Modesty: More than just clothing

Yocheved Nadell uses her fashion design and illustration skills to enrich girls' ideas of modesty

Tags: Life Lessons
Judy Simon ,

Teaching Girls: Modesty can be Chic, Stylish, Cool!
Teaching Girls: Modesty can be Chic, Stylish, Cool!

Why does a successful fashion designer and illustrator choose to drop her career and move to Israel, becoming religious?

Why would a mother become completely appalled by her daughter's coloring book?

What comes up when trying to look for material for teaching others to draw faces?

Meet Yocheved Nadell, who was born in South Africa, grew up in California, made Aliyah from New Jersey, and now lives in Beit Shemesh.

A fashion designer by profession, she was raising her beautiful family in Israel, in an environment infused in Torah, when she realized that there were no outlets for modest fashion creativity available for her daughters.

Most options for design books, even for young girls, included not just immodest clothing, but unrealistic body proportions and seductive poses. Even faces were wearing smirky expressions, and the innocent sweetness that children in her community shined from was sorely missing.

While doing research for her dream project, a design sketchbook made with modesty and fashion in mind in equal measures, Yocheved discovered that many teenage girls in her community had a skewed view of what modesty actually meant. "I thought that to be modest, you had to be ugly!" a number of teens informed her.

The view of fashion being either sexy or ugly, with no in-between, was disturbing. "I realized," she says, "that modesty itself needed a PR job!" Yocheved had her work cut out for her.

With two books out and a third on the way, the Adina's Design series is extremely successful in a variety of markets. In addition to really cool and chic fashion ideas, it includes clear guidance for making patterns, such as leopard print, for drawing faces, and for real, normal body proportions. There are stickers, accessories and pages and pages of ideas for kids to be creative on their own. "I wanted girls to realize that they could be modest in a dignified way; they could be trendy and chic, and feel proud of who they are! Each individual has a unique and personal style, and it's not about showing skin, it's about showing dignity."

Tune in to meet a woman who is passionate about her work, and using her G-d-given talents to guide, educate and beautify girls of all ages!

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