It’s Shabbat fashion, but not as we know it

By Marcus Dysch, August 2, 2012
Stamford Hill sharpshooter?

Stamford Hill sharpshooter?

Is it a cowboy? Is it a samurai? Is it Indiana Jones? No, it’s a Chasid.

The latest design on Israel’s catwalks may be better suited to a Hollywood movie set than a Friday-night walk to shul in Stamford Hill.

The “frum fashion” is a new creation by Aner Shevach, a student at the Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design in Jerusalem.

Mr Shevach uses materials including silk, cotton, linen, cashmere and leather to create his silk and wax print outfits.

While reviews of the design may be mixed, Mr Shevach’s explanation of the sentiment behind the project is likely to unite consumers and critics alike — in complete bemusement.

He said: “It is an allegory for man’s search for his cultural and social roots, as a way of delineating his future paths. The project is embodied by a nomadic Jewish family, searching its way to the utopia of Jerusalem.

“Their garments testify to both their point of departure and the road; the point of departure draws on elements from traditional Jewish clothes — like the separation of upper and lower body, head cover that indicates devoutness and tailored aesthetics — combined with nomadic tribal attributes that join into a characterisation of their eternal journey.”

The 27-year-old designer said his work had been influenced by the time he spent studying traditional hat-making in Jerusalem’s strictly Orthodox Mea Shearim district.

He hopes to study fashion in Paris or London and eventually create his own fashion house.

Last updated: 2:31pm, August 2 2012