The general requirement regarding clothing is that, for both the male and female, it should be decent and respectable.
In some communities and countries, both males and females have the same outline of dress eg. in Pakistan the shalwar and khameese and the Middle East the thoub and jilbab, though they are usually worn in slightly differing styles and colours. Here in Britain there is a general consensus of what is male and female dress though, as in other countries, both wear similar outlines of dress though in different styles and colours.
For both women and men the fluctuation of fashion ensures that there are many high street shops with a wide variety of designs which allow you to fulfill the Islamic requirements without necessarily alienating yourself from your family and society by adopting cultural designs that perhaps will not look quite so comfortable outside their own particular community.
Men are not allowed to wear gold which is a beautification reserved for women as well as silk, except on medical grounds where other fibers are causing irritation to the skin.
At all times, both in private and public, both men and women are required to cover from the navel to the knee which is regarded as the private parts of the body referred to as the 'awrah.
Men are encouraged to wear a looser style of clothing which is available in the high street. It is all too evident that Muslims generally place more emphasis on women's dress and its strict observance and should perhaps be more aware of placing more importance on and adherence to their own.
Women tend to show caution in relation to their dress which should be modest and respectful and draw upon a wide variety of designs and styles to meet it.
In the home one may dress according to taste and style. While scarves are the traditionally accepted female head covering a woman, particularly a convert to Islam, may feel more at ease with a head covering which is more in keeping with the changing weather conditions or national dress like hats, berets, wraps etc.,
Saturday 18th of May 2013