Wednesday, 24 February 2010

Hijab Inspiration - An interview with a hippy hijabi: Hannah Young

1) Assalamou Alaikom, Hannah! so tell us about yourself. How do you describle your personality? What do you do for a living?

I am working here in the UAE as a teacher at a school in Sharjah. I was born in England and moved here after completing my studies at home. I like to think that i'm confident, independent and liberal. I pride myself on gaining knowledge and education and living my own life freely, within the realms of Islam. I am 24 years old and I converted to Islam about a year ago, and started wearing hijab a couple of months after that. It was the biggest change in my life that I have ever experienced.

2) At what point did you realize that you want to wear hijab? How long have you been a hijabi?

After converting to Islam, I knew that at some point I would have to consider putting on the hijab. My clothes were easy, I started wearing long sleeved tops and long trousers and skirts and really didn't feel a change. It was quite soon after converting though, that I began to feel I wanted everyone to know I was Muslim now. I felt almost jealous of women in hijab who proudly advertised their religion. I was so happy to be Muslim, and I wanted everyone to know it!! I began to observe different hijab styles, and noticed how beautiful and stylish they can look. I started to experiment a little at home, and would wear hijab just if I was going to Mosque at first. Shortly after, I decided I was ready to wear it for good. I went shopping and bought a few pretty scarves and pins. Of course, being in the UAE, it's easy to go out in hijab. That was no problem. It was going into work wearing it that was difficult. I walked into the staff meeting that morning and had quite a few double-takes from people! But, after the initital shock, there were no problems. The next day it was just something normal to them, and to me.

4) How did you inform your family and friends that you have decided to wear the hijab?

When I went back to England for the first time, it was quite difficult. I had warned my parents that I would be covered, and they were so pleased to see me that it wasn't too much of an issue when they picked me up from the airport. But putting it on to go out of the house always made them uncomfortable, I could tell. It just takes time to get used to it. When I went back again recently, my dad told me I suit the scarf...and those words to me were just worth pure gold! Most friends back in England got used to it quickly. My girl friends have had me styling hijab on them....they see it as something quite fun!

5) What is your hijab style?

I like to wear the same clothes as I wore before I covered....I just have an endless supply of long sleeved tops to wear underneath! Usually I go for trousers and long tops, layered with cardigans. But I have really developed a love of maxi dresses recently. They're perfect for Muslim women, as they cover but are very feminine. They're also cool and floaty for the hot weather over here. No outfit is complete without accessories. I go for long chunky necklaces and a few bracelets. I'm a bit of a hippy at heart, so I like my clothes to be relaxed, but stylish and feminine. I go for neutral colours usually, but add a splash of bright colour with my scarf when I feel in a colourful mood! I wear my scarf layered and loose at the front...I like it to have some movement, and I love to accessorise with pretty pins.

6) Who is your role model, and why?

In terms of style and attitude, I love the singer/songwriter Florence Welch. She has an amazing confidence and presence. I love her vintage style.
In terms of everything else, I have to say my parents are my role models. When you learn about Islam, you start to realise that people you know are living by the morals and principles of Islam, without even knowing it. Although we don't share the same religion, I look to my parents as guides to the way I should be living my life.

7) What are your hijab treasures?

A treasure that hijab brought to me is a feeling of femininity, respect, and pride. I used to think it was liberating to be able to wear whatever I wanted. Women have the right to dress as they please, I thought. After wearing hijab, I realize that it's being covered that's liberating. Who wants to be judged for the length of her skirt, or cut of her top, or size of her waist? The hijab made ME a treasure...something precious. I love the feeling that I remain covered infront of everyone, and save myself for a select valuable few people in my life. I feel like a million dollars! Islam really treats the woman as a diamond...and that's exactly how I feel.

Friday, 19 February 2010

Tech Chic Summer - Shine ON!!

Be prepared for a bright summer!

The Tech Chic look I put together for this summer is my interpretation of what summer chic should be. Don't be afraid to buy a really bright dress, just make sure that you team it with the correct accessories to neutralize the colors. Bring on sophisticated accessories to lift and complete your look ... and shine on this summer!!

Note: When choosing pants to be worn underneath a long dress/top, make sure that the pants do not have ties, buttons and pockets at the front that will bulge through your top. The slacks in this look have only a zipper and subtle detail that will not create extras on your belly. Ideally, your slacks should have their zip invisible on the side, that way your stomach will stay flat under the layers of clothing. At LAKI, all of our trousers are made this way - flat band in front with an invisible side zipper. Perfect to be worn under a gorgeous summer look!

Sunday, 31 January 2010

What are your clothes saying about you?

Dear friends of LAKI,

Let's start with the essentials of self expression: Personal Style!

Personal expression through fashion style is a joyous and natural way off communicating yourself to the world. It is the most simple way of putting your signature out there, and telling people all about you. No matter how much we deny it, the fact remains that our personal style is the ultimate statement telling others what we are all about. It is therefore extremely important to decide what you want to tell others about you, and start styling yourself from there!

This is where Hijab comes in for the Muslim Woman. Ultimately, we want to please Allah by adopting the dress code that Allah bestowed upon us as guardian-as of earth. Therefore, your clothes should be fashionably modest and should say: "I am a Muslimah!" Further styling decisions will be based on categories and details you add to this statement. For example, my statement is "I am a Muslimah! I am on earth to witness the magic of love and learn about Allah's creations. I want to build a beautiful family and make beautiful clothes inspired by Allah artistry in color." I hope that my personal style expresses that...

It is essential to determine what you want to tell people about yourself. Start with writing your personal statement down... and with further posts we will discuss how to make yourself shine through! Please do share with us your statement of personal style...

In comical demonstration off the impact of personal style, above is an image created by a syrian caricaturist about the hijab styles found on the syrian street. This image is posted here merely for demonstration. I do not agree with the cannotations behind the stereotyping that he has done - but I do find it very funny! Let's ensure that your hijab (or no hijab) is sending out the right signals!

The LAKI Blog is now live!

Welcome to the official LAKI Blog!

LAKI... What does that mean? In Arabic, it means "for you, lady". LAKI is a fashion brand designed by Asma Alami, who creates exclusive limited edition pret a porter designs of apparel, scarves, bags and accessories for the fashionable muslim woman. Head-to-toe outfits are made especially suited for the needs of stylish hijabis.

What is LAKI about? .. it is all about "Spirituality in style". Inspiration is drawn from the life of the urban bedouin, a traveling soul living and working in a modern city. Exclusive prints, rich fabrics, fashion details and fine cuts are hallmarks of LAKI collections, which are now sold in its “industrial chic” style boutique in Sharjah. Our garments are made with utmost care and attention to detail, and are Made in the U.A.E.

What is the role of this blog? This blog is your guide to the art of personal expression through fashion style. It will bring you information on latest trends, must-have's, styling staples and top tips in creating a look that makes you feel great. Of course, it will also bring you all the latest news from LAKI and latest top buys! Stay tuned, because if you don't you'll be missing out.

Welcome to the LAKI blog and we invite you to join the world of LAKI.

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