalizing on Muslim fashion.

Is it haram or halal to put a playful interpretation on fashion meant to deflect undue attention? Is sporting shorts made from a Palestinian headscarf fashion-forward, or culturally disrespectful? Drop us a comment!

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