If you don’t think modesty can be cool, you’re wrong. The mainstream fashion world is about to get rocked by how chic modest clothing can be, with the help of two Hasidic Jewish women. Meet Mimi Hecht and Mushky Notik, recently profiled in the New York Times “Women in the World” feature.
The sisters-in-law founded Mimu Maxi together, which is a clothing line they run from Crown Heights, Brooklyn, because they were frustrated at the lack of affordable options for Hasidic women. They wanted to merge mainstream culture with their religious sensibility, Notik stating, “We keep the Sabbath, and we also love Beyonce.” That is pretty much the best sentence ever said in the English language.
So, what’s the difference between their designs and others? Mimu Maxi features billowy dresses in soft shades and skirt leggings in bright colors–definitely a deviation from the usual black shapeless skirts. While many of their patrons come from the Orthodox community, Notik and Hecht claim that half are actually not Jewish at all, indicating good fashion knows no bounds.
Hecht explains why the word “modesty” needs an update just as much as the clothing itself, which is why their Instagram account is open, funny, and conversational:
“We see the word—and hashtag!—‘modesty’ really growing and taking on speed with religious women. But then again, to non-religious women, the word ‘modesty’ sometimes sounds archaic, even ugly. We are doing our part to change that, to show that modesty can be beautiful, fun, even sexy.”
Notik added that she’s learned how others perceive religious people, and hopes to debunk some stereotypes, stating religious people “are fun, and funny, and open, and have the same struggles, and enjoy the same things as everyone else. That’s a big epiphany for some people.”
While we definitely don’t believe in policing what women wear (it’s all about choice!), it’s great to see more options for women who do wish to dress more modestly. Shopping spree, anyone?