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Today hijab has many significances for different people across the world. Speaking of women who performs Islam and chosen to wear the Hijab, it allows them to preserve their modesty, morals and freedom of choice. Hijab is a headscarf worn by Muslims Women. The scarf itself comes in countless colors and styles. The most frequently worn leaves the head and the neck covered but leaves the face clear. In The Metro Metropolitan Museum of Art exhibition, the religious theme trend has proven that fashion has no limitations.
When the word “Fashion” being said, instantly forms a scenario of runways, models, expensive clothes and superficial attitudes. Hijab is the most misunderstood symbols of Muslim women. Hijab for some means pairing a headscarf with Western style clothes.
For others it means wearing loose robes as well. Nevertheless, others have added a niqab or face veil to their ensembles (why the hijab, 2018). Which brings us to the question what does Islamic dress entails? According to Quran and hadith verified sayings of the Prophet Muhammad, a woman’s body should be covered to an extreme only her face, hands and feet are exposed.
However, the clothing must be loose enough so that the shape of a woman’s body is not visible. It’s a reminder that Islam clarifies Muslims that the concept of modest dress doesn’t just mean covering the body, but it also entails behaviors, manners, and public appearance (Bacha,2018).
Heavenly body exhibition explores how the Catholic imagination has shaped the creativity of designers and how it is delivered through their narrative impulses.
Several designers were featured in Heavenly Bodies and their exhibitions were portrayed on religious subject matter through the lens of fine art and filmic references. An example from The Priest’s Wife: Dolce & Gabbana | The Priest’s Wife Laneri (2018) mentioned “The Catholic Church wasn’t always so glamorous. In the early days, those who followed the teachings of Jesus, wore drab gray robes to align themselves with the poor. Women in particular were instructed to forsake cosmetics, elaborate hairstyles and jewelry. Such asceticism repelled unwanted sexual attention and expressed their interest in pleasing God more so than humans.”
However religious wear has played tremendous negative impact for muslims after the 911 terror attack. Muslim women were being labeled as a terrorist and treated poorly due to their traditional appearance. The perception of Islam has changed more towards a terrorist matter rather than what its known for, religion of peace. It’s injustice for the islamic communities when a woman is wearing the similar church attire to prevent unwanted sexual attention and being discriminated, attentively oppressed. In the 1960s television series The Flying Nun, Charles de Gaulle was informed that the Sisters of Charity were changing their headdress to a soft veil (allegedly designed by Christian Dior). The veil was a resemblance of the modern way of how hijab is being worn today.
Halima Aden, a Somali American model was the first hijab wearing high fashion model to appear on the runways. Along with IMG Models, the first to appear the cover of an American beauty magazine. She also gained her recognition in the Miss Minnesota USA competition. Runway shows involving Max Mara, Alberta Ferretti, and Yeezy Season 5, and she appeared in Nike’s ad campaign wearing a sports hijab. Though hijabi models weren’t often cast, during Fall 2018 runways models appeared wearing hijab.
“It was yet another instance of erasure in the fashion industry, as the majority of the models wearing hijab were not themselves muslim” (Muslim Models Breaking Barriers in the Fashion Industry, 2018). More than just sophisticated headwear, hijab holds religious and cultural significance for muslim women. Many are bullied, discriminated against and attacked for wearing it (Bacha, 2018). Over the years There is a huge movement towards traditionalism in the world today. Best belief that fashion trends will reflect that. Muslim cultures have been familiarized in the fashion industry and its slowly breaking stereotypes.
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