Every now and then, I come across a dress or an outfit that I really like but I’m not sure about buying it; many people would call it 'un-Islamic' or against 'religious values'. But over the years, I’ve mastered some amazing hacks to actually make these pretty outfits more wearable for us, Hijabi ladies. Whether the dress is too short or too revealing, you can pretty much always find a way around it and make it look like the most modest outfit that you’ve ever seen. The same goes for all those girls who are new to modest fashion - there’s no need to throw out all your old clothes and go around looking for new ones. We can still wear our favourite outfits, as all they need is a little modification.
Altering Your Outfit
Let’s start with dresses that are too short. If you are good at stitching then this is a pretty simple DIY and if not then you can seek professional help from a tailor. Ruffles can make any dress look cuter and at the same time they add length to your outfit. Sewing ruffles isn’t such a big deal and I feel you can learn it in just a day by watching a few video tutorials.
If you’re not a fan of ruffles, there are still a number of other options available such as lace or net. Not all of us can afford a complete wardrobe change. So if you have any old t-shirts that you feel that you can no longer wear, turn them into quirky scarves to go with your hijabs.
For dresses without sleeves; you again have the option of either stitching them on or just wearing a t-shirt under it. You can see that as a fashionable hijabi, you pretty much have to make layers your best friend.
Being ethical includes the responsibility of caring for the environment, which is also a part of our religious obligations. At the same time, we are also told by our religion to always choose a moderate path, so while there’s no need to act like a miser, we also don’t have to waste our money unnecessarily.
This is where the thrift stores come in; I find them to be a perfect place for hijabis as we can find some awesome second-hand items here. Set a monthly budget for yourself and when you go shopping always make the thrift stores your first priority as this way you won’t be wasting any money and will also be playing your part for the environment. Also, don’t forget to recycle your old outfits and hijabs. When you’re done wearing any of them, you can either sell them at a thrift store or just start a hijab swapping community with your friends and family.
Focus More on the Hijab
Instead of focusing on your outfit, try to focus on your hijab more as a nicely matched and well-styled hijab can make all the difference. You don’t need to invest in a lot of hijabs as well. Just make sure you have a few solid neutrally coloured hijabs that can go with most of your outfits.
Add some variety
Buy hijab accessories so you can give a different look to the same hijab every time. Experiment with different hijab styles as there are hundreds of them and try coming up with your own signature style. Choose a hijab that goes well with your skin tone and one last thing, always make sure that the hijab style that you choose, complements your face shape as your hijab can work as well as some of the best contouring kits in the world.
As hijabis, we are all blessed with this willingness to adhere to our religious values, and this also gives us the unique ability to be able to think outside the box. So use this ability wisely and creatively when it comes to ethical fashion. Let’s just promise ourselves that we’ll never feel that a modest outfit restricts us in any way and that we’ll continue to shine in our beautiful hijabs!
Author: Sarah Ghanem
Sarah is a hijabista and fashion consultant. She is really keen on modern, but modest Muslim wear for women, and she’s always trying out new hijab styles and trends.