Tag Archives: chill

My “Sweatpants”

Some days even I don’t feel like spending a lot of time dressing up. Whether for oversleeping and having to get out quickly, studying on campus on a Saturday (that was the case with the following outfit), or going grocery shopping, every girl needs a quick and chill clothing option. And for myself (since I’m allergic to conventional sweatpants) my alternative is the abaya. 50 times better looking than sweatpants, it is just as – or even more – comfortable. Here’s a chill Saturday OOTD featuring an abaya from Bukhnuk.

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Self Care Time

Sharing my apartment with a social work student for two years taught me one very important thing: self care is absolutely necessary. Thus, following my ex-room mate’s constant advice, I had a very chill Friday consisting of a facial and some healthy comfort food.¬†Obviously, such a day must involve a comfy outfit and although sneakers are not my go-to type of foot wear, for this purpose they are almost obligatory.

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The facial lasted for about an hour and a half and at the end I got a little bored. Thus; selfie time. Although selfies and I don’t go well together (after all I’m a style blogger, not a face blogger), I do the occasional ridiculous one to send to people close to me (Snapchat yo!). So this is one of those, just because the person dared me to post it. Scary, huh?

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What I’m wearing: headscarf: H&M, multi-patterned infinity scarf: ASOS, pleated back chiffon shirt: Urban Outfitters, sequin khamsa tank top: New Look, baggy pastel pants: New Look, sneakers: ASOS, watch: MODA Style First

 

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Flowers and How to Love Cairo

This is sort of neat: one day I wore a flower print jumpsuit, the next day I found and posed with a bush looking pretty much the same as the other day’s print in one of Cairo’s tiny and random public gardens (small reasons for happiness, as you soon will learn). As you all probably know, Cairo is far from the greenest city in the world. Crowded, dusty, and noisy, with packed streets running crisscross between faded behemoths of apartment buildings, it is quite an overwhelming place for many a visitor, and an occasional pain for residents and returning enthusiasts. Still, Cairo remains my favorite city in the world. It is mine. It has soul. I wouldn’t trade it for the beauty of Barcelona, the hipness of Istanbul, nor the relatively organized-ness of gridded US cities like Chicago or New York.

Of course, surviving and coming to love the city is a matter of attitude. To be happy here, you need to adjust your expectations, learn to chill, and adopt a positive outlook. Yes, the city can be an eyesore in broad daylight; learn to appreciate the full potential of its splendor by night – the closer to sunrise the better, as you will have the city almost all to yourself. Cruise across the full extent of an empty 6th of October bridge as the night turns to dawn with some Oum Kalthoum playing in the background to fall in love with the city anew (I did this last Ramadan – traveling from a sohoor gathering in El Dokki after fagr to my place in El Rehab felt almost magical).

Stuck in the infamous Cairo traffic? Observe the various and highly creative forms of non-verbal communication you will not encounter the likes of anywhere else but here. Let your thoughts fly. Read a book. Call a long lost friend. There are many solutions to such a problem. And if you are suffocating from the pollution and noise, you need not look far for an escape. Get on a faluka (boat) from El Maadi (the non-motorized, quiet one) with snack and good friends, enjoy the priceless view and impeccably chill music in Sequoia at the edge of Zamalek overlooking/being surrounded by the Nile, or even better in my opinion (and waaay cheaper), pay five geneih (less than a dollar) to enter Al Azhar park at night (a true oasis in the middle of the city), grab a to-go cup of tea from the outdoor coffee shop, sit on the grassy hill overlooking parts of the city, and talk or reflect while listening to the taraweeh prayers of a hundred mosques (in Ramadan, that is).

 

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Learn to enjoy the simple things you may encounter in the city. Did the taxi driver actually give you the exact change back, including halfs or quarters? What a pleasant surprise! Particularly green gardens in between buildings and cars (like the one above) are to be appreciated. Stores that close at 11 or midnight? Yes, please. Oh, and perhaps the most missed aspect, according to friends who go back and forth or who end up leaving; anything and everything can be delivered to you. At almost any point of the day or night. Groceries, medication, or Mac Donalds at your doorstep? Why, of course. There are a plethora of other small issues to jump with joy over, of course, but I’ll let you discover those on your own (let me know if you already did – what is there to love about Cairo?).

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Scarf: Vida Hijabs (check out their Facebook page here), ethnic patterned kimono cardigan: Zara, leopard print top: Indiska (Norway), maxi skirt: Stradivarius, accessories: ASOS, Ebay.

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Scarf: Ebay, neck scarf: H&M, oversized shirt: Bershka, tropical flower print jumpsuit: Mango, ethnic black and white belt: River Island, accessories: Icing, River Island.

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The ’80s Glasses

This may or may not be the last post I write from Oslo this time around. I’m leaving Norway behind Sunday as I head to Granada, Spain, for what I anticipate to be a quite enriching scholarly program,¬† Dialogo Global’s Critical Muslim Studies: Decolonial Struggles, Theology of Liberation and Islamic Revival. The two-week trip shall be wrapped up with a weekend in Barcelona, insha’ Allah.

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This is just going to be some gushing over finally getting to wear these insanely cool vintage ’80s sunglasses I snagged from my mother’s closet of treasures at the beginning of my stay. I felt cool. They would have been even better with a turban style, though, so I need to make sure that happens in Spain sometime. Otherwise my outfit is really chill: I was visiting a dear friend of mine outside the city and I needed something to lounge around in while still looking presentable. Jersey is the thing for such a purpose, and if you want to be just as comfortable as I was, you should head to H&M asap and grab this cheap baggy skirt with pockets. I’m loving it.

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Aztec print scarf: Bikbok (Norway), pleated back chiffon shirt: Urban Outfitters, tribal print mash-up peplum top: Bikbok (Norway), jersey maxi skirt (H&M), bag: Guess, studded gladiator sandals: River Island, accessories: vintage from mom’s closet, Yemen.

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Midwest Mood

My apologies for the lack of posts the last few days: I was celebrating the end of the semester with a long weekend in another Midwest middle-of-nowhere city, Columbus, Ohio, where I did typical Midwestern things such as hitting the local malls, eating ice cream, barbecuing (or rather hash w nash; after all, a Palestinian was responsible for it), and otherwise bumming around and spending time with some of my dearest friends from my undergrad days (you know, back when I had time to be social). We also did less all-American things such as dabkeh, group karaoke to North African hits sans mic, and dropping birthday cakes on the floor (love you guys; you never fail to entertain me) .

The weather was quite acceptable, but has since then cooled quite a bit and so I could wear medium light clothes without being too cold. Loose, baggy, and comfy outfits were king as I enjoyed a couple of lazy days to the max. Things shall definitely sharpen up in time for New York.

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Raiding the local Forever21 (and H&M) is a must when one is stuck in smaller cities in the Midwest without European chains such as Zara, but why is it always burning hot inside? Guess which pieces I ended up with?

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(What I’m wearing: Head scarf: Mohajababes, neck scarf: Gina Tricot (Norway), leather jacket: Pitaya, tribal fringe top: River Island, pleated jersey maxi skirt: Unique Hijabs, bag: Forever21, spiked peep toe heels: River Island, accessories: Icing, ASOS, River Island, Ebay)

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(What I’m wearing: Hijab: Unique Hijabs, neon kimono: H&M, washed out graphic tank: H&M, acid wash dungarees worn as jeans: River Island, bag: Forever21, holographic flats: Forever21, accessories: Icing)

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