I believe many of you are already aware of the LBC’s reality show: Mission Fashion. A competition between young Arab designers as well as Arab models, all under the supervision of the extremely talented Lebanese Designer Elie Saab and a group of professionals.
Now I must admit Iâ€™m no big fan of reality TV. But sometimes I watch out of curiosity or when I have nothing to do. One day I tuned to LBC and got to watch an episode of Mission Fashion. Ever since then, I got really addicted and tried to watch it as often as I can.
The reason of my addiction was a contestant: Soulafa.
This Saudi lady designer. I really watch the whole thing just for her sake. Why? Because this woman is a physical display of the word challenge.
Coming out of the extremely conservative community of Saudi Arabia that gives women still few rights compared to other Muslim societies, makes it really hard to participate in such a show as simple as that.
For a woman from that society to take part in a reality TV, is something out of question to so many, now, not only is she taking part in any reality TV, but a fashion show. And it doesnâ€™t stop here, sheâ€™s also a mother of a little baby whoâ€™s totally dependant on her and who accompanies her throughout the whole show.
So this Soulafa is:
1. In a Reality show.
2. Within A fashion competition.
3. Being a designer and a mother at the same time.
4. In a mixed environment.
5. Wearing the very conservative Saudi Islamic clothing (all black, and covering the face) every second of the show.
Now regardless of the fact that Iâ€™m totally against this rather extremist Islamic clothing (I don’t believe Muslim women should wear only black and cover their faces), but still, I canâ€™t but admire her courage for taking part in this show. Itâ€™s really not as easy as many may think. On one hand, her society must have many who are against her and who might even consider her a rebellious woman who broke the Saudi taboos. On the other hand, it must be really difficult to stick to her Islamic clothing while being surrounded by models wandering around in mini-skirts and sleeveless shirts all the time.
And sheâ€™s really doing GREAT! Sheâ€™s being up to the challenge in all ways and her designs are improving by the day. I just love watching her succeed and go on in this show, because she really proves that being a strict Muslim doesnâ€™t contradict with being a successful member of society in any field that does not require breaking the Islamic rules.
I congratulate her, and the LBC for having her, and most importantly, I congratulate her husband who supported her and stood by her side till she got to this level.
Soulafa is a source of pride to Muslim women in general, and Saudi ones in specific.