Muslim women have always worn the burka as a sign of respect for their religion. The Daily Shift’s Orlaith Farrell talks us through the modern burka and how its fashion has changed…
For centuries, the Muslim culture has suppressed the role of women in society. Ultimately, they were forced to cover their faces and bodies, and even their mouths and eyes. Both culture and religion have regarded these women merely as powerless figures.
The burka, among other Muslim garments, is worn by women as a mark of respect to their religion, covering these ladies completely from head to toe. Originally, their clothes would be fully black, further reinforcing the fact that these women bare neither stance nor role in society, bar their sole purpose of raising a family.
Upon my usual trip on Dublin bus, making the trek back to the homeland, I noticed three 20-something Muslim women getting on. They were dressed in their traditional Muslim attire; however, there was something different about these women. Their traditional face scarves were not dull and black, they were the latest scarves from Topshop, River Island and Penneys’ autumn and winter collections. These women had obviously taken their old, dated traditions into this season’s latest trends.
I couldn’t help but feel so empowered by these women. They were taking an old-fashioned tradition and turning into something incredible. Their scarves were detailed with floral, Aztec and monochrome prints. They were embroidered with golden lining, beautiful patterns and bursting with fantastic colours. These modern women have brought their religion into the 21st century.
There is something to be admired about these women. The Muslim culture has often been criticised for their disrespectful attitude towards women. Yet they have seen a new route to their traditions, a fashionable route. I’ll direct you to another example of this; I’m positive most of you guys have experienced the brilliance that is Sex in the City 2. In Abu Dhabi, we see these Muslim women once more, under their Burkas and Muslim dresses, they reveal a fabulous collection of couture outfits. While these women appear to keep the façade of Muslim tradition, they are practicing their other faith, and their love for fashion.