Monday, 30 September 2013

Look Post | East West Designs

Hello to my dear readers! I have missed you guys! I have missed blogging! Unfortunately with us living in South Africa, with our Internet speeds being what it is, and the amount we pay for data, I run out of data on a regular basis, ever since I have started blogging. How I yearn for faster lines and cheaper data rates. The most wonderful thing happened however while I was cut off from the world - data less. I ended up winning the Covered Bliss Swim suit giveaway! How totally awesome is that! I have the worst luck with competitions and truly never really expected to win. Imagine my complete delight when one of my readers Sara Sheikh, I believe from Covered Bliss sent me a message informing me of my win. It seems the winner was announced while I was offline, so to speak. I am still so stunned! I'm really looking forward to receiving the swim suit, because since I have started wearing Hijab swimming has been a no go area. They are super stylish too! What a plus!

So, for another cool announcement! The pants I am wearing in this look post is from East West Designs. A local South African brand by Aneesah Harris. She has the most beautiful abaya's, scarves and other items including some very needed staples for the hijabi and non-hijabi. They are very reasonably priced and the clothing items are designed and made locally. The abaya's and scarves are imported from Dubai, so you can only just imagine how beautiful they are.

East West Designs will be having their first fashion show next Sunday, 6th October at Highgrove coffee shop from 3pm till 5pm. I, unfortunately can't make this event, however much I'd like to go. Be sure to have a look, it's a must for all you fashionistas! Entry is free so why not?

Now, back to the look post. This my interpretation of the monochrome trend. I love this trend and wish to try and monochrome it up more often. I do however feel that it has to have a splash of colour. I have added that with my hijab and my shoes. You can either have all items in monochrome and add some awesome statement earrings or a necklace for that splash.

Until the next post! Keep it you and keep it modest!

memrsme
fatimakw









Scarf Styling: Fatimakw (memrsme)
Shoes: HQ shoes
Blazer: Mr Price
Accessories: Rebel Funk

Wednesday, 18 September 2013

Look Post | Floral Shirt

Hey lovelies! This look post had to take a back seat to the Lisa Vogl interview, which you can read here. This was the Sunday previous when the weather was sweet. Mind you, I will be missing winter when the new season finally decides to stay. So here is the quick look post as requested by a South African living abroad. By the way I am so humbled by those few who follow the blog. Thank you so much! It truly makes doing all this so worthwhile and rewarding. It shows that with time In Sha Allah it's very possible to achieve what I want to out of this blog, though, with Allah's will! However, if I manage to positively affect at least one person I will have achieved what I set out to do!

So here is the look post, for this look, I could be considered the poster hijabi for Mr Price, (**giggle**) as most of my items are from there. The shirt has a longer back but was not long enough so I'm paired it with my Woolworths staple vest and old waistcoat jersey. I love the jeans with its ripped look and mauve colour turn ups but needed to wear a pair of tights underneath for added security. I also completely forgot to put on the heels intended for this look as I was walking around the house in flats. It didn't look too bad though, so, no big deal. Until the next post, Keep it you and keep it modest!

memrsme
Fatimakw




Pumps: Mr Price
Jeans: Mr Price
Floral Shirt: Mr Price
Turban Styling Fatimakw (memrsme)
Waistcoat Jersey: (old)
Accessories: Rebel Funk
(All Rebel Funk accessories are available from me)

Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Interview | Lisa Vogl-Hamid




Hi Everyone. This is by far the most exciting post that I have the infinite pleasure to bring to you. I had recently contacted Lisa Vogl - Hamid from Lisa Vogl Photography through facebook and literally jumped up and down, clapped my hands and ‘eeked’, when she responded leaving me with her email address.

For those of you who don’t know who she is, Lisa Vogl-Hamid is an American revert, hijabi and a brilliant photographer. She is one of the women that has inspired me along my hijab journey at the time when I searched for hijabi’s around the world. And, with her being a photographer, she further piqued my interest. I have been following her work ever since and thought that if she has inspired me so tremendously how wonderful would it be to inspire so many others through my blog.

After my initial email requesting an interview, we emailed each other to arrange a video chat. Lisa was very courteous and helpful. She agreed to do the interview as her way of spreading the Deen and I remain so humbled that she extended herself to little old me!

Unfortunately, with the time difference being 6+ hours, it took me a bit longer than expected to get the interview out, but finally, here it is.

1.           Salaam Lisa, Could you tell us a bit about yourself for those of us that don’t know?

I am an international wedding and fashion photographer. I have a degree in photography from Daytona State University and a B.A in Marketing and Cultural studies from Chatham University. I grew up in Michigan USA to Christian and catholic family. I’m 1 of six children.

2.           Six, children that must have been something growing up! But, tell us a bit about your upbringing and whether it was fairly religious or not?

My upbringing was not religious at all. My mother has always believed in God or she likes to say a “higher being” but she tends to stay away from organized religion as she thinks it divides people and causes hatred between one another. I think this is due to her upbringing. She came from a strict conservative Baptist family that I believe was so strict that it pushed her away from religion. My father came from a devout catholic family. He goes to church every now and then and holds pride in his catholic identity but never forced it on any of his children. He would tell me that religion is personal and believes your relationship with God and journey in religion develops over time. I however always had a need for religion. Neither one of my parents influenced me it was something with in me that had a need to get close to God through religion. As a teenager I was quite involved in the Christian church. I’d attend church on Sunday, go to church camps and Good news on Monday (and church group that does bible study)

3.           Ok, What then drove you to Islam?

In one word I’d have to say Christianity led me to Islam. I had such a passion for Jesus’ message so I followed what he really taught- To believe in One God. 

When I was 19 years old I decided to take a year off of college. I did an internship at Walt Disney World the first half of the year. I also took on a 2nd job at night. I saved all my money and decided to use that money for travel. I’ve always been a very adventuress and free spirit type of a girl I would and still do things that surprises my mom. I called her up and told her I was going to travel through Europe and through a friends connection move to Morocco for a short time. It was a trip that changed my life. I wanted to go to experience a different culture but it was Islam that was left in my heart when I left that beautiful country. My experience there was much different than a normal traveler. I lived with a native Moroccan family in about 300 sq feet with a family of 4. We had no hot water and no toilet. Everything that was a basic necessity to me became a luxury overnight. It changes you and makes you appreciate the basic things you have in life. However, that clearly was not related to Islam. But what I loved about my experience is the mother (who was also a widow) had so little in life compared to me and many of my American friends yet she was so devoted to her religion. It was very beautiful to see. As some one who loves and was always curious of those who were “different” than me I wanted to live just like they did. So I asked to wear the Abaya and Hijab to fit in and to show respect. I lived with them for 3 months and then came home.

Upon return I finished college and went about my life. A few years later I realized I wanted to go to photography school as I knew I needed to be in a creative field. A few months in to school we were given an assignment to do a two-minute documentary on whatever subject we wanted. I decided to do it on the Hijab. I never really asked why women wear it, which was surprising considering I wore it myself for 3 months. I just looked at it as more of a cultural attire rather than religious. So to complete the documentary I called upon my really good friend Nadine (who runs Nadoona) to interview. I asked very basic questions, as I didn’t know much. Her answers are what inspired me to research about Islam. What I didn’t know was that the bible in fact orders women to wear the Hijab (Corinthians chapter 11 verse 6). My interest was sparked and I was curious to learn more. I then researched for about 6 months before I decided to take my Shahada on July 29th 2011. When you grow up in a culture or religion you don’t question why your parents live a certain way or why certain things are done. You just accept it as normal but when your faced with tough questions as I was it causes you to think outside the box and realize that the religion that I held so near and dear to my heart was not God’s true religion. The thing is that there is a misconception of todays Muslims as they think that Christians believe in 3 God’s. They don’t. I was a Christian for over 20 years and never thought of the trinity as 3 Gods because God can be in more places and different form at once. Where I was struck and realized that Christianity had made an error was that they believe the only way to heaven is by “accepting Jesus Christ as your lord and a savior.” And Jesus died for my sins. That’s what I had a problem with. Why would God who is the most powerful who created me not also be able to forgive me? I then questioned why children would go to Hell if Christianity was never brought to them. These were questions that Islam answered for me. I then came to know that the bible had been changed many times as the Quran and scientifically proven has not changed since it was written. And most of what Christianity was based off of was the Trinity, which was created by a man named Paul who had never even met Jesus.

So after my research it was clear to me that Islam was the final religion of God and the one I was supposed to follow. When I took my Shahada it was the best decision I’ve ever made Alhamduiliah.

4.           Masha Allah! How long after embracing Islam did you decide to wear Hijab?

This may shock most but I actually put it on several months before I converted. However, I didn’t have it on full time due to my situation. I was still in photography school when I converted. At night I was a server (waitress) to support myself. So during the day I would wear it and when I went to work at night I took it off. I felt a constant struggle as it felt like I was living a double life. It became very stressful for me as I felt I was sinning. However, I wasn’t married nor were my parents supporting me. As time went on it became more of a challenge to me. At fajr prayer I’d make Dua that God bring me a husband to support me so I then could wear the hijab full time or to help my photography flourish so I could quite my job and support myself. Alhmaduiliah God brought me both! I have an amazing husband now who supports me and I’m now able to wear my hijab full time. Although I have been pulling back on my photography quite a bit for the sake of my family the sacrifice is very worth it.

5.           So, how has wearing the hijab made you feel?

The first few days of wearing it was very difficult for me. Because as a born muslim you may not need to explain yourself as much for someone who is Caucasian and came from a Christian family people will naturally be more curious. So I was quite nervous at first. However, as my Deen became stronger you realize that when people ask why that’s not offensive no matter how silly or ridiculous their questions are, because that’s a chance to give Da’wah. That’s exactly what led me to learn about Islam and convert myself. Now I’m very confident with my hijab. I often wear a full abaya as well. The hijab in fact makes me more confident because I can show the world that I’m muslim where as a man may not have the blessing that we do. I’m proud of my religion and I won’t hide it.

6.           What were the challenges that you faced in wearing hijab in a Western Society?

I’ve only had a small amount of challenges come my way. There were just a few times when I had other women be rude to me and say racist comments. But I realize their comments are from ignorance and fear. Which is why I take it upon myself to try to spread what Islam is as much as possible. I think Muslims tend to think everyone will judge us and so we decide not to put the scarf on but I disagree. I believe most people are good by nature and accept us. It’s the few that make the rest look bad. Just as we expect them to not judge us, I don’t want to do the same and assume that they are thinking of me poorly because of the way I dress. And if they do who cares anyway! I have my hijab on for Allah SWT and am doing the right thing.

7.           That’s so true! I know from yazthespaz’s post of Aquila Style about your story, your mom felt like she lost you once you started wearing hijab can you tell us a bit more about this and how she has since come around if at all?

My mom has come around Alhamduilialh. She has accepted that I’m muslim and that I have a muslim husband and dress differently than her. When I converted she didn’t care but she didn’t want me to wear the hijab because now it shows that I’m muslim. However, I’m a very strong minded person when I believe I’m doing the right thing. I went against my mother and wore it anyways. When a man converts you don’t see any physical changes but when a women converts and puts on the hijab she obviously looks different. So with that said, I know that my mother would go through her fair share of questions and although that’s not fair to her I had to wear it regardless. There are times where she just may not understand certain things and tends to fight them a little but all things come with time and I just have to show patience.

8.           So, in most western societies Hijab is seen as oppressive toward women, what can you say against this common thought and what in your opinion are the advantages of wearing the Hijab?

There are many things that I love about western society. The democracy and rights granted towards minorities/women and the general open mindedness of most but where we got it wrong is that western society oppresses women in their own way. They have turned the woman’s’ body in to a sexual object and use it as a commodity. The beauty business is a multi-billion dollar business selling women’s bodies. That is the biggest form of oppression that I have ever witnessed. Studies show that girls as young as 4 or 5 begin to have body issues and are unhappy with the way they look. This is because they see images of half naked women everywhere they go. And as a photographer I know first hand what you can do in photoshop and much of what we see isn’t even real. So we see images of women that no one can obtain. Not even the model in the images themselves. As we cover we protect ourselves from this form of oppression and people see us for who we are and not as an object or something that is a commodity.

9.           How has your dress sense evolved since wearing hijab and how would you describe your fashion sense?

 My level of modesty has improved over time. This is why it hurts me to see other women make PUBLICILY rude comments on social media or in other forms about other women’s hijab. I didn’t begin my hijab with a full abaya. It takes time and it has to come from within. We’ll in fact push women away from correctly covering with judgments rather than help them to move towards the right path. In fact, as I mentioned earlier I only wore it half the time to begin with as my life changed and as I became stronger in my belief in the hijab it went on full time. But with that said, I just like to be stylish. I cover but in a modern way. My style might be considered posh muslimah style.

10.       Lol, I like that “Posh Muslimah style”, What type of hijab style is your everyday and what is your favorite?

I actually love wearing turtle necks and wearing it turban style. I also love to wear it pashmina style.

11.       Who and What inspires you in terms of hijab and fashion?

My good friend yaz of course! Its funny how we met. We actually met through a mutual friend Nadine who I interviewed about Islam. I didn’t know of yaz at the time 2 years ago but I started watching her youtube videos and started learning different hijab styles from her videos. Now we’re great friends!

12.       I also love watching Yaz’s videos! What advice can you give to muslim women who are afraid or feel that they are not yet ready to wear hijab?

I would pose a question back to them and ask why? Why are you afraid? Of what others will think? Of not looking beautiful? Of being judged? Why sacrifice your religion for such minor reasons. The hijab raises your status as a woman. Imagine the reward for spreading Islam and that’s exactly what the hijab does as it’s a form of Da’wah. Be proud of who you are and be strong in your beliefs and you’ll feel even more confident because you’re staying true to who you are.

I am total in awe of this woman. Many of us struggle with the basics that our religion requires us to do. We see this happen so many times, but, how profound is it that someone who was not even born into Islam can see our beautiful religion this clearly. May we all be able to see it this way, In Sha Allah! One of the most important things that I have personally taken from Lisa’s interview is that when we cover, we protect ourselves and people can see us for who we really are, we can therefore be ourselves and there is no stopping us from accomplishing whatever we wish. Clearly, we can cover our hair, be stylish, still be true to ourselves, and at the same time be spreading Deen and gaining reward. Just how beautiful is that?

Tuesday, 10 September 2013

Turban Styling Street Style with Make Up by Razana Omar


Hey peeps! I am extremely excited to bring to you the first in a series of shoots that Razana Omar and I have teamed up to bring to the memrsme blog. There are some very exciting developments underway for the memrsme blog and this collaboration is indeed one of them.

Razana and I met some time ago after she saw the blog and thought it would be a good idea to bring our interests together for the readers. It was then that the idea of having a street style Turban shoot inspired by these two beautiful hijabi's Dina Tokio and Nuralailalov, was born. This is the first in the series of ideas born that day, with Bridal and Summery Hijab, and make-up to be coming soon.

I have said before that turban was a way for me to ease into the Hijab scene, so to speak, and I'm quite certain that this may ring true for some of you as well.  With that being said, the idea for this shoot was to present cool and funky scarf styles, to appeal to a wider or shall I say younger audience. With this, we hope to inspire more women to start covering their hair and to realise that by doing so you can still be, if not more beautiful. 

It was then, this past Sunday that Razana and I came together for this shoot. With the weather being not the ideal for an outdoor shoot as we had intended, we remained indoors. With Lynne Whitehead as the model Razana had chosen, the location of the shoot became a non-issue. This beauty is not muslim but agreed to do the shoot with us, much to both our delights!

We had limited time for the shoot in which to cram in 4 different looks but Razana skillfully managed to get all 4 looks done in time. Impressive to say the least. For the most part, I sat and watched Razana work her magic on Lynne, though truth be told, Lynne is stunning with and without make-up, after which I would style the scarf. Razana works meticulously and it seems that she is a perfectionist of sorts. I noticed how she huffed and puffed when she was not happy with something that I clearly did not see. In the end the make-up was done amazingly, and after watching her work, I have a newfound respect for make-up Artists. I realise that I know nothing about make-up (yikes!), and luckily Razana has offered to teach me a few things.

These looks, are super cool, and in my opinion can be worn in a street style way with denims or even teamed up with some heels, a fabulous dress and accessories for an evening look. They are quite easy to achieve and if you add a hood or snood to it, will give you a fuller hijab look. If you want to try a look and perhaps don't know how, feel free to email me regarding.

Frontal Sikh Inspired Turban



Side Braided Turban


 Frontal loop Turban

Waterfall Turban

On a serious note however, I have been reading of late, that Hijab seems to be a trend and without a doubt turban as it has been seen on many the celeb and even on the runway.  It seems though that more and more women are realising that you can don the scarf and still be fashionable, therefore trendy. As we know however, trends in the fashion industry are something that wanes like the moon, but in my opinion once you start wearing the scarf and get the feel of how it should and probably will make you feel, I doubt that it will be a passing trend. This "trend" could simply be Allah's way of giving Hidayah to many in one go? What you do you think?

Photography: Sarfaraaz Khan
Make-up: Razana Omar
Scarf styling: memrsme
Photo Editing: memrsme

memrsme
Fatimakw




Wednesday, 4 September 2013

Look Post | Purple and Black

Whats up peeps? This is just a small look post. It's not meant to be anything wow or extravagant in anyway, its just me trying to shoot my own pictures. Since I don't always have someone available to shoot my look posts, I will need to do some practicing in this department.

What I wore here is just my casual oldies, you know, in the house, running around, fetching kids etc. You need to be comfortable but still look fairly decent in case you bump into someone. It's like the old people used to say, "wear good underwear in case you meet up with an accident", or "keep your house clean in case you die on the road". I am by no means famous, so wont really be "spotted" but still feel it nececesay to look decent. Mind you, I often have my days when I just want to throw on track pants and hubby's T, or better yet stay in PJ's all day.  I'm sure we all have those days. So the outfit is old. Really nothing new here, beside my scarf.

So, to me it just proved to be quite something by adding a new scarf to the mix. I absolutely love the material of this scarf, so easy to wrap and turn! I definitely need to do a turban style with this scarf to show you! This scarf was bought on my hunt for scarves for my up and coming turban styling shoot with Razana Omar Hair and Make-Up. It was bought at Sawants, and I absolutely love the way it falls and that its got an ombre effect. The only thing is that it was quite pricey. If I can find something similar for cheaper I will have scored! So, I'll be on the look out for this in the next few days.

I have also been pondering on what to blog about lately. I will be doing a DIY top out of an old scarf soon, inspired by Dina Tokio, (who recently got married. Mabrook Dina!), The Turban styling with Razana Omar and A shoot with East West Designs among other things. If there is any topics you wish me to tackle regarding hijab  turban styling or anything else drop me an email, I will try my best to help. Until next time keep well, keep it you and keep it modest.

memrsme
Fatimakw





Scarf: Sawants
Jewelry: Rebel Funk
Cardigan: Gift
Dress: (old, I think, Fashion Warehouse)
Jeans: Mr Price
Shoes: Mr Price
( All Rebel Funk Items, if available, can be bought from me)

Monday, 2 September 2013

Get Covered Scarf Styling Workshop

Hi Everyone! I have been trying to get this post out for a long while now. FINALLY! As I have mentioned in my Eid post, I had my first look post all ready and then my dearest Mac decided to go off sick. In that post I also wanted to mention and review the Get Covered Impromtu scarf styling workshop. I have since had to rewrite the post and obviously add or remove what was no longer applicable.

I attended the Get Covered scarf styling workshop, during the Ramadaan, not only in preparation for Eid but it also served as a means to which I wanted to grow myself for blogging. It seemed so apt, since I do blog about Hijab coupled with Fashion. I thought it be necessary to learn how others style there scarves and perhaps get some ideas into improving or building on my own styles.

Get Covered is, how I see it, as a family team, that creates scarves and burkahs, that are easy to wear. Their thing is, no pins, no problems. I had never met Aunty Fay (the women that makes and designs the scarves) before and was bubbling with excitement to attend the workshop. It was a small group of 20 women, including myself. Aunty Fay is a very charismatic, charming and truly Capetownian lady! She started the workshop with some jokes which were very natural and forthcoming throughout the hour. Women giggled and fussed their way through the hour, trying replicate what Aunty Fay seemed so skilled at doing.

She managed to show us a few easy ways to twist the burkah that would take minutes and look good into both turban and hijab styles, by simply building on the base. No Pins Needed! She went on to add, after showing us a few ways to style, that we would be done quicker than you can say 'scarf styling' after having to take wudhu at a function while perhaps another may still be pinning her way back into her Hijab style. I honestly giggled internally as this person pinning their way would be me.

I managed to chat to a few of the attendees to find our their thoughts on the workshop. Leilah Maneveld said, " Its good, very different and quite innovative. The only thing is Get Covered should have a swipe facility!" Siham Gallo, said that she didn't realise that it could be so simple and yet look so neat.

Shahida Sedick who attended the workshop with her two daughters, said, "Fantastic! I don't know what else to say. With this you can look modern yet islamic, I will definately come again." Her daughter, Rushda Sedick, who attended the workshop to gain ideas as she is getting married, said that there is so many things you can do using layers and that the workshop was very nice and interesting.

Its a definite must for all hijabi's, I'd say. Be sure to visit her "huiswinkeltjie" as she dubs it, for some great, burkahs and turbans. She even makes up special ones just for you that slip right on and has made some beautiful Hijabi Bridal pieces. Be sure to check out her facebook page or better yet meet her in person.