Wednesday, November 27, 2013

When in Saudi Arabia, do as the Saudi Arabians do!

In preparation for my trip, one of the first things I knew I needed was traditional Islamic dress. In Saudi Arabia, all women are required to wear an abaya and a hijab in public places.
  • An abaya is a loose fitting dress, traditionally black, that is worn in public often over other clothes. 
  • A hijab is a scarf worn over the head, covering the hair.
Wearing these clothes won’t be a problem for me. Just another adventure! As the date of my trip closes in, I received the specifics from the NCUSAR on what our escorts wanted us to wear. We were requested to wear a black abaya (but we are allowed to have patterns or trim on it) and our hijabs could be any color.

Time to go shopping!

There is everything from traditional,

To modern,


The variations didn’t stop there. The classic black hijab has been transformed with colors and styles,


A random Google search led me to eastessence.com. This is probably the most reasonably price website I found. I was immediately drawn to the outfit below. It’s a traditional black with a little sparkle! I need a little sparkle with my abaya and hijab!

And for $37.99 for the abaya and the hijab, I think it’s a deal! I also have a plain black abaya to wear on less fancy occasions with multicolored scarves.

With the hijab, you can do a couple of things. One, you can buy a one-piece hijab that is one solid color that will fit securely over your head.

Two, you can buy a “cap” in any color (I have plain black) that will go on your head like a headband and hold down your hair. Then you can pin any scarf you want over it. Finally, a chance to wear all those pashmina’s I buy on the streets of NYC!

Now I will be traveling near the Gulf and Red Sea and I’m wondering if there will be a chance for swimming (in a gender segregated beach, I assume). If that’s the case I will have to buy one of these beauties. A burqini!

Just another pre-trip adventure for this girl! xoxo Maddy

— Madalyn Goss is a junior political science major with a Middle Eastern Studies minor.

Photos courtesy of www.eastessence.com. #BUAbroad #HuskyUnleashed #CoCurricularLearning


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