It can be easy to assume the hijab, a head covering worn by some Muslim women in the presence of adult males outside of their immediate family, is meant to be modest and purposefully to deter attention away from a woman’s beauty. But Verona Collection has partnered with Macy’s to launch a line of hijabs for women who want to practice their faith while still being fashion forward.
HuffPost Women reports, the partnership between the major fashion retailer and the Islamic boutique would result in an exclusive selection of products for Muslim and non-Muslim women. Products would include a variety of hijabs or headscarves, as well as modest tops, pants, dresses and abayas, a loose garment worn by some Muslim women.
Founder, Lisa Vogl recently expressed in a press release that the line is less about what makes women attractive to the world and more about fashion being a way to express individual identities:
“Verona Collection is more than a clothing brand.”
“It’s a platform for a community of women to express their personal identity and embrace fashion that makes them feel confident on the inside and outside.”
Vogl was a single mother when she started Verona after converting to Islam in 2011. She was inspired to start the line after recognizing modest clothing that was still stylish was hard to find and even harder to afford, for all women, not just Muslim women. Vogl’s fashion photography has appeared in The Daily Beast, Marie Claire and other publications and she believes it’s what gave her an advantage she needed to launch Verona Collection in February 2015. The company was a huge success taking on a huge number of global orders. In May 2016, Vogl opened one of the first Muslim women’s clothing stores in a mainstream American mall in Orlando, Florida.
Vogl’s chance at taking her line mainstream happened through “The Workshop At Macy’s”, a business development program that according to the company is intended to “give select high potential minority- and women-owned businesses the tools to better succeed and sustain growth in the retail industry.” Shawn Outler, an executive vice president at Macy’s expresses the company is focused on supporting minority-led business ventures:
“Through ‘The Workshop at Macy’s’, we want to nurture and support minority- and women-owned businesses to build their capabilities and become the next generation of retail partners.”
HuffPost reports with Muslim consumers being estimated to spend $464 billion on fashion and $73 billion on cosmetics globally by 2019, there has been a major shift within the fashion and beauty industries to reach out to Muslim consumers. Admittedly faith can complicate the process since so many religious practices directly speak to how beauty and display of one’s body is handled. Beauty giant L’Oreal recently hired Muslim beauty blogger, Amena Kahn as its first model to wear a hijab. Unfortunately Kahn stepped down days later amid backlash over a series of tweets she’d posted in 2014 that were critical of Israel.
Verona Collection is set to launch on Macy’s website on February 15.