Inspirations, Fashion & Blogging: Happy Muslimah

I get a lot of my ideas, inspiration and fashion sense from my family and friends (and the internet) around me, plus it's always nice to have an honest sounding board to tell you what's hot and what looks stupid. I've turned the tables on a few of the 'expert' opinions I usually consult, and I've asked them to tell us what their own inspirations are, how they create their own styles, and the fashion trends they love.

First up, a guest post from my eldest sister (a.k.a veteran blogger of the family), Happy Muslimah, who runs several blogs of her own, (in between a busy life of work, kids and play). She'll be telling us what her inspirations are, as well as how to jazz up outfits with your own personal touch.
My little sister Kooks has asked me (Happy Muslim Mama) to do a guest post for her.  I think she should be careful, I have taken quite a shine to this blog and she might not get it back.
 Anyway, she got me to think about my style inspiration and what floats my boat aesthetically and garb-wise (as Juan Williams might put it).  This led to lots of messing around on Pinterest and Polyvore and creating an utter mess on my MS Paint.  My wardrobe staple is my abaya, or as I once heard it called “our version of the little black dress”.  I treat this as my blank canvas and dress up or dress down to suit the occasion.  This has allowed me to create a capsule wardrobe which is easy to manage and lets my plan my work wardrobe for the week very easily .
 1. The Goth / Elegant Look
 The first outfit is pretty much how I dress on weekends and for work.  I love anything Goth or Victorian-looking and I think the shapes go very well with the basic, plain abaya.  I am known by friends and teased by my sisters for the leopard print items that sneak into my wardrobe.  In order to avoid Bette Lynch’s style I stick to one piece with head to black for the rest – a pair of leopard prints heels or a print scarf usually does the job for me.  This is also the kind of thing I feel smart enough in for dinner with my better half.
2. Conservative / Work Wear
  Although the above usually covers work, occasionally I have to crack out my serious “workwear”, this is usually for interviews or meetings and my favourite colour for this is navy (otherwise brown or grey).  I tend to favour flats or medium-heeled pumps that will let me run around.  The mid-heel pair pictured are the ones I have at the moment.  I also tend to go for Fiorelli bags because they come in a size that lets you fit a folder in and are sectioned off to organise your stuff (and I manage to carry a lot of junk around and hate scrabbling around for things).

3. Colour & Pretty Styles
If I had my way I would wear nothing but Gothic-y black all the time, but colours seem to put people more at ease with the kind of clothing I wear, so I ration the black in between other colours, or at least break the black down with bright scarves, ballet pumps and accessories.  Most of my nice scarves are gifts from my mum, sisters, friends and surprisingly even sister’s friends, and the same goes for the shoes.  I accessorise with chunky rings, broaches and bracelets I make myself (as modelled by my daughter in the picture above).  These usually get picked for meeting friends, visiting with family and  for days I feel playful.  This look also often sneaks into my work wear as well.
Thank you for that look into your wardrobe, and a wonderful mix of styles, colours and accessories there are, I must say. I'm sure I'll be inviting you back soon for more ideas (and more posts) soon!

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