Your cart is empty.

America's Islamic Clothing and Books Shopping Site - Worldwide Shipping

15 May '16

Muslim Wedding

Posted by Priyanka S in Islamic culture

A Muslim marriage and subsequently a Muslim wedding is a weaving together of families, of two souls, and of two destinies. It is considered as a big and very auspicious occasion in all cultures of the world. Different cultures have different wedding traditions and ceremonies, and every culture has its own treasure of wedding ceremonies, wedding customs and rituals.

Weddings in various Muslim countries follow their respective cultural traditions. Some are more Islamic while others have adopted norms that are in the values of various cultures. Various cultures have introduced more ceremonies in the Muslim marriage and matrimonial process.

Brides are decorated and beautified in various ways for weddings. For example, in the Indian subcontinent (India, Pakistan and Bangladesh) traditions, Mehndi or Henna as it is called, has a great significance. The brides are decorated both on the bride's hands and feet. In some Middle Eastern countries such as Morocco, the has a ceremonial bath a few days before the wedding and is decorated with henna and jewelry. Other countries vary in their celebrations of weddings.

Most weddings in Islamic and Arab cultures could become very expensive affairs. Hundreds and sometimes thousands of guests are not unheard of. Large spaces or hotels are rented to accommodate such a large gathering of guests. The bride is also decorated with very expensive jewelry. 22K gold is quite common that includes bracelets, ear rings, and jewelry for the head (worn over the wedding shawl).

Families that are more conservative Islamically usually avoid such lavish weddings as it is considered an unnecessary expense. More prefer instead to pay the amount to the bride and the groom to help them start their family.


                               EGYPT                                              INDONESIA                                                IRAN


                            MALAYSIA                                           MOROCCO                                                OMAN


                            PAKISTAN                                             TUNISIA                                                  TURKEY

10 May '16

Muslim Weddings Traditions in Iran

Posted by Priyanka S in Islamic culture

Although the majority of the population of Iran subscribe it Islam and it is located in the Middle East, the people of Iran can trace their ancestry back to ancient Persian lines. Persian, rather than Arabic, is the dominant language, and many of the customs retain elements of Persian Zoroastrianism. Although the sacred parts of the wedding ceremony, such as the reading of religious passages, are now conducted in the traditional Muslim way (with readings from the Quran as well as blessings such as the Kitbah), there are many aspects that still reflect ancient Iranian heritage.

Expensive weddings and mass weddings

Weddings in Iran are very expensive affairs; and there are more weddings in the countryside than there are in rural areas, even though those living in cities tend to have more economic security.

Iranian weddings are meant to be very public celebrations, taking place in front of as many people as possible. Bride prices are perhaps higher in Iran than in any other Muslim country; they are so high in fact that to many, they are almost prohibitive. The cost for a bride includes not only gifts for her and her family, but also the entire cost of the reception, which as mentioned is typically very large and very long.

In order to offset these costs, many Iranian couples are no longer having the traditional large ceremony, instead electing the Muslim equivalent of eloping (the marriage is still blessed by the imam, but there is no contract. This is usually very hard on the bride, who must bear the wrath of her parents). Another way in which Iranians are offsetting the cost of nuptials is by getting married in a ceremony involving two, three, or more other couples. This way, the costs are shared by all.


Both ceremony and reception take place at the house of the bride’s parents. The ceremony is started when the guests begin arriving.

The Persian ceremony includes the ceremony itself (Aghd) and the reception of three to seven days (Jashn-e Aroosi). There is a very elaborate floor spread set up for Aghd, including several kinds of food and decorations (Sofreh-ye Aghd), all with a significance of their own. The spread is set up so that faces east towards the light:

Spread.The elaborate cloth placed underneath the set up on the floor is passed down from mother to daughter. It is made of expensive cashmere, satin, or silk, and is embroidered.

A tray of herbs and spices. There are seven different elements on this tray, each with a different color. The herbs and the colors are said to ward off evil spirits.

Mirrors and candles. A mirror is placed in front of where the couple will sit, with two candles on either side. This arrangement again symbolizes light, and the candles unity. The bride sits down veiled but then removes the veil, and so the first thing a groom sees at the table is a reflection of his bride.

Fertility symbols. Several types of nuts in shells as well as eggs are placed on the spread to symbolize the wishes of a fertile union.

The Quran. A copy of the Quran is opened to the middle and placed in the center of the spread. A prayer rug and prayer kit is also placed on the center of the spread.

Coins and various sweets. A bowl of coins is used to bring wealth, and there are several sweet pastries that represent the sweetness of the new life and also to share with guests.

During the ceremony, the bride and groom often have the sugar from special sugar cones shaved off by guests and onto their heads. This is thought to bring good fortune, as well as representing a wish that their new life will be filled with joy (sweetness). The bride will keep these cones as souvenirs and for good luck.


04 May '16

The Culture of Yemen

Posted by Priyanka S in Islamic culture

Yemen Culture Overview

The population of Yemen is ethnically Arabic dominated by Sunni Muslims of the Shafi'i School and Shi'a Muslims of the Zaydi School. There are also small groups of Jews, Hindus, and Christians. Islam is the religion of the state. However, the constitution provides religious freedom to the followers of other religions. Conversion of a Muslim to another religion is prohibited. Non-Muslims cannot hold any elected office in the state and the constitution proclaims that Shari'a is the source of legislation.

Arabic Language

Yemenis speak Arabic. The different dialects of Arabic typical to the six cultural zones are used in daily life. Certain south Arabian languages like Mehri, Soqotri, and Bathari are also seen among certain sections of the population. Russian is understood in certain parts of the country. Though English is taught in private and public schools, only Arabic is predominantly used for communication. Some schools even teach French. The number of people who can speak English in Yemen is small compared to other Arab countries.

Yemeni Foods

For breakfast, Yemenis generally have a sweet strong tea with breads made of wheat, barley or sorghum. The most common dinner is a porridge prepared from fenugreek seeds served hot in a stone or clay bowl, consumed along with meat, eggs, herbs, spices and vegetables. Apart from sorghum, lentils and peas are the traditional staple food of the country. Boiled meat from goat or sheep served on heaps of rice is popular during feasts and celebrations. Fruits and raisins are consumed as desserts. During the recent days, poultry, fish and dairy products are becoming popular. Qat is a narcotic bush, like the coca plant. Over 90 percent of the population chews qat for more than five hours a day.

Islamic Clothing of Yemen

Participating in the popular tradition of the Middle East, the people of Yemen too cover their heads with thob or shiwal. However, the costume style varies considerably between the north and the south. In some regions, the thob worn is full and flowing, whereas in some others, it is slim fitting. Twisted and tweaked natural color braid is tacked on to the base cloth. The costlier versions of the same consist of silver works on the chest, shoulders and panels. The cotton thob dyed black with indigo is decorated with embroidery. A majority of women living in Yemen wear an all-encompassing black cloak called Balto. A very few walking on the streets may show their faces, while the rest prefer to cover it. Wearing black cloaks has even influenced foreign women living in Yemen.

Yemeni Social Life

The 1994 constitution of Yemen has granted equal rights to women. However, outside the family, gender disparities are visibly seen in the society. The conservative religious authorities strongly recommend segregation of sexes. In urban centers, women are employed in educational and health care sectors. The cultural values of Yemen include decency, hospitality and respect for elders. The holy text of Koran has become one with the life of Yemenis. The familiarity of people with Koran is versatile that, one would see them profusely quoting from it in day-to-day affairs.

04 May '16

The Culture of Afghanistan

Posted by Priyanka S in Islamic culture

Afghanistan Culture Overview

For a long period in history, Afghanistan has been ravaged by invasions, civil wars and terrorist activities. This atmosphere has disrupted and overturned much of the country’s social and cultural traditions. However, during these days, one sees the resuming of a settled life and a return to tradition as a great number of refugees are returning home. The society of Afghanistan is dominantly of tribal origin. Therefore, tribal affiliation pre-dominates the people’s sentiments than the sense of nationhood.

Since the Arab-Muslim conquest, Islam has become the common religion of all the tribal groups and has largely influenced the culture of the land. However, different regions of the country have their own unique traditions. This accounts for the multi-cultural and multi-lingual character of the nation. About 99 percent of the people practice Islam, 80 percent of them being Sunnis and 19 percent of them being Shi'as. Apart from this, one sees the existence of other traditions such as Pshtunwali, Baha'i faith, Buddhism, Hinduism, and Zoroastrianism. Mullahs or the male members of the religion who can recite Quran from memory are considered as the most important religious figures in Afghanistan.

Afghani Foods

The wide and varying landscape of Afghanistan aids the growth of a range of crops in Afghanistan. The cuisines of Afghanistan are largely based on cereals like wheat, maize, barley and rice. Afghan grapes are among the most popular in the world. Some of the notable dishes of the land are Palau; Kofta or meatballs; sweet pumpkins; Aush or handmade noodles; Gosh feel or pastries; sweets like halwa and jelabi; Khajoor; a type of meat dumplings called mantu; Afghani bread; the traditional rice dish called Qabuli Palav; sabzi; Afghani soup called Shorba, and rice pudding called Shir Berenj.

Islamic Clothing of Afghanistan

The traditional Afghan clothing for men includes a Pakol (hat), Lungee (turban), and a Chapan (coat). However, this varies by province and with ethnicities. Most traditional women of Afghanistan wear a long dress with round skirt slightly similar to a "salwar kameez." Afghan style of dressing is unique and typical to the land. The pants worn by Afghans are loose, but at the end, they are clasped close to the ankles. Often, the dress of Afghanis combines several colors often representing the color of the flag. Women wear the burqa, abaya, and hijab, which fall in line with the traditional Muslim Clothing and Islamic Clothing attire worn by Muslims in other countries.

Social Life of Afghans

Extended family life is the central feature of Afghan’s social life. Family is a caring and responsible unit vested with the power to make decisions from schooling to marriage for all the members. Total dependence to family structure is strikingly contrasted with a striking sense of independence. In other words, Afghans are seen hostile to any external force including the government interfering in family affairs.

Afghanistan National Sports

The national sport of Afghanistan is Buzkashi, or polo, an ancient rough and tumble game, played with the carcass of a goat or cow.

Afghan Literature

Though each of the ethnic groups of Afghanistan has unique cultural traits, there are certain things that are common to national life like love for poetry. People recite poetry during all types of gatherings. Ability to compose and recite poetry is greatly adored in Afghan culture.

04 May '16

Islamic Culture

Posted by Priyanka S in Islamic culture

Islamic Culture

Islamic Culture refers to the customs and traditions that Muslims have adopted in their respective countries including the Islamic / Muslim Clothing they wear, foods they eat, wedding traditions and other such aspects of their Islamic Life.


Culture of Afghanistan                        Culture of Yemen