But hey, you guys know me by now.
I err, disappear for a while, and then suddenly WHAM! A mass of posts at once 🙂
This is my favourite silk shirt. I love the colour. It works well casual or formal.
There comes a time.
When a girl’s wardrobe has to …grow up.
I went to visit my aunts house. And I was shocked to realise I was dressed in a similar style to my 12 year old niece!
Skinny jeans, long top, converse trainers.
I don’t know if SHE had begun imitating my dress sense.
Or if I have just gotten to that stage where I am dressing…err…inappropriately for my age?
Am I still dressing like a scruffy student?
In any case.
I went shopping. And I unconsciously started veering towards blazers, heels, and fancy bags.
Well, so there we have it. I am updating my wardrobe.
I just hope I don’t end up looking… OLD! *shudder*
(Like one of my friends who is 27 but dresses like she is 37!..eh eh!)
ex oh ex oh
When did our self worth become so tied up with Hollywood dreams?
I have two gorgeous, beautiful friends. They keep telling me how they feel fat, flabby, ugly and unworthy.
They are anything but.
How do confident, young, gorgeous, professional women get reduced to pinching the fat on their tummies, and counting spots?
One of them wants a chemical peel.
The other is on a weight loss regime which makes her feel guilty for every calorie that passes down her starved gullet.
Look, I am no Pocahontas either.
However, somehow, I have always just accepted my body as is. Imperfect as it is. I have just …accepted it.
My thicke thighs – accepted.
My cellulite – accepted.
My flabby arms – love em.
My spots – meh.
As I have grown, I have even grown to not only accept every aspect of my body ..but also to actually find a way to LOVE it!
My flabby arms? They jiggle, and they are great 🙂 I honestly love them. They remind me of someone who once loved them too.
My thicke thighs and chunky legs that I thought were unattractive – someone else convinced me they were SEXY. And now, I believe it too.
My spots – they are like freckles. Just part of my skin. Part of me.
Its just that…our bodies are what they are. Allah made us so.
Instead of trying to fit into an ideal Made In Holywood, try to wear your own skin.
…..that’s how I felt about 3 months ago.
Now, after spending all this time with my neurotic fat-hating friends…I have started obsessing too!
I am basically writing this post to remind me that I actually DID like myself as me.
Because I have lately started dreaming of long, glossy, hollywood hair. Weaves I know, yes. But the dreams continue 😦
I have begun taking close-ups of the dark circles under my eyes and inwardly agonising that I am beginning to grow old
What a bag of contradictions ey?
I needed to write this post to remind us all. That sometimes the Holywood brainwashing does a good job at making us feel lousy about ourselves.
All that airbrushing, make up artists, and weaves.
None of it is real.
But it sure does look pretty….
Now everyone. Let’s do this together.
Repeat after me.
I. Am. Beautiful. Just. As. I . Am.
I. AM. BEAUTIFUL. JUST. AS. I. AM!
One more time for those at the back!
Have a Beautiful weekend my lovelies 🙂
When you realise what are your own.
And what are others.
I’m pulling out of the rats race.
I just don’t want to be a rat.
And I don’t want to race.
I want to be successful on my own terms.
Not what my mother or my peers deem as successful.
I am done.
We are a generation of women who have something to prove.
Our mothers, did not get to achieve their greatest dreams.
They neared the glass ceiling, but did not break it.
And so, on our shoulders do their expectations lie.
We need to be educated, well bred, respectable young ladies…. who can do it all.
Motherhood, career, success AND riches.
Yet, the glass ceiling has already BEEN shattered.
Albeit a little delayed in Kenya…but…
I do KNOW I can shatter any ceiling I want.
I just…don’t feel the need to.
Part of growing up is separating parental expectations, from your own expectations of yourself.
I don’t need to prove myself.
But I don’t have to.
Basically, all this spiel and over justification, is me trying to say: Its okay not to want it all.
I love random hijabs. This hijab I like because the pattern (close up) looks like ice cream cones.
The trousers were a bargain from Gap. They were in the Christmas sale for 15 pounds. Down from 45 pounds. Bargain, yes? 😛
They were long, so I had to hem them…and I HATE hemming!
But I recently discovered ‘Magic Hemming Tape’, which has now given me the licence to shop in the Sales section..without worrying about looking for Petite sizes!
Previously, I only found petite trousers SOMETIMES in Gap, River Island, Dorothy Perkins and Next. The key word being SOMETIMES. LOL. Usually the best/most fashionable trousers are only available in ‘Long’. Grr.
Most of us are SHORT dammit! Why don’t they provide for us?
Besides, Im not THAT short. (5’1 isn’t thaaat short. Honest!)
My taller friend has a problem in that she is too tall for ‘short’ trousers. And too short for ‘tall’ trousers. She falls somewhere in between. Again, the magic hemming tape came to the rescue.
You basically just iron it on.
And if you hate sewing (like me) or, you’re too busy (like me) …this will be a time saver.
Costs like 2 pounds from Tesco. Look in the sewing section (in the beauty aisles)
Aaaanyway, here’s the outfit.
Again, was rushing out the door to work. So don’t be too harsh 😛 I promise I shall get better at self-taken pics. *Pause* *Insert self-deprecating humour* :p
(Hijab: HnM 10 pounds, TShirt: Zara 12 pounds, Cardigan: HnM 9 pounds, Trousers: Gap 15 pounds, Leopard print flats, not pictured, 15 pounds Claires)
So this is my ‘Bargain Of The Week’
Its a beautiful silk dress from Banana Republic. Originally 98 pounds. I got it for the bargain price of….*drum roll* 13 pounds.
PS: Please ignore the grainy pics. I was walking out the door to go to work.
Since third year of medical school, I have been wearing formal clothes.
I own more formal clothes than I do casual.
Hence a ‘work wear’ piece is ….a good place to start.
So. I thought it would help to start with a few tips.
Long cardigans, short cardigans,wooly cardigans. They are your best friends.
The top you love in River Island isn’t long sleeved? The answer: Cardigan.
The gorgeous formal shirt from United Colours Of Benneton is too fitted? Answer: Cardigan.
The trousers you want to wear are a little too tight around the bottom? Answer: Cardigan! (a long one)
I have a huge range of cardies. Long ones, leopard print ones, polka dots, floral prints. HnM is clearly the best place to get cardies for good value. Usually they go for around 10-15 pounds ish.
When it gets hot? Switch to the ones in a jersey material. They are harder to find. And only come out in summer time. My advice: stock up. Lots and lots of different colours.
2. A good trouser fit
There is nothing worse than a pair of trousers that don’t fit well. As a hijabi, you really don’t want them too tight. You also don’t want them so big you look like you’re drowning in them. I NEVER buy trousers without trying them on first. Different styles suit different body shapes. Try on trousers in different stores, try new styles. You might be surprised at what suits you!
I am short, petite, and pear shaped (read, big ass! lol) And I was super surprised when peg leg trousers looked good on me. Granted I only tried the trousers on in the first place because they were on sale…. lol. But they worked for me. Loose. Comfortable. Tailored. Stylish.
3. The matching issue
Okay. Your hijab doesn’t always have to match perfectly. Nor do your shoes, cardigan or bag. Sometimes, try NOT matching. A grey pair of pants, go with a blue cardigan.
A green hijab, goes with a brown pair of flats.
Mix and match items in your wardrobe and have fun with them.
Work shoes. Well it depends what kind of work you do. I am on the go ALL the time. So I prefer flats. I CANNOT wear heels to work. I wish I could. There is just something about wearing heels. You walk different, feel different. It just gives you that extra edge of confidence.
If you can’t wear heels, or like me you run around a lot at work, try wedges.
They’re great. You get the added height, without the bunions :p
Okay. So most work-wear skirts or dresses tend to be short. Or tight. Or short and tight.
Now, I have said before I am not an overly strict hijabi…
So, I make do.
I wear really, really dark, thick tights.
Some of you, might frown on this idea…fair enough. But it works for me.
If it doesn’t work for you..I would definitely go with long skirts. Yes, they are harder to come by in UK shops. But be on the look out…and you will be surprised. Summer is usually the best time to get long flowy skirts…Get a few in different colours and stagger your wearing of them.
6. Have Fun
Have fun with colours. With combinations of outfits. With shoes.
When I look good, I automatically make myself feel better, and I tend to have a better day at work.
The compliments help also :p
Plus, I like that I change peoples perceptions of Hijabis.
Most people tell me I look really good for a Hijabi. Some may take that as an insult, or a reflection on their…need to look more austere (more ‘Hijabi’) I just take it as a compliment.
Stay tuned for my next post: My first Work Wear Outfit. 🙂
So I’m sitting at a coffee shop at an airport terminal. Blogging.
I’m not doing it on my phone. Nah, I’m not that fancy yet. I’m just lugging my massive Toshiba laptop around.
It feels huge.
Someone be kind and give me a Macbook? Yes? No? Sigh. Ok.
Well, I can’t help but feel I’m doing my dirty business in public.
I dunno what it is.
Maybe its the huge screen, and the crowded coffee shop. Makes me feel people are reading over my shoulder.
So I can’t even tell you guys about the She-male sitting behind me with some killer heels on.
I love people watching at airports.
You can tell a lot about people by how they travel.
Me, I’m the ‘bubbling idiot’
I drop my phone. Leave my passport at the check in desk, forget the keys to the padlocked bags etc etc etc. I am the one you see sprinting down long corridors trying to make it before the gate closes.
Yep. I am ‘DisorganisedTraveller’
And I burn with envy.
My gall bladder positively has an orgasm when I see Mr. ‘CoolAndColected’
You know the one. The man in designer chinos, who looks like he has stepped out of GQ ad. His coiff is in place. His designer man-bag dangles from his hand. He speaks multiple languages. His shoes …sigh. His shoes. ( I have a thing for a man with good taste in shoes)
Mr. ‘CoolAndColected’ I see you. I want to be you. I’d settle for marrying you though. Umm, what would you say if I engineered a meet-up. By ‘meet-up’ I mean accidentally dropping the contents of my handbag at your feet after having bumped into the rack of trolleys.
Oh hush! I didn’t say it would be totally engineered. Or romantic. Or elegant.
At least he looked at me though. Or was it through me?
Well, since we are on opposite ends of the evolutionary scale, re: the Traveller Sub-Species. I can give up that dream.
Mr. ‘CoolAndColected’ is more likely to want Miss ‘I’mTooHotTooTrot’
She has her Louis Vouitton carry-on. Her killer heels. A slash of red lipstick. And a chihuahua.
Yes, she is elegance, and opulence and class personified. She breezes through check-in. First Class of course.
This creature, is difficult to spot.
She doesn’t hang about airports much.
She gets there just in time. Checks-in. And voila, she is whisked into a first class lounge. Within minutes, hey Presto! She has arrived at her destination.
If you spot her. Please tell her I’m sorry I poured coffee over her fancy coat. Umm, it was an unfortunate combination of three bags to push, and my attempt at wearing heels while travelling.
If laser eyes were for real. I’d be a pile of smoking ash right now.
Which other Traveller Species do you know?
I would harp on, but alas, I have a plane to catch.
*Starts mad dash*
15 minutes to last call.
Now from this post here, you will have learnt that I was recently in Manchester. After being over-fed, well watered, and thoroughly all-shopped out, I find myself contemplating when my next visit there is going to be. Why, you might ask? Well, read on peoples.
The beauty of Manchester for me, was the muslim community. I LOVED the fact that we had used our pockets to influence the number of outlets serving halal food. Walking into a restaurant, sandwich shop or fish and chips stand, and asking if the meat is halal is NOT met with confused giggles, nervous glances at the security guard, or hard, angry stares.
At Burristo (a cute, little burrito place), the waitress kindly informed me that the chicken was halal, but the way in which it was made was not. It was cooked together with the non-halal steak. WOW! She not only knew what halal was, she had gone a step further. Jeez!! I need to move to Manchester.
The city centre had a prayer place too. So you did not have to forfeit you’re salah for shopping. There was a myriad of stands selling hijabs dotted all over the high street. Overall, it just oozed muslim-friendliness. But not in an overt, over the top way. In a its-a-multicultural-place-so-this-is-perfectly-normal way. I L-O-V-E-D it!
In Cardiff where I live, muslims form a LARGE chunk of the population. But unless you go hunting for them in the ghettos (Riverside, Grangetown etc), you won’t see us. Not in the universities, nor the hospitals, nor the high street. It’s like we are in hiding. Ashamed of our religion. Not only ashamed to be seen practicing our religion. Ashamed to be seen. Period.
Are there any other towns/cities where you have seen the same?
Can we please stand up and make our presence felt people?!! We are part of the community. We must get out of the shadows, stand proud, and practice Islam freely and fiercely. No excuses..