On May 11, 2013, I had the privilege of being in the company of really great women at the 15th Annual Sisters’ Recognition Luncheon and Fashion Show at the Hilton Hotel in Philadelphia, PA. The event recognizes women within the Islamic community who contribute their time to people in need of their support and they also celebrate in their sisterhood by having a great time catching up with their fellow Muslimahs, praying together, and sharing their love for the modest and beautiful fashion that makes them unique. A little history: I was graciously invited by my sister friend, Aliyah Ali who I was so happy for because this was her first year to serve as the Chair of the UMM (United Muslim Masjid) Fashion Show Committee. I first met Aliyah while she was at work at Joan Shepp. I thought that she was absolutely fierce as she wore her cheetah print hijab and all black. She then sashayed by me and gave a warm hello. We have been associates ever since. So when she invited me to this event to share in her culture, I did not want to miss this opportunity as I was a special invited guest and I so wanted to meet the sisters of Islam. Back to the day of the event. I had already decided what I was going to wear weeks in advance because I wanted to be sure that I represented modesty. See, the Islamic religion is very much like my culture when it comes to dress. The women of the Nantigo Tribe are also about modesty, grace and natural beauty. I wore a long red dress with navy blue roses. Check out the split. I know that the reds are not the same in my jacket but this leather jacket is the bomb and so I wanted to wear it!
So the event started at 11am and my mom, manager, partner and bestie decided that it would be wise to be there at 12pm for the lunch, what a bad idea! The place was packed and there was nowhere for us to sit. I did run into my dear sister, Aliyah Ali, who promised me that she was looking for a seat for us. My mom and I stood at the entrance and admired the wonderfully dressed women walk by in their traditional abayas with a modern edge. Each woman offered a warm smile and a friendly hello, making us feel like we belonged. Finally, seats were found for us. There was no press table so I had to sit amongst the sisters that were at the table. My mom and I were again welcomed to the table warmly and I had a pleasant conversation with sisterKadijah Ali Campbell, who came all the way from New Hampshire to share in the love with her sisters. That was the sister that I hung out with during the fashion show and we had a ball chatting it up. I ran into my girl, Yumnah Najah, the awesome accessory designer who was displaying her goods and was also featuring her jewelry in the fashion show. There were not a lot of vendors but there were a lot of fashionable clothing that came down the runway. The fashion show was awesome as there were designs from many great designers but my favorites of the day were Gwendolyn Dawan and Z Fashions. What I liked so much about the fashion show is that there were a lot of new designers that really did an excellent job and they had their opportunity to shine in the spotlight and be celebrated as if they were seasoned designers. I know that my girl, Saniyyah Bilalof Curio Styling was in the back as the model coordinator, but I was so pleasantly surprised to see her strutting down the catwalk, the girl werked!!! I also saw my girl, Keziah of Philly Hijabs Killing It who also served as the Assistant Design Director. She looked absolutely stunning in her red traditional dress. She is just so stylish!
Side Note: There are not any photos to show you of the clothing that appeared on the runway because we were asked not to take pictures of the women for modesty sake, so please enjoy the ones that are posted here and make an effort to attend one in person, you will not be disappointed.
Fashionably out, Tweety Elitou