Balancing Fashion & Faith: A Look at Muslim Style Bloggers
By: Taylor Davies

Screen shot 2012-03-09 at 10.59.30 AM
Follow on Bloglovin
Pinterest

If there’s one thing I learned from my second IFB conference, it’s that our community is more ecclectic and diverse than I ever imagined. We have members from all over the world, representing an absolute multitude of races, religions, creeds and cultures. IFB is basically this fabulously chic digital melting pot.

 

Though our vast numbers and widespread characteristics really showed themselves at the conference, I think all these different people can be under-represented in our content. Color me curious, but I just want to know more about all these bloggers who aren’t –  let’s face it – skinny white girls with a camera and a closet. [Editors note: I am perhaps one of these girls, so I get to say that.]

 

In an effort to explore our community and get to know the different niches that make up the style blogging world, IFB is going to feature successful bloggers who represent the best of their demographic. To kick things off, get to know some of the chic Muslim style bloggers of IFB.

 

Asma of  Haute Muslimah, based in the US (Texas)

On balancing her faith and fashion:

“Personally for me, everything must follow Islamic guidelines first. And I find that almost every trend can be worked into a more modest look. I mean, except if the trend is minis- well, even then I supposed you could rock them with pants. For example stripes were huge last spring, and you can wear them on scarves, dresses, tunics, whatever really. I don’t like to limit myself when it comes to fashion.”

On the challenges she faces with her blog:

“The first challenge is taking photos for my blog. It’s really difficult to take photos that not only don’t show my face, but don’t really show the shape of my body too much either. I need the photos to look good, to look stylish, and I still need to maintain my modesty. (Not all Muslim fashion bloggers do this, this is just me personally.) Second, I always try to point out that you can wear something I blog about however you want. If you’re a modest dresser, then work it. If you’re not, then you can still wear the trend or style in a different way.”

 

Hana of Style Covered, based in the UK

On how her religion impacts her day-to-day style…

“I’m a convert to Islam; I didn’t always dress this way.  The main thing is that I feel covered.  By that, I do of course mean literally i.e. wearing a scarf and covering my body, but it’s as much a state of mind.  To know that it is actually possible to feel beautiful without being sexy.  It also comes down to simplicity and shunning the ‘excess’ that comes with fashion.  Most of the time I’m working from home or with girlfriends so I don’t even think about covering up, but going out just means I pick from a different set of clothes, or add a layer or two.”

On the challenges she faces marrying fashion and her faith…

There are always challenges in getting what you look like to be reflective of who you are, and having lived both, I think it’s no more or less difficult having to cover.  It’s just different.  A different aesthetic.  It took a while to get to know myself this way, but it was exciting being able to experiment and having a whole new set of tools to play about with.

On the Muslim style blogging community…

“Being a part of such a small community of bloggers (especially when I first started) you get to know everyone.  We’d do our best to support what everyone else was doing because we know first hand how hard it can be.  But it’s also vibrant and a great network to be a part of.  Different countries all have their own particular style, and it’s wonderful to have such a diverse cross-section of style at your fingertips.”

 

Miss Hijabi of Miss Hijabi, based in Australia

On the Hijab, and what it means…

“The hijab itself, is just the term for the scarf we wear on our heads, but a lot of bloggers will extend the term to include the overall dress of a covered Muslim woman. It is part of our religion to cover our bodies when we dress (for men and women) so many of us see it as a religious duty to abide by. It means different things to different people. A lot of Muslim women wear it, while at the same time a lot don’t for their own reasons and beliefs. For me; it is essentially about modesty. We like to cover as we think it is more respectable as women not to have the majority of our body on display when in public.”

On the Muslim style blogging community and representation in the media…

“Most of the Muslim bloggers I know are from the UK, USA, Middle East, Indonesia, Malaysia, etc. There really aren’t that many Australian Muslim bloggers that I know of. We have a few nationwide, but in my state as far as I know there is only me. 
There are so many Muslim fashion bloggers out there! In TV/magazine type media we are definitely underrepresented (or more likely not represented at all) but we have definitely taken the matter into our own hands when it comes to online media. There is a huge community for us to share ideas and show off our style.”
To see more examples of Muslim style blogs from all over the world, check out Hijab Style, Fashioning Faith and street style blog Hijabs High.

We would love your feedback on this post, and whether you would like to see more like it in the future! Do you feel like any special niches of bloggers should be highlighted on IFB? Let us know!

 

[Images credits: Hijabs High; Haute Muslimah; StyleCovered; Miss Hijabi]

 

Comments

  1. Bella Q says:

    Yes. yes. yes. I love this! I love how you are showcasing the variety of fashion blogs, what blogging does, what it means and how it helps connect. I really appreciate this post- and would LOVE to see more posts like this. REALLY WELL DONE, again, IFB!

    • I am with Bella. I am so happy and proud to see this story on IFB. I love exploring fashion through different religions and cultures. I can’t wait to visit their blogs.

    • Styleosophy says:

      Taylor, Bella Q has an extensive link list of “over 40″ bloggers on her site. I would love to see women over 40, 50 and beyond on IFB.

      I applaud you for writing this article, and have often wondered why more there is not more diversity featured on IFB. I hope this is the start of seeing all types of ethnicities, ages and sizes on your landing pages.

  2. Helene says:

    Taylor, I think you hit the nail on the head “skinny white girls with a camera and a closet” are over-represented on IFB and in the blogosphere in general. Kudos to you ladies at IFB for acknowledging it and taking steps to actually change that. I’d personally like to see more bloggers of color- and not just the ones who fit a European aesthetic- i’d like to see black women who have embraced their natural hair.

    Helene
    Bonvivantandabudget.com

  3. It’s amazing to hear about religion and fashion. It’s not often talked about. Congrats to all the religious style bloggers who stay true to themselves! PS love that blazer with that maxi dress. Perfection!

  4. Amanne says:

    Thank you so much for featuring these ladies! I love this. I am also a Muslim fashion/beauty blogger (although I do not wear hijab). I originally started my blog as a creative outlet but quickly noticed that there was a certain type of “popular” fashion blogger and they all looked the same.

    Much respect to my fellow Muslimahs for holding it down and showing the world that we are actually normal women. JazakAllah Khair.

  5. Catherine says:

    Loved reading about these bloggers (and now visiting their blogs!). I think one of the best things about fashion is how adaptable it is – no matter what your beliefs, you can adapt the latest trends to work for you! I also personally think the headscarf is so gorgeous (and I’ve totally tried to make one out of a scarf once), and I love how it’s incorporated into so many beautiful outfits!

  6. pumpmar says:

    aahhh yeh its misshijabi! just won a giveaway on her page and she is my absolute favourite fashion blogger out there!

  7. Loved this post! I’m not muslim, but I am Jewish, and while I may wear pants/show my shoulders etc, there are many other stylish Jews who don’t. I went to a Jewish school where about half of the girls were more religious yet managed to remain stylish in below-the-knee skirts and modest tops. It was great to get the muslim perspective!

  8. Thank you so much for this article! I’m one of Jehovah’s Witnesses and also have to remain modest in my dress so this was so very encouraging to see. I’m also of another minority in the fashion world: I’m plus-size. This article reaches so many levels of the fashion blogging world and I’m so appreciative.

  9. Samar says:

    As a muslim blogger (though I don’t wear hijab) this is refreshing to see. Thank you IFB for continuing to be informative, socially conscious and forward in all you represent. It’s great to see all of the wonderful feedback this post has gotten from people all backgrounds. Fashion unites :)

  10. MJ says:

    This is such a great feature! These women are beautiful and I can’t wait to visit their blogs!

    I agree that we should explore and highlight those bloggers don’t fit into the mainstream blogging mold. I would definitely like to see a spotlight on African American and Hispanic bloggers (I’m both and don’t see too many except for those who just do beauty blogs.)

  11. Rebecca says:

    Love this!! I am not Muslim, but knew Asma (Haute Muslimah) in College. She is an awesome and fun person, and changed my my perception of Muslims as a whole. She is very friendly and open to everyone and has always been super fashionable!!! She is a great ambassador for fashion, and for her faith. I am really glad to see you featured her here, she deserves it! <3

  12. Such a great post – thank you for showcasing these fantastic fashion bloggers!

  13. Sharon says:

    *applause* I am so delighted with this post. Diversity is such a beautiful thing. Thank you Taylor Davies for such a great post. For wanting to learn more about others and for sharing with everyone.

  14. Sharon says:

    Oopps, I was so delighted with the post I forgot to answer the question. Yes, obviously I enjoyed it. I would like to see more bloggers of different races, ethnics, and backgrounds featured not only in a post but, on the main page and at conferences. Plus, it seems like personal style bloggers are the focus more than any other “fashion” bloggers. I like personal style bloggers but variety is the spice of life and fashion. Hmm, oh and don’t forget the bloggers 35+ (we look good too) and even the guys need some love too.
    Okay done . . .bye.

  15. Style Hybrid says:

    This article made my day. Thank you, Taylor! I’m a Muslim blogger as well. I used to wear hijab and chose to take it off, but I still dress modestly.

    Muslim women are incredibly diverse in their beliefs, and we’re all on our own journeys to balance our own interpretation of faith with our personal style, much like women of other religions.

    Blogging is a great way to do that, and it’s also a great way to combat the stereotypes of Muslim women as monolithic, oppressed victims, so I really appreciate you highlighting these bloggers. I look forward to more articles like this!!

  16. Filiz says:

    Fanbloodytastic!!! It’s great to see some of us muslim bloggers getting some recognition. Great piece and definately will look forward to more stories like this! xx

  17. Iris says:

    I absolutely LOVE this post! I am.. well a white girl with a camera and closet ;] but I have a Muslim boyfriend and it’s just so much fun to see fashion through the eyes of someone from his culture. I love the women’s responses in every single one, I especially liked the first post about how she has to take her pictures. This is a great idea and i love the idea of fashion niches!

    Fabulous post xx

  18. Nooreen says:

    Great post! SO true, great to see that fashion blogging is growing outside of the typical definition and more and more muslim girls are getting involved. Me & a friend have a blog where we try to balance fashion with other issues we face as Muslim girls. I myself do not wear hijab right now, and my friend does, so it’s both of our perspectives http://www.facebook.com/theonlywayishijab

  19. Samar says:

    Miss Hijabi has her definition backwards; many people do use the term “hijab” to refer to the headscarf itself, but the actual word for the scarf is “khimar”.

    “a lot of bloggers will extend the term to include the overall dress of a covered Muslim woman. ”

    - That is not just the opinion of “a lot of bloggers”. That is closer to the actual meaning of hijab – overall covering and modesty. Hijab literally means a curtain or a barrier, so a screen separating two people also technically serves as “hijab”.

    Men also have some obligation to hijab, although different from that of women.

  20. Samar says:

    ^ I didn’t realize there was another Samar a few posts above, I should have included a last name initial to differentiate myself :)

  21. UmmSultana says:

    I loved it, very well done. I do enjoy following all those bloggers as well. As a Hijabi who sometimes features my fashions I relate big time.

    Its nice to get exposure. In the states, Muslims are the second largest religious community and def the fastest growing so there is a growing need to learn how balance religious obligations with dress.

  22. Afeni Stones says:

    Great article! Love the different view points on how Muslimahs are combining fashion with our religious actions. Was thinking about becoming a blogger myself! I can honestly say as being a Muslimah, mother, employee & active in my community I feel very versital in my fashion choices and don’t feel “compromising” in my fashion choices as well as “unique”! Keep these articles coming….

  23. SARAH says:

    I loved this article and getting to see three different persectives. There is so much diversity in fashion and getting to see different styles really inspires me and makes the world seem smaller! :)

    http://sarahriaz.blogspot.com/

  24. Katy says:

    LOVE this post! Thank you so much for featuring these wonderful ladies and showing that fashion bloggers are a diverse group of individuals. I love that these ladies have standards they live by and that is reflected clearly in their blogs and their way of speaking. – Katy

  25. Ana says:

    I love this feature in general, and I love Muslim style (and beauty) bloggers in particular.

    Their point of view is always fresh.

    Since I view all fashion as working the ‘cover’ (some cultures/climates have more to work with or get around, some less), I love seeing how others do it.

  26. Mary says:

    Really interesting post. I would love if you continued writing about different communities we may not be aware of.

    Personally I’d like if someone had a list of great in betweener bloggers. It seems like most fashion bloggers are thin and petite or plus size. Occasionally I come across someone in the middle (like me) but not as often as I’d like to.

    I always need new blogs to follow, lol.

  27. Nurfatiin says:

    Applause to IFB.
    Im a muslim, hijabi blogger as well. When i first started, I wasn’t sure if I would be accepted by the mainstream community. No doubt, i got a lot of views from fellow hijabis. I wanted to see if I can get views from non wearers and non believers.

    I was really excited when i got my first follower from a non believer and she has been an avid follower. From then on, I get awesome support from a diverse group of people.

    Like music, fashion is universal.

    xx
    inmyshawls.blogspot.com

  28. I am a Hijabi Fashion Blogger and I was elated to find this in my email!!! I’m so glad this was covered because I do not feel like we get enough recognition or exposure as other fashion bloggers. I love all of these ladies and follow all of their blogs! Thank you for the support!

  29. Thanks Taylor, the article is excellent!
    I loved reading all the comments as well, you guys are so wonderful and supportive :)

  30. Shaunah says:

    So glad you had a post to cover this, I think diversity in fashion bloggers makes gems in the blogosphere

  31. Maha says:

    I tried at first to write to fashion houses in order to have them take in consideration our case of looking for a longer clothes to cover up, that didn’t work so what I do is I search for long sleeve clothes cause I don’t like wearing several layers + it gets supper hot here if you like you can check out my instagram meemalessa there I post my picks & style for long sleeve fashion

  32. Nice Article…
    Like this post :)

  33. Ana says:

    As a Christian, and a fashion blogger, it makes me so excited to see my muslim sisters getting some attention :)

    I happen to be friends with lots of Saudi and North African girls, and they all have impeccable style. Some wear hijab, some don’t, some have curves, others don’t, yet ALL of them look great and embrace modesty. I LOVE that about them. They have inspired some of my choices in fashion, and made me think a lot about where a woman’s value lies…

    Good job ladies!

  34. kam says:

    gambateee.,in do ne

  35. Lilli says:

    Thank you greatly for this article! I’ve been unsure of how to proceed with a modest fashion blog. (I’m Christian but was raised in a Muslim culture.) This has inspired me!

  36. Sakeena says:

    Loved the article. Enjoyed seeing some of my favorite bloggers :)

Trackbacks for this post

  1. My Sorrelli and 7 Blogs to Peep
  2. Muslim Style Bloggers Get Recognized « Electric Firefly

What do you think?