Monday, April 21, 2008

move over Barbie!

When I was at the store looking for a doll to buy Ivy for her birthday, I saw these:

Meet Jamila, her husband Jamil, her friends Sunayana and Kareema (I believe Sunayana is from India and Kareema from Ethiopia). I thought they were cute and worth posting to the blog since multiple people have asked about how everyone dresses here. I'm more comfortable taking a picture of dolls than real people. If you're curious (because I was), these dolls are actual knock off's of Fulla who is the "Barbie of the Middle East".

She comes wearing variety of modest "indoor clothes" and from what I saw, often comes with an abaya and head scarf. They even sell Fulla brand prayer shawls and prayer rugs for little girls. I like her, she has many friends, a couple children, she's stylish, modest, and her signature color appears to be pink!

As to the question of what people wear here- it's similar to the dolls up above, but I also see the "normal" clothes that Barbie is wearing in your toy store (although, I haven't seen anyone prancing around in an evening gown). I've seen everything from the Muslim women in full veil, head scarf, and abaya to Indian women in their saris to western women in tank tops and short shorts. No clothing standard is enforced (by the government anyway) and I like to think that many of the Muslim women here dress the way they do because of the love they have for their beliefs and their culture. I respect it a lot.

I don't know a lot of the "norms" as to when and where the women take off their coverings or at what age they start wearing the traditional clothing. I did see a handful of women at the beach the other night swimming in the water with their full black abaya and scarf. They appeared to be having a blast, I might add. AND, last night there was a woman on the treadmill next to me working out while wearing a colorful head scarf, long sleeves and long pants (covering everything but her hands and face).

And back to the dolls, this is from Fulla's website. I think I'll pick one up for Ivy someday. Want one for your little girl?


  1. Hey Toria,

    So we joined blogging finally! Its been so fun keeping up on people. Your blog is so adorable, and those kids!! Anyways, our blog is Hope you're doing well. Jaime

  2. Morality has finally arrived! O.K., so I know it's existed for the eastern people for quite some time, but I'd love for the west to adopt this idea! :) Yes, you're right, I need to post (document) pictures from our balcony. I've already taken them, but too lazy to find them among all the other pictures! One day, maybe in a year (that's how long it took me to post my apartment!) hahaha. Love your updates, keep em coming!

  3. Hey, nice touch with the side bar clock! Good to know what time it is for you. :)

  4. I love it! Toria, now that is what I want to see, a taste of the culture, I think I'd feel the same as you, there is a definite respect for people who live their religion. Okay so when you come home I want a doll, so cute and sweet, and I love what she stands for! I'm sure you'll make a great Young Women's lesson out of this someday!

  5. Now we need Molly, the Mormon Barbie. I guess you can get BYU Barbie but that's hardly the same thing since her skirt barely covers her bottom :)
    Okay, you and me, St. George, 2009. If you have to fly back from Dubai to make it happen, so be it. If you're pregnant, you can ring a cowbell for me at mile 24. Or knowing you, you could still beat me running, even 8 months pregnant :)

  6. I collect Barbies, maybe I should start collecting the FUllA ones...they seem allot more modest and quality principles For Dacie. I think it is kind of FUN to see!

  7. My girls loved the dolls. We checked out Fulla's website and my girls wanted all of it!

  8. I am LOVING!!! your adventures. It makes me actally want to go crazy and live abroad liek JEff wants to do. The doll is awesome!! We banned Barbie's at our house b/c Taylor dubbed them "hoochiemama's" when she saw them at the store. You are giving me the courage to get out of CA and really see the world by living there.