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glow

WITH GLOWCO

786 shades of

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TREPEZZI DIVES INTO 2019


MARCH - APRIL 2019

FOOD FA SH I O N

Photography: ishotthe

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GLOW CO

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ISLAND ESCAPE

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BORA AKSU SPRING/SUMMER

H E A LTH

2019 COLLECTION

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Article MARYLING Spring/Summer 2019 Island Escape Collection

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BLUEBERRY CAKE

NO FINE IN CONFINEMENT

JAMILA COLLECTIVE

786 COSMETICS

O PI N I O N 

THIS PAGE

BROWNIE

MAKING A BIG SPLASH

BE A U T Y Article: Trepezzi

CHOCOLATE RASPBERRY

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COVER

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LIVING 

FROM LONDON TO BARCELONA: CHASING THE SUN AND A SLOWER PACE OF LIFE

REPRESENTATION: WHY DOES IT MATTER AFTER ALL?

Disclaimer: All rights reserved. No part of this magazine or content may be reproduced or used without the wri en permission of the publisher: C.A. Editorial Consultants. All informa on contained in this magazine is for informa on only, and is, as far as we are aware, correct at the me of going to press. The views, ideas, comments, and opinions expressed in this publica on are solely of the writers, interviewees, press agencies, and manufacturers and do not represent the views of the editor or the publisher. Whilst every care is taken to ensure the accuracy and honesty in both editorial and adver sing content at press me, the publisher will not be liable for any inaccuracies or losses incurred. Readers are advised to contact manufacturers and retailers directly with regard to the price of products/services referred to in this magazine. If you submit material to us, you automa cally grant C.A. Editorial Consultants a license to publish your submission in whole or in part in all edi ons of the magazine, including licensed edi ons worldwide and in any physical or digital format throughout the world.


As I sit here and cross out the days on my desk calendar, it scares me to know that we’re already hitting the third month of 2019. Why does it feel like we just turned the page to the new year? Anyway, speaking of the new year, I would like to personally apologise for going dark over January and February. You must have also been looking out for the 2019 issue. Sadly due to some unforeseen circumstances, we had to postpone the issue to this one. We hope we didn’t keep you guys waiting… Well, we’re BACK! And we’re not going anywhere. To everyone who stood by us with your love and support, I’d like to personally say THANK YOU! What a perfect time to get the ball rolling than in March, hey? It’s International Women’s Month! We here at GAYA would like to wish each and every one of you beautiful, strong, intelligent women out there a very HAPPY INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY! So, let’s keep on striving to break the glass ceiling, change mindsets and kick some ass!

Love & peace

Juliana Iskandar EDITOR-IN-CHIEF, GAYA MAGAZINE

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Fashion

MAKING A BIG

Photography by ishotthe

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t’s 2019 and Modest Fashion is no longer a foreign term in the fashion industry. Modest Fashion today is spotted on fashion ads and runways of international fashion shows. And its momentum is not ceasing any time soon. Modest Fashion is making a big splash in two areas where one would not necessarily think of modest fashion – activewear and swimwear. No doubt, the burkini has made its name in the industry and we are now all too familiar with modest swimwear, however, one can argue that the idea of a fully covered swimwear is still in its infancy. Many brands have since emerged with modest swimwear to cater to the growing number of women who seek to bask in the summer sun and enjoy a dip in the pool without compromising their personal choice and their lifestyle.

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"FRILLS & THRILLS" FULL COVERAGE SWIMSUIT IN PLUM


"RUFFLE TRUFFLES" FULL COVERAGE SWIMSUIT IN PRINT

For many women of many faiths, adhering to specific standards of modesty is important irrespective of the season. With new emerging brands, what sets these brands apart? Why subscribe to one and not the other? We delve into Trepezzi - one such modest fashion brand that is taking the modest swimwear to another level. Founded in 2018 by two young and entrepreneurial women, Berfu Pakkan Ramazanoglu and Linda Kender, Trepezzi swimwear aims to offer its customers modest swimwear that not only looks good but also protects the wearer from harmful UV rays. 8

Trepezzi’s pieces are made of the highest quality material that have been treated with UV protection and a Bionic FinishŽC6 to repel water, oil and soil, ensuring the fabric to also dry faster. Luxury and fashion are paramount in the design of the Trepezzi swimwear so we take a sneak peek behind the scenes with Berfu and Linda to see how Trepezzi began and why, and what we can look forward to in the future.

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Hello ladies, thank you so much for the opportunity to speak to you. First and foremost, please tell us more about Trepezzi. Spill the details. Trepezzi opened our virtual doors to business on July 31st 2018 joining one of the fastest growing industries in the world; the modest fashion industry. We introduce a new take on the modest swimwear segment, with revolutionary cuts, designs, ideas, colours & forms that promise to change the industry standards. Driven by an apparent gap in the covering segment, our approach to design, production and delivery promises a luxurious, chic, modern, fashionable as well as functional take on the partial and full coverage swimwear segment. The versatile swimwear has flown off the virtual shelves as the products are resonating with the target audiences, with interest apparent from across the globe!

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We understand that with any fashion brand, the look of the garment is important. You imagine what your customers would look good in and voila, you make beautiful clothes. That’s the crux of any fashion brand. But you also take into account UV protection on your swimwear. Why is that important to the Trepezzi brand? The sun has changed; we all hear about global warming...its implications are very serious on every level...especially on our skin, so skin protection is now a must and not an option anymore, Trepezzi strongly believes in protectionwear that covers from the harmful sun rays completely and that can only be achieved through UPF protection and not just the use of sunblock creams and traditional swim material which is not designed to cover and that’s why all our products are treated with 50+ UPF.

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"RUFFLE TRUFFLES" FULL COVERAGE SWIMSUIT IN ANTHRACITE

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Do you feel that by focusing on UV protection on your garments, that sets you apart from the rest of the modest swimwear brands? If not, what sets you apart? What makes Trepezzi different? Well it certainly is one of our differentiating factors, but not the only one. What really sets Trepezzi apart from the competition is our designs, and attention to details! We’ve approached this process from two sides; one is a very aesthetic one, ensuring we incorporate all the fashion and colour trends for SS18&19 into our designs with modern cuts that cover without compromising style. And then we completely flipped that design aspect to a more functional approach where the leading motivation was “what are the common challenges of a modest swimsuit...and how can we address these challenges, not only by not compromising the design aspect... but actually enhancing it”. And so came in some of our signature design values, such as the high waisted corset tights, that not only are they flattering in terms of giving a more slender appearance, but also act as a barrier to the top sticking directly to the stomach and showing more than it should when wet.

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Some other design aspects are our signature finishes on the ankles and wrists, where the x finish allows for a more complimenting appearance without the usual ride up that happens if it’s not too tight! Also, we’ve made sure to have a comprehensive collection, using different elements to distinguish every single piece from the other, we’ve added new silhouettes that have not been seen before on a modest swimsuit, ensuring different products cater to different type of women of different body shapes, age and tastes! How did you (Berfu and Linda) start in the fashion industry? Was this something that you have always wanted to do? We are both very creative women, with a real passion for product, interior and fashion design! Having been caught up in the corporate world for years, we had decided to team up to create a fashion brand that will make a difference in the lives of the women who will buy into it...The “Trepezzi Tribe”! The modest swimsuit and fashion rash guard were interesting to us on so many levels as it needed to function and be beautiful in and out of the water, as two women who are solution oriented, it created a great opportunity for us to put two of our passions together to design a product in fashion!

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"DRAWLS & THRAWLS" FULL COVERAGE SWIMSUIT IN MINT

Modest swimwear is still in its infancy compared to modest fashion as a whole. The number of modest swimwear brands are few and far between. Do you think the idea of modest swimwear will grow in the coming months or years? How has the response been to modest swimwear in your opinion? We believe this segment has been neglected long enough, and as we see more and more women on the beach embracing their modest swimsuit, we are sure there will be more and more brands taking notice and getting in on the action.

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A few years ago, there was this whole debate on the ban of the burkini. The burkini was perceived as nothing other than a covered-up swimwear – drab and so called “unflattering”. Do you think that with more attention on modest swimwear and showcasing it in a different light, say perhaps showcasing its luxury, beauty; more of it as a fashion piece rather than a “covered up swimwear for muslims”, do you think that would change minds on how it’s perceived? 100%. As people have their prejudices against anything that is “different” than their own norms, making it aesthetically appealing will make it more acceptable amongst the ones who believe in it as well as the people who don’t.

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A lot of our customers have expressed that they are stepping out so much more confidently into public beaches and private pool sides feeling like they belong to their surroundings rather than standing out for the inappropriateness of their attire. Our customers are getting asked where they bought their swimwear in a complimenting fashion and not told to go be like anybody else! We believe beauty changes the world, and we would like to contribute to that narrative one modest swimsuit at a time.

RIGHT: "RITA" SWIM TURBAN IN TEAL LEFT: "GRACE" SWIM TURBAN IN TEAL & PLUM

Trepezzi started in 2018 and its already been picked up to showcase in Dubai for IFDC's Pret-A-Cover Buyers Lane by the Retail Summit. What can customers look forward to in the future with Trepezzi? "RITA" SWIM TURBAN IN ARMY GREEN & RED

It is truly a great honour to be recognized by the industry so early on in our journey! We believe the IFDC is validating our efforts to become the leading modest swimwear brand in months and years to come. Our customers can look forward to new silhouettes for sure, complimenting beach accessories...And a few surprises we’ll be revealing soon! We are excited about the future!

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Fashion

We’ve seen the big brands do it – modest-fying or hijabifying the activewear to cater to the growing demographic of women who stay active and at the same time want to maintain their personal style and choice. Some have hit the mark and some have fallen short. Whilst some mainstream brands work in collaboration with such women to get it right, some just know what they are looking for because, well….they are such women. So when something is created for Muslim women, by Muslim women, it is definitely worth a second look. #glowgetter 14

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s the new year is finally upon us, we’ll venture a guess and say that one of the new year’s resolutions for many of you is to get in better health and in better shape. We’ll even go as far as saying that gym memberships would be on the incline at this moment. There is no shame in that because with every single year that rolls by, many, if not, all of us start with big and positive dreams. No one comes to the table saying “Ok, I want to sleep more this year cos last year 8-hours of sleep didn’t cut it” or “My goal for 2019 is to conquer McD’s every day till they get sick of seeing my face!” The real goal (and challenge) is to stick to it and not dwindle halfway in the year. Actually, come to think, if you’ve managed getting to the middle of year with that resolution, that’s a big accomplishment because trust us when we say, our track record of keeping such a resolution is one month. One great motivator for many, us included, to get our butts to the gym are the cute outfits we would plan for ourselves. From printed leggings, to the cute tops that cover up the areas we were in the gym to get rid of in the first place. We don’t know about you but we do find it slightly more difficult to find uber cute modest activewear though. 15

Yes, we could probably find long tops that reach below the waistline but most of the ones we’ve seen so far from big names that we don’t wish to mention, are still pretty body hugging. Don’t even get us started on the leggings. Needless to say, we were psyched to learn about a new name in modest activewear. What made it more special for us was that it is home-grown right here in Singapore! Can you hear us swelling with pride? GLOWco is a Muslim-owned activewear lifestyle brand created for the active, conservative woman. Because GLOWco is Muslim-owned, you know that the clothes you will be getting fits what we, modest-wearing or hijab-wearing women are looking for. What’s more, Nawal Alhaddad, the beauty and brains behind GLOWco, is a hijabi herself and a fitness instructor to boot! So yes ladies, not only can you rest assure that the GLOWco wear will be suitable to sustain all that sweat and grime in the gym, you know you will be looking chic and modest while at it. We speak to Nawal about GLOWco and what modesty in action means.

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I was jumping from marketplace to marketplace looking excited to reignite my activewear collection - but there was nothing for me. NAWAL ALHADDAD, FOUNDER OF GLOWCO

TOP: GLOWCO EXCLUSIVE | AFTERGLOW IN BLACK BOTTOM: GLOWCO X LULLYSELB | GLOW GIRL TIGHTS

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Hi Nawal, before we delve into GLOWco, please tell us more about yourself and your work in the fitness industry for those who don’t know. Hello beautiful! Gladly! I started out doing cancer stem cell research and thought I had my life pretty much set career-wise. I enjoyed it, but always felt like I was meant for more something that was more me. Being an athlete and a dancer back in school, I thought I'd open a couple of dance fitness classes for fun. Months passed and the classes were gaining attention, mainly because it was for women only. I didn't intend for it to grow so quick. Shortly after, I said goodbye to my lab apparatus and my very own brand Nawal Haddad Fitness (NHF) was born. Five years went on and we have garnered over 3000 members all throughout Singapore - and expanded to 6 different fitness programs. Yet, still maintaining proudly the concept of Ladies-Only and Hijab-Friendly. I'm also a mum to a baby boy! Motherhood needs a whole other article, a much much longer one at that. *smile*

You’ve recently donned the hijab. You look absolutely gorgeous by the way. Could we say that you started GLOWco because you felt that you had to ditch all your old activewear and found it difficult to find modest activewear? Thank you! Oh absolutely! For years, activewear was all I shopped for - you could say I had an extremely dry fashion sense. You can imagine how lost I was when I had to ‘hijabify’ my wardrobe. We’re talking long sleeves, neck covering, head covering, layers...and the list goes on. It was then when I understood how women in my position felt - I was jumping from marketplace to marketplace looking excited to reignite my activewear collection - but there was nothing for me. That was my personal journey. To add on, after years of running hijabfriendly fitness classes, I was pretty contented that I was able to provide these women an outlet to enjoy and express themselves freely through fitness. I then had a realisation that the very same women who enjoyed exercising, did not enjoy the way they looked doing it. Those experiences sparked something huge in me and I wanted to do something about it.

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TOP: GLOWCO EXCLUSIVE | AFTERGLOW IN DARK GREY BOTTOM: GLOWCO EXCLUSIVE | BOOT CUT IN BLACK

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We know this is a story about GLOWco, but if you don’t mind, could you share with us your hijab journey? What made you don the hijab? We believe every woman’s journey is unique and beautiful. Fun fact: You can’t tell right now, but being of Arab (Yemeni) descent, I have very curly hair (I look like a lion in the morning!). My huge locks were my entire identity - and because of that, donning the hijab had me lost for a while, like I didn't belong. 19

I remembered constantly waiting for ‘THE SIGN’ and was always busy writing lists in my head of obstacles I could possibly face as a new hijabi. I was overthinking it, and that took away the joy of celebrating a new lifestyle, a new relationship with my deen. I came to the realisation that there was never going to be a perfect time to start. There will always be reason after reason on why I should start later. I started carrying a more positive outlook - and decided to take it one day at a time.

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TOP: NASHATA | ULTRA HOODIE IN PURPLE

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Ok now back to GLOWco. Tell us more about it. We understand that there are several brands under the GLOWco brand and you’ve even collaborated with some Singapore modest fashion designers on your bespoke line. We’re ecstatic to be sharing this! Well essentially, GLOWco is a platform a marketplace of brands. At the start, we really took our time to learn heartfelt stories of how they started their own brand and what fitness and modesty meant in their books. We’ve forged such loving friendships from this and are so grateful to be a representation of their work. We proudly carry a small brand of our own as well, GLOWco Exclusive where we manufacture our own designs. We carefully designed handpicked fabrics and chose colours that would complement the everyday active woman. After several iterations, we had ourselves a collection we could be proud of.

Is collaboration important in the fashion industry? I believe that collaborations can open up your business in ways you can never imagine. This would mean an opportunity break from your regular business routine. To switch lanes and give yourself a chance to be creative, to innovate and surprise yourself. What would you like to see more of in the modest fashion industry? I would love to see the continuity of big powerhouse brands supporting the modesty movement. Take Dolce & Gabbana for example, when they announced a line of high end abayas for Muslim women in the Middle East. Or even Uniqlo’s Lifewear line, with Muslim fashion designer and blogger Hana Tajima. They felt a strong social responsibility, and that’s admirable.

The launch of GLOWco was celebrated with a special collaboration with our dear friends at LullySelb - who have definitely made a mark in the modest fashion industry. We meticulously worked on prints for our Sports Tights range, which to our surprise sold out within a couple of weeks.

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SWIMWEAR: EMSPORTIF | AQUA CLASSIC IN BLACK

What does the future hold for GLOWco and for Nawal Alhaddad? I’d like to carry on this pursuit of sharing modest activewear as a new mainstream of clothing, to shatter common hijabi stereotypes. The hijab should in no way be a limitation. I would like for GLOWco to speak strength and power. To be the voice of I CAN. To be an advocate for inclusivity.

To follow GLOWco online, click the below icons.

Myself personally, to expand the family! The louder the household, the better! :)

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Fashion

ISLAND J

oin Italian fashion brand MARYLING on an adventure with their Spring/Summer 2019 collection, Island Escape. Inspired by the colours and scenery of Greece, a paradise on earth in the heart of the Mediterranean, the collection is an ode to the holiday lifestyle of modern goddesses, where sophistication and luxury style converge into a spontaneous vision of elegance and unconventional femininity.

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Born out of a distinctive combination inspired by supermodel and entrepreneur Claudia Schiffer, and the creative approach of the famed architect Antoni Gaudi, the modern goddess is a code of classicism; one which MARYLING has interpreted via an innovative approach of imprinting architectural elements on different styles. A study of proportion, shape, volume and more, MARYLING realises artistic expressions of uninhibited luxury that become an inspirational territory to be explored.

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MODANISA AW/18 COLLECTION


MODANISA AW/18 COLLECTION

The Spring/Summer 2019 collection reveals sinuous experimentalism, with exclusive and precious fabrics, and Neomodernism expressed in a triumph of intense, bold and luminous colours; ocean blue, bright red and pale-yellow trace an ideal path that reflects a stylistic language full of contrasts for a strong aesthetic. The collection spans four distinct themes: Cretan Mist, Geo Pelike, Mosaic and Olympus.

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Cretan Mist Cretan Mist takes on fresh, classic silhouettes that fuse soft, powdery hues inspired by the pastel-coloured buildings that line the romantic alleys of Crete Island and Greece’s mystical charm into undulating lines and tone-on-tone combinations eliciting springtime emotions.

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Geo Pelike Geo Pelike translates the grandeur of Athenian black-figure pelike and their intricately painted designs into a realm of uninhibited brushstrokes and geometric and organic shapes. Morphed into luxurious fabrics that ebb and flow with a graceful fluidity of movement, the harmonious proportions are a celebration of antiquity and sleek modernity.

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Mosaic Taking its cue from tiled mosaic sculptures, Mosaic is a voyage through time in a dialogue that intertwines fashion and art. Revealing a tale of regal elegance in colourful mosaic patterns and curving lines that run across textiles and seams with a free-spirited energy, these contemporary silhouettes embody feminine sophistication.

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Olympus Rife with bright and lively shades, Olympus is a sublime abstraction of Mount Olympus’ rich flora and fauna. Imbued with the spirit of freedom and adventure in a riot of geometric shapes and checkerboard patterns, the stylistic language embodies the essence of individuality. Exuberant bursts of yellow, orange and passionate red meet bold geometric lines that evoke the mount’s smooth peaks. 29

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Fashion

BORA AKSU SPRING/SUMMER 2019 COLLECTION

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ORA AKSU’s SS19 collection is inspired by the nomadic soul of Romani poetess, Bronislawa Wajs, widely known as Papusza. In an ode to Papusza, the collection incorporates her free-spirited ethos characterised by a determination to oppose traditional limitations.

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Married in a traditional ceremony at 15, Papusza grew unhappy in her marriage and took to singing as an outlet for her discomfort. She began to compose her own songs based on traditional Romani storytelling, and soon her talents caught the eye of Polish poet Ficowski, who published several of her poems, making them known to the world. Papusza’s life took a negative turn when she was accused of revealing secrets of her native culture. Papusza was later regarded as a traitor and banished for the next 34 years of her life. As it often happens – her work grew in popularity after her death.

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In a circular representation of Papusza’s life, the hurdles that Papusza had to face formed the creative expression of BORA AKSU’s SS19 collection. The mixture of vibrant floral prints, soft silk tulles and laces represent the poet’s nomadic self, the shades of whites representing her early wedding, and deep blues with contrasting white embroideries reflecting her passionate and determined side. Exuding a soft-spoken nomadic message, the pieces feature embroidered, cut-out lace patterns in white and dark shades as seen on the dress’s collars, cuffs and ribbons. The layering is exquisitely designed with technical embroideries, prints and textures in romantic lines and shapes. A softness is maintained throughout, mimicking the perfect balance achieved in Papuzsa's character.

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The capes in tulle and organza are also a dominant part of the collection and create an ethereal feel. A palette including lilacs, purples, corals and hot pinks are used together with quieter shades such as whites, creams, soft blues, pinks and blacks. Much of the detailing is inspired by the early 20th century Romani gypsy lifestyle and its symbolic dress codes. BORA AKSU’s SS19 collection encompasses three distinctive themes of Age of Innocence, Still Granite and Tea Party.

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AGE OF INNOCENCE Featuring shades of white and light pastels, the Age of Innocence selection embodies an element of fragility with soft cuts and silhouettes. The romance comes alive in cream and white combinations, and the use of lace and crochet, fusing femininity into the pleats of the dresses. 35

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STILL GRANITE The Still Granite selection infuses the essence of Papusza’s melancholic nature into the silhouettes of the pieces, disguising BORA AKSU’s signature romance within menswear detailing, muted shades and clean lines on linen, denim and crisp cotton layers. 36

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TEA PARTY Papuzsa’s nomadic gypsy life comes alive in a burst of colour with Tea Party, featuring a selection of refreshing corals and warm colours, combined with vibrant floral prints and tropical applique to create a chic, ethereal feel. Fashioned with a youthful vigour, the textured checks, patterns and ribbed frills add a dimension of feminine androgyny to get you in a party mood.

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Fashion

JAMILA CO L L EC T I V E

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Imagine leaving everything, watching your family die in front of you, having your home destroyed, seeing family members thrown in jail. Imagine all of that happening and then being discriminated against in another country, where you are just trying to seek refuge and keep your children alive.

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ince the Syrian civil war began on 15th March 2011, families have suffered the torment and brutal conflict that has killed hundreds of thousands. Women, children, families torn apart by one of the worst humanitarian crises of our time.

According to UNHCR, more than 5.6 million Syrians have fled the country as refugees, with 20% of registered Syrian refugees being women between the ages of 18 and 59 years old. Whilst refugees face unimaginable conditions in their own country, they face a whole set of challenges once they finally get settled into a new country. Among them, facing the polarising opinions within the society which is a result of increasing sociopolitical concerns. 39

Politics aside, let’s look at it from a humanity perspective. These men, women and children are fleeing a wartorn country, to seek a better, safer place for themselves and their families – they are fleeing for their lives. It is a basic human need to want to live in peace and to build a better future for ourselves and our children. We are not so different after all. As touched on earlier, these Syrian refugees face a new set of challenges once they reach peaceful shores. They are thrust into a whole new country with new people, perhaps even a new language – to begin all over again to rebuild the lives they had left behind and lost. Many may feel that refugees are required to assimilate into society – adapting to customs and cultures of their host countries.

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LEMAR ADJUSTABLE RING & LAILA CLUSTER NECKLACE - SPRING PALETTE

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However, if we begin to allow them to integrate and not assimilate into society, hence becoming a part of the community whilst keeping their traditions and cultural heritage, we may be able to steer the conversation towards a more peaceful and loving direction. It is also important to note that empowering immigrants and refugees with a skill that would allow them to be selfsustainable is also paramount to the integration process.

We were lucky to have stumbled upon The Jamila Collective which does just that. The Jamila Collective is engrained with three goals – to create beautiful jewelry that bring joy to their customers, create opportunities that empower Syrian refugee women through work and employment, and to share the stories of Syrian refugee women with the American customers...and now, through this, we hope, the world. In January 2017, Megan became acquainted with her first Syrian refugee family. The experience bonded her with many Syrian refugee women in San Diego. Megan’s passion and drive to be a part of the change in their lives, spurred her to start The Jamila Collective. Jamila, which means, beauty in Arabic, is not just about the creation of beautiful jewelry but also tells the beautiful stories of these Syrian women. We are humbled to speak to Megan on how it all began and how we can all be a part of the change.

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Hello Megan, thank you for speaking with us. It’s such a joy to be able to get the chance to learn more about you and The Jamila Collective. So, as you mentioned, it was in January 2017 that you had your first experience with a Syrian refugee family. Could you tell us how did you get involved and what that first experience was like? My mom and I signed up to adopt a local Syrian refugee family after seeing a posting from Syrian Community Network - San Diego on a friend’s Facebook account. We were matched with a family and met them with a translator the first time. We were so nervous because we knew it would be hard to communicate. It turned out, they were more nervous than us! It took a while to start getting good communication between us and them, but then we were able to communicate well enough with translation apps, friends who spoke Arabic and English, and lots of pictures.

Could you tell us more about the jewelry that The Jamila Collective offers? What are they made of? Yes, I’m happy to share. Quality is very important to me. I’m very picky about the materials we use. All of our designs are playful, but refined. They are made of sterling silver, stainless steel, Swarovski® crystals, and freshwater pearls. The gorgeous jewelry offered at The Jamila Collective are made by these beautiful and strong Syrian women, correct? Does the collective work with an organisation to teach them the skill? And does the collective work with an organisation to collaborate with these Syrian refugees in San Diego? Correct. Every piece is produced by the Syrian refugee makers that work with Jamila Collective. We worked with Syrian Community Network - San Diego to help get the application out initially. However, all the training was done by me. If our makers need assistance with things outside of the scope of this job (things like medical, housing, and education-related), I direct them to Syrian Community Network or the local resettlement organizations to work with them on those other things.

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LORE CLUSTER EARRINGS - ROSE GOLD PEARL NOUR LINE BRACELET - ROSE/AQUA

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MEGAN, OWNER OF THE JAMILA COLLECTION (LEFT)

Purchases can be made online and you do offer worldwide shipping which is great as our readers are international. Could you tell us where do sales proceeds go? Yes, we have an online shop at thejamilacollective.com. We do offer international shipping! If anyone has questions about international shipping, feel free to reach out and ask us directly. Currently, our makers are paid per piece that they complete, so they are paid no matter what. Then it is my responsibility to sell the jewelry online, through local events, and to retailers. Since we are a new business, all our profits are going directly back into production costs - raw materials and paying the makers - so we can keep growing and expanding.

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I understand that The Jamila Collective will soon be launching pins that can be worn as hijab/scarf pins or bag pins. How exciting. How do you keep coming up with new merchandise? Do the women one day tell you “oh it would be nice to have hijab pins!�? Yes, we just starting releasing them on Instagram actually! My joy is in designing pieces, so I always have lots of ideas in my head. I actually came up with the pin idea because I wanted a product that my makers would feel confident wearing and showing off in everyday life. I also thought the pins would be a great connection to our Muslim women customers. Since every pin is designed and made by the women, I feel that it creates a really special connection between the maker and buyer of these one-of-a-kind pieces.

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As we all know far too well, we sadly live in a very divisive social climate. Refugees in host countries do face animosity and sometimes fear. Do you have any advice on how we can be part of the change? Absolutely. America has been a huge change and shock to these Syrian refugee families, especially with the divisive climate right now. My best advice for citizens in countries that host refugees, especially Syrian refugees, is to just imagine if you were in their place. Imagine leaving everything, watching your family die in front of you, having your home destroyed, seeing family members thrown in jail. Imagine all of that happening and then being discriminated against in another country, where you are just trying to seek refuge and keep your children alive. Treat these refugees how you would want to be treated. Welcome them with smiles, kind words, and open hearts.

ANAAM ADJUSTABLE RING - WHITE PEARL LORE CLUSTER EARRINGS - IRIDESCENT PEARL

AYA CLUSTER EARRINGS - CORAL

Follow The Jamila Collective online by clicking the icons below.

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Beauty

shades of

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alal – a word used to describe what is permissible, a word we are so used to be associated with food. But with the exponential growth of modest fashion, a bright light has shone on other aspects of fashion, beauty and lifestyle that cater to the large demographic of Muslim women.

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We cannot stress this fact enough – Muslim women, just like other women, want to feel beautiful and, fashion and beauty are not uncommon topics to us. With the rise of modest fashion, came the rise of permissible or halal beauty products and cosmetics. From makeup to skincare, halal is now not an uncommon word in the beauty industry. Aside from the fact that halal means the products do not contain any alcohol or animal substance, halal products can also come with a set of healthier benefits. Let’s take a dive into halal nail polish and a brand that focuses on providing nail polish colors that are not just beautiful but halal. Our Muslim sisters rejoice! 786 Cosmetics creates vegan nail polish that is free from 11 harsh chemicals, is cruelty-free, breathable and certified halal. With such a unique name, we just had to find out more.

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“The Arabic letters of the opening phrase of the Quran “Bismillah irRahman ir-Rahim” (In the name of Allah, the most Merciful, the most Beneficent) sum up to the numerical value 786 based on the chronological order of the Arabic Alphabet. In some Muslim cultures, this number is considered holy or lucky - and sometimes simply considered a shortened way of saying bismillah. One of the founders, Ibrahim Ali, chose the name for the brand because he saw how those three numbers had such a huge influence on Muslim communities,” explains the 786 Cosmetics team when asked about their unique name. So, halal versus vegan. We are so used to seeing vegan cosmetics in the market but is there a difference between halal and vegan, we wondered. “Yes, there is!” explains the 786 Cosmetics team. “If a cosmetic product is halal, that means it is also vegan because it does not contain any animal products or animal by-products such as gelatin or animal dyes. If a cosmetic product is vegan, that does not necessarily mean that it is halal. Halal cosmetics need to be halal certified and cannot contain prohibited alcohol.”

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786 HYDERABAD HALAL NAIL POLISH

Ok so now we know…but there’s more… “Halal and vegan nail polishes have many health benefits. Once you know about the bad ingredients in standard nail polish, you’ll never go back!” says the 786 Cosmetics team. “Vegan nail polish is becoming a standard because consumers are aware of the horrible ways big companies use to get certain colors or dyes in their cosmetics. Knowing a cosmetic product is vegan is knowing that no animals or insects were harmed in the making of the product. 786 Cosmetics nail polishes are also crueltyfree as well, meaning we do not test our products on animals. 48

Our nail polishes are also certified halal and water-permeable. Halal cosmetics are free of prohibited alcohol. Prohibited alcohol in nail polish can dry out your nails and cause them to become brittle over time. The water-permeable aspect of our nail polishes allows for oxygen and water to permeate the nail polish, allowing your nails to breathe and not be trapped under a thick layer of polish. This also makes the nail polishes wudufriendly! 786 Cosmetics nail polishes are also free of 11 harsh chemicals found in standard nail polish such as formaldehyde, toulene, and DBP, all 11 of which are known to have negative health effects.”

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NAIL ART WITH 786 PETRA, GRANADA & KASHMIR

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...We’re not just a brand for Muslims, but we are a brand that celebrates Muslim culture and history...

A very detailed explanation by the 786 Cosmetics team and we bet you’re looking at your nails right about now as you’re reading this because we’re doing that too. So, whether wearing it is a faithbased decision or not, you might want to look into that. Inspired by cities around the globe, 786 Cosmetics strives to bring quality cosmetics to women around the world. 50

“While we mostly serve the United States, United Kingdom, and Canada, we have received orders from almost every country around the world including Japan, Germany, and the small island country of Mauritius! We ship worldwide and we also have distributors in many countries such as India and Nigeria,” the team points out. Their nail polish colors are influenced by the stunning beauty of many cities such as the lavender flowers in Granada, Spain, the lively culture of Hyderabad, India, and the famous Giza Pyramids of Cairo, Egypt. “786 Cosmetics is different from other halal cosmetics brands because we tailor our products specifically to our customers and they have a connection to the nail polish names. Because our nail polishes are inspired by cities around the world, specifically places related to the Muslim faith, we see the impact it has on someone when they can make a personal connection to the color or the name. We have had customers tell us, “Oh, Hyderabad! My mother was raised there,” or someone even said “My middle name is Samar!” to our indigo nail polish color, Samarkand.”

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786 AGRA HALAL NAIL POLISH

“Our other founder, Iqra Isphahani chose the names in order represent the Muslim community with places they came from or places that related to the Muslim faith. She says “We’re not just a brand for Muslims, but we are a brand that celebrates Muslim culture and history. This is our way of capturing a little bit of the beauty in each of these cities, bottling it up, and giving it to you.” Most importantly, what makes 786 special is that we’re made up of a great team that is passionate about the brand, its message, and its products.”

“Our best-seller is our Kashmir nail polish. It is an elegant light purple that looks like a nice neutral on medium skin tones, but perfectly suits lighter and darker skin tones as well! Kashmir was inspired by Kashmir’s traditional tea, Kashmiri Chai, and the pink blossoms and tulips of the Mughal Gardens. Our recent release Isfahan, a darker mauve version of Kashmir, is also becoming a best-seller. This color was inspired by the "Ispahan" roses found in Iran.”

With so many colors (and meanings behind them) how can one choose just one?

Follow 786 Cosmetics online by clicking the icons below.

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Opinion

REPRESENTATION

Why does it matter after all? Written by Amal El Gharbi

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e live in an era of images, we’re constantly exposed to them, and when we used to be only users of online platforms, we’ve become creators of varied contents, whether it is through amazing photos, videos, stories, written posts, and now even podcasts. Also, when only a few years ago, we used to be amazed to see the one and only Black model on the catwalks, or the only people of color and minorities on our screens, playing positive and not stereotypical roles in the mainstream media. We today cannot even imagine a non diverse and non inclusive world, right?

And we’re all still working on it, because despite the progress, there’s still a lot to be done. Not because there’s a lack of competent people of color. There are many talented, driven, passionate, extraordinary people out there. But because of our system - the system we, as minorities, also maintain – we put a heavy burden on the brave and passionate ones who dare to put themselves out there; who work hard, create, collaborate, write, record, share... Let’s be real for a minute.

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I’ve been reading many discussions lately around identity and choices, and I witnessed so much rejection, condescension and hate on social media. Which led me to think and question the concepts of identity, community and representation. Representation and the sense of community I would like to address the question of “representation and the sense of community” and most specifically the violence it can generate online, from the community itself. As a minority, we want to be and feel represented but, from what I can see, we want it only the way we are taught we have to or only the way we think the people who “represent” us have to or only the way we judge the best. And that is not right, nor fair, nor does it make any sense. Let me explain.

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That person is representing their own self with their own personal story, creating and sharing their passion and interests, and it happens that you can find yourself in certain parts of it; certain elements resonate with your own story or parts of your identity. T h a t i s a l l. We have no right to think one person “owes” us something. I am reacting and writing this because I am so sad, baffled and frustrated by all the hate comments I read today on social media, from an important part of the Muslim community towards Muslim bloggers.

...we also need to stop telling people “one perspective is the best” because it’s prevalent and the “most agreed on”, which looks more like religious condescension and lack of humility...

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And if you’re not happy, then go and work hard, and create and make the change you want to see for a better representation of YOURSELF, if it matters to you that much. Period.

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Virtual does not mean unreal. Respect of personal choices. It looks like it is so easy to write hate comments and spread hatred online. But let’s not forget that virtual does not mean unreal. The mean words you write are real, and the effects are real and devastating. Because you’re talking to a real person, a human being, who cannot stay indifferent to your gratuitously nasty comments. I see women being bullied and harassed, because of their choices to dress in a certain way, to dress in a way they feel more comfortable and safe in. We have no right to tell them “this way of dressing is not the proper one” because of one specific way of religious interpretation. We also need to stop telling people “one perspective is the best” because it’s prevalent and the “most agreed on”, which looks more like religious condescension and lack of humility. And again, people are policing women’s bodies.

And this is not okay. What concerns me most is the amount of ‘Likes’ under hate, judgmental and ignorant comments. It is not okay to hate (or even dislike) someone just because they think and act differently. We need to say it, and repeat it. It is not okay. The lack of tolerance when it comes to divergence of opinions is so striking and does so much harm to that community. Your perspective or what you’ve been taught is not the one and only truth. The way you think and experience life is your truth, not someone else’s.

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What matters most? Isn’t that to live in a community built on respect, love, care and empathy? I can only talk about the Muslim community online, the one I am following most.

Is it that representation you want to create? Is it the world you choose to live in?

Because with all that hate, what everyone can see is an uncaring, judgmental and hateful community.

We need to cultivate and spread more love and tolerance for one another. We need to change the sad reality that is cyber bullying and hate. And we can speak up, talk, share, write, record. It’s up to you.

I personally don’t…

THE WRITER: AMAL EL GHARBI Editor, translator, writer for Peace, born and raised in Brussels, Belgium, Aamaly - alias Amal El Gharbi, is passionate about modest fashion and interested in social and women issues. Aamaly mag is a bilingual online space created after an inspirational trip to Canada to share passion for modest fashion, but also insights on women’s conditions, education and society.

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Food

Chocolate Raspberry Brownie 58

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INGREDIENTS 115 grams (1/2 cup or 1 stick) unsalted butter 200 grams (1 and 1/3 cup) dark chocolate, broken into pieces 100 grams (1/2 cup) caster sugar 90 grams (1/2 cup) brown sugar 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 3 large eggs 70 grams (1/2 cup) plain flour 20 grams (1/4 cup) cocoa powder 125 grams (1 cup) fresh raspberries 75 grams (1/2 cup) milk chocolate chips

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METHOD

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Preheat the oven to 180 C (360 F).

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Grease and line an 8 inch square tin with paper baking, ensuring two sides of the paper overhang.

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Add butter and chocolate to a heatproof bowl and microwave until melted, stirring every 30 seconds. Leave to cool slightly.

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Add the sugar and vanilla to the chocolate mixture and stir.

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Add the eggs, one at a time and stir again.

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Add flour and cocoa and stir until mixture is smooth.

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Add fresh raspberries and chocolate chips and gently stir.

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Pour mixture into prepared tin and very gently smooth over the top.

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Bake the brownie for about 30-35 minutes or until cooked through. It should start to crack on the edges and no longer wobble in the middle.

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Leave to cool completely before cutting into squares.

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Food

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INGREDIENTS 2 Cups All Purpose Flour 2 Teaspoons Baking Powder 3/4 Teaspoons Salt 1 Stick Melted Butter 1 Cup Sugar 2 Eggs, lightly beaten 1 1/2 Teaspoons Vanilla Extract 1/4 Teaspoon Almond Extract 3/4 Cup Milk 2 1/4 Cups Blueberries

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METHOD

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Heat oven to 370F.

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Cream the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy.

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Add the vanilla and almond extract. Add the eggs.

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In a separate bowl, add the flour, baking powder and salt and combine.

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Add half the flour and milk alternately to the batter, mix until combined then add the remaining milk and flour.

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Add the blueberries and mix well.

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Transfer to cake pan and bake for 25 – 30 minutes. Allow to cool then remove from pan if desired.

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Health

in confinement Written by Shuhada Alauddin

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et me start off with a short introduction. I’m from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and several months ago I gave birth to a beautiful baby girl. This is my second time being a mom but it’s just as good as the first time as my eldest boy is now 6 years old. To be honest, there were a lot of things that I forgot about what are actually involved when having a baby. And I’m not talking about dealing with the baby per se...but more on the post-natal period or CONFINEMENT period as we Malaysians are used to calling it. Based on where I’m from and according to my Malay roots; a woman who has just given birth is required to stay at home continuously for 44 days. YES, we are expected to be on HOUSE ARREST (in fact according to my mom I’m not even allowed to go downstairs - because I live in a double storey house) for 44 days after giving birth. This is what we call CONFINEMENT period. It’s a no brainer, as the name suggests…you are confined to the four walls of your home and you are restricted from doing a lot of things (for some washing your hair is a nono, WHAT?!, eating only certain kind of food, etc…). 65

I went through the whole confinement shebang the first time I had my baby boy 6 years ago (wasn’t that great but not too bad) BUT this second time around I REALLY DID NOT TAKE IT TOO WELL! With the all- too- many- restrictions and expectations being a mom to a newborn, add on the sleepless nights AND the fact that you don’t even recognise your own nipples anymore from all the nursing that’s taking place (I mean the first 2 weeks I was feeding my baby every 2 hours...like hello, human milk bar!); I can understand how post-partum depression can easily creep into one’s life.

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Now, don’t get me wrong… #1 - I love my baby and enjoy nursing and bonding with her and that I am grateful for the gift of having a new bundle of joy and all that comes with it. Let’s be clear, this is not about the baby, ok? #2 - I’m all up for confinement and ‘pantang’ (in Malay basically means the things we can and cannot do while being on confinement) because I honestly believe they are there for good reasons. But I also think there are some aspects to it that needs to be changed, modified or adapted from person-to-person. So here are some of my thoughts about it:

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caregiver I think some caregivers who are assisting and guiding the new moms through this confinement period are not sensitive enough towards the new mom’s psychological state or change into account. New moms are fragile - physically, mentally and emotionally after going through pregnancy and childbirth. No matter how strong and tough a woman is; she needs all kinds of support and most of all emotional support for her to get through the first 6 weeks (especially) and beyond. So please if you’re a caregiver and can sense that imposing certain restrictions only makes her depressed, then DON’T. If you think you could go easy on certain restrictions without causing any harm to her, please ALLOW it. Better yet, I think caregivers especially the ones that are hired specifically to care for the new moms; should be trained and have some level of psychology knowledge so that they can deal with the new moms better.

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food restriction

Food restriction during confinement is something that I absolutely recommend and abide by because I really think that by eating the right food, it will help your body heal faster. However, I think that it should be adapted to each individual. Just because one person cannot take spinach (for example) because it can cause “wind” in the body of the new mom; doesn’t mean that it will cause the same to another new mom. Plus, nowadays in the digital age we are able to research and be educated on what’s good and bad - so new moms themselves will know what they can and can’t eat because they too want to get strong and heal faster. Why not let them also have a say in what they want to nourish their body with.

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house arrest Ok, just kidding!

I understand why we are not allowed to be going out and about after giving birth. I mean just imagine if you’ve just had a C-sect; after 2 weeks you go to the mall and come back falling sick (let’s face it there are plenty of nasty viruses going around and a new mom may not be strong enough yet to fight off those things). Can you imagine how uncomfortable and painful even for the new mom if she were to start sneezing or coughing? And it won’t just affect her, it will also affect the newborn baby. So, yes, I agree that a new mom shouldn’t be at public places for these reasons (unless it is unavoidable). However, I think a new mom should be allowed to go for short “breaks” somewhere convenient and easy and “not too” public - places that will not put her at risk of being easily infected with anything. This will enable her to walk around a bit and help her heal faster. Not only that, being outside of the house will help her release any kind of stress she may be feeling, soak up the sun (trust me it makes a lot of difference) and seeing other people will make her feel still connected to the rest of the world.

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Okay, maybe this is already being done in other parts of the world or maybe it’s just the people around me that use this term but here’s my suggestion... How about instead of using the term confinement, we use “recovery” instead? Maybe it’s just me...but when I was feeling overwhelmed and stressed (and confined) during the early days of my confinement I had a talk with my husband about what I was feeling and he said this - “…don’t think of it as confinement but see it as a time of recovery…” (and of course he said a bunch of other stuff, but they’re not relevant at this point).

from confinement to recovery Sounds simple right? But those words gave me so much comfort and confidence and I don’t know why. Probably it’s all because of the negative connotations that I’ve assigned to the word confinement (the fact that I’m active, any thoughts of being confined feels claustrophobic) and that the term recovery has a more positive connotation to me (a classic case of “mind over matter”). Or if the word recovery doesn’t work for you either, then by all means find one that sits well you. 70

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My message throughout this article is this: To all the mommies out there who are in the same boat I was - do whatever it takes to make YOU feel good and at ease. Do what makes YOU happy; regardless of the expectations and opinions people around you may (and they will) have. Remember, YOU carried a life inside of you for months and probably went through hours of labour to bring that life into this world. YOU deserve to put yourself, happiness and mental and emotional health first.

THE WRITER: SHUHADA ALAUDDIN Shuhada Alauddin is a coach, consultant, speaker & writer at myryl.net where her forte is Personality Development, Colour Therapy & Behavioral Analysis. Her work has been featured in Huffington Post, The Star, The Star Online, Her World, Cosmopolitan Malaysia, and many others. On top of that she has her own TV shows and segments with the local broadcasting stations where she shares on her expertise.

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Travel

FROM

LONDON BARCELONA TO

chasing the sun and a slower pace of life

Written & Photos by Fereshta Amir

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“You are moving to where in Spain?”

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his was my parents' reaction, little over three months ago, when I revealed that my husband and I were relocating to Barcelona for a year. “Technically it’s Spain, but Barcelonians are from Catalunya” I explained to my confused parents. As a child of refugees, I sometimes sense that my digital nomad lifestyle is alien to my well-meaning parents. It’s seen as a luxury to leave a secure and stable life in London behind to experience a slower pace of life in the Mediterranean. In reality, there’s nothing luxurious about my move. I just do what I do in another location, with gratitude for the freedom I have to do so. The feeling of never feeling hundred percent ‘at home’ anywhere as an immigrant or third culture kid is the reason for my neverending itchy feet. So, while to my sweet mum and dad it’s slightly unnecessary to leave London for no solid reason (no job offer for me or my husband), for me it’s very necessary to step outside my comfort zone every so often and experience living somewhere different. I must say, Barcelona is not a bad place to start. 73

Despite it being a popular destination and saturated with tourists during the summertime, we are experiencing the city as locals and are discovering that it has a lingering and effortless Mediterranean energy to it. The seaside and harbour are delightfully quiet in the winter seasons, and the air is fresher depending on where in the city you're located. But London has the globe's cuisine at its doorstep, and about a month into our stay, I started to miss the food scene back home. I started to particularly yearn for my favourite veggie restaurants. As one of the top visited cities in the world, Barcelona is known for its seafood, meat dishes and tapas. Instead, I set out to explore the city’s vegetarian and vegan gems, which to my delight, there were a wealth to be discovered. If Barcelona is on your list of must-see cities and you’re a plant-based food lover like me, I can vouch for the below veggie spots. In the meantime, I’ll continue to persuade my parents to come visit so I can show them how Catalans roll.

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A PLANT-BASED FOODIE’S GUIDE TO BARCELONA

...the feeling of never feeling hundred percent ‘at home’ anywhere as an immigrant or third culture kid is the reason for my never-ending itchy feet...

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a plantbased foodie’s guide to Barcelona

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This restaurant does what it says on the tin: if it’s brunch and cake you’re after, then look no further!

S TA R T Y O U R D AY W I T H

BRUNCH AND CAKE

There are five cafes to choose from in the city and we went to the one located opposite Port Vell, which had the cafe’s philosophy ‘in grandmother we trust’ plastered on the walls. Well, after the brownie pancakes we had, we trust her too!

BY THE SEA PASSEIG DE JOAN DE BORBÓ, 5,08003 BARCELONA. WWW.BRUNCHANDCAKE.COM

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Flax & Kale Tallers is hailed as Barcelona’s first flexitarian restaurant, with a plant-based menu that has the occasional meat or fish dish on it too.

TIME FOR L U N C H AT

FLAX & KALE

CARRER DELS TALLERS 74B, 08001 BARCELONA. WWW.TERESACARLES.COM/FK

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There are two other branches: Flax & Kale Passage, which has everything from Gluten Free Healthy Pizzas to a Kombucha Lab, and Flax & Kale à porter, which is a healthy grab ‘n go and juice bar.

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TA K E A COFFEE & DONUT B R E A K AT

ES PA I J O L I U Based in the trendy El Poblenou area, this new cafe is set in a former warehouse. As well as cooking up delicious food, it sells locally sourced coffee, ceramics and plants. Surrounded by the greenery, you can help yourself to vegan donuts and nestle yourself in one of the cosy corners to read a magazine or simply have a chat with a friend.

CARRER DE BADAJOZ, 95, 08005, BARCELONA. WWW.ESPAIJOLIU.TUMBLR.COM

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DINNER T I M E AT

THE GREEN SPOT Even if you’re not a fan of vegetables, chances are you will fall in love with something at this restaurant. In its own words, The Green Spot offers “veggies for veggies, veggies for non-veggies.” The menu hails everything from black pizza made with activated charcoal to fresh cold-pressed juices in every colour of the rainbow.

CARRER DE LA REINA CRISTINA, 12, 08003, BARCELONA. ENCOMPANIADELOBOS.COM/THE-GREEN-SPOT

THE WRITER: FERESHTA AMIR A freelance writer and brand consultant from London. Fereshta loves travelling and is currently based in Barcelona, where she’s exploring Spanish and Catalan cuisine, culture and lifestyle. Follow Fereshta and her sister Monica’s adventures on Instagram: @saffronsonder.

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Profile for GAYA Magazine

GAYA Magazine Jan/Feb 2019 - Hijab & Modest Fashion for today's Muslim woman  

New year...new issue! In this issue, we don't only take a dive into the latest and freshest in modest fashion but we explore a little brand...

GAYA Magazine Jan/Feb 2019 - Hijab & Modest Fashion for today's Muslim woman  

New year...new issue! In this issue, we don't only take a dive into the latest and freshest in modest fashion but we explore a little brand...

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