Did you know? That the mystic and elegant black abaya appeared during the Abbasid Islamic Period around the eighth century – it is the same black abaya that is symbolic and present in the Muslim world today.
As the story goes;
Some time in the eighth century, in the kingdom of Saudi Arabia, a poor merchant began selling cloaks: one in every color. One day, the merchant ran out of his colourful cloaks and was left with only black ones that no one wanted.
He felt despair, but the merchant remembered his noble poet friend and decided to visit him to ask for help. The poet composed a poem that praised the beauty and blessings of the woman who was seen dressed in a ‘mysterious’ black garment, mentioning that black was the colour worn by the rich and the noble.
When the women of the region heard the poem they flocked to the cloak seller leaving him rich and feeling richer and nobler!
Although reasons for wearing the abaya may vary slightly from one person to the next, the most compelling motivation stems from our religion; The primary purpose of wearing an abaya is to completely cover oneself so as not to expose any bodily attributes or beauty. The abaya serves as an identity and can also diminish divisions between social classes.
Modest fashion has transformed through history, yet kept its primitive essence of elegance, length, and style. Some of the trends and items that we are now exposed to, have been influenced and shaped by what women wore centuries ago. You can never be overdressed or underdressed in an elegant black abaya.