May 4, 2011

The Underground Scoop on Tzniut Style

I try really hard not to contact awesome retailers for product samples, because, well, I feel like it cheapens the whole experience. But when retailers contact me with beautiful, tzniut products, I can't turn them down, and I never have! Thus, I'm excited to share with you a retailer that I've been hoping and praying would contact me for some time now (ever since I moved into Teaneck and heard about it, that is), and that is The Style Underground, the fine purveyors of innovative, classic, and modest hairwear and headgear. Julie at TSU contacted me and sent me two amazing products: A Purple Yoshi Braid Hat and the Luxe Silk Voile Scarf.

I'll admit it -- when the package came, it was small and well wrapped, and I was concerned. Will her products fit my gigantic German noggin? Yes, I have a big head, and it's always caused me woe and drama when it comes to buying hats, which is why I don't really wear hats outside of winter when slouchy, knit hats are oversized and comfortable. If I had my way, I'd wear comfy hats all year round, so consider me stoked to discover that TSU makes a comfortable, stretch-cotton hat, called the "Yoshi Braid Hat."

The Yoshi Braid Hat is what it says -- it's soft, cotton, and stretchy, but without that "you wore it once and now it's stretched out" kind of feeling. It was comfortable, looked like a tichel (according to Tuvia), and it provided versatility, as the braid is attached in the back but is able to be moved around on the crown of your head. I was incredibly excited the moment I put it on -- I felt like summer wouldn't be so bad after all! My only concern is that, because my noggin is so big, the hat doesn't look exactly like it does on Julie on her website. It's just a little too snug to look casual. As Tuvia said, from the side I look like an elf. I tried to rectify the situation by pulling and tucking the extra fabric in, and it worked for the most part, but I noticed throughout the day that I did suffer some slippage of the hat because, well, of my gigantic head. (I know, I know, it doesn't look that big, but it is.) Overall, however, I'm super excited about the hat, and I'm excited to buy the other colors (especially the versatile black!).

The Luxe Scarf at first glance had me thinking that this wasn't anything special, but then I unwrapped it and ... holy wow ... it's shaped like a triangle! Which means there isn't gobs of extra fabric to try and tuck away, and it makes it easier to leave the part around the neck out without it reaching half-way down my back and making me look like a peasant. The fabric is incredibly lightweight and comfortable -- it honestly feels like I'm wearing nothing on my head, which is perfect in time for summer. The stitching on the scarf, too, is impressive. I can't use a sewing machine, let alone make something this elegant.

Overall, I have to say I am very, very impressed with what The Style Underground has to offer. I was taken aback at first by the prices, but after receiving the products, I can tell you that it is beyond worth it. The product is elegant, the stitching is expert and flawless, and the color options are innovative and seasonal. I'll be wearing these for years, and they won't show the wear, either. We're talking Boutique Tzniut, folks! And I'm sold.

Do you have a favorite The Style Underground scarf or hat? Let me know what you think!

EDIT: Don't forget to check out the invaluable resource of The Style Underground's scarf-tying videos on Facebook!


Emily said...

Super cute - Although I do agree that the hat does look a little elvish from the side. New fashion trend maybe?

Suburban Sweetheart said...

Pretty, pretty, both of them! I meant to tell you: I actually bought two things from the other day, including a tichel. Ha! I wear it during the day sometimes, on days when I'm feeling casual or, more honestly, days when I don't wash my hair... I also bought a turban. Love them both!

Mama H said...

I'd love to try their stuff too - i tend to shy away from hats as my head is hypersensitive some days, and even a lightweight scarf is too much on those days.

Is the hat something you can see yourself wearing all day long?

Melissa S-G said...

The Luxe Silk Voile Scarf is one of my favorites and a definite go-to when I need something that won't annoy me and I won't have to tie cute or futz with to look put together all day long! I also have a few of her braid hats, and my husband also feels they look elvish. I love them for running errands, babysitting, and other no-fuss activities.
Remember awhile ago when you were asking about headcoverings while working out? I wear a wicking hat from TSU that is similar to the Yoshi Braid Hat. Its the best ever!

A regular reader said...

Dude, Chaviva, have you lost weight? You look fantastic in those top photos! P.S. Happy soon-to-be wedding anniversary

T @ Gluten-Free Bay said...

I adore Julie's stuff. I don't cover my hair all the time but because my hair is thinning I wear hats and scarves frequently. I have a Yoshi hat and its precursor (can't remember what it's called) and I wear them a lot. I like to keep the heat really low in winter to save money, so I sleep in them! I also love how her scarves are mostly lined in non-slip material. They are so luxurious and elegant. Not like the cheap stuff I buy at CoverYourHair that falls apart. Really worth every penny. Plus you get to support an independent artisan, which is nice. You look great!

T @ Gluten-Free Bay said...

Mama H: I get migraines from tight headbands, etc, and the Yoshi hat is the best I've found. Doesn't give me problems whatsoever, it is snug enough to stay on but loose enough not to bother.

Batya said...

Lucky you!! You look great in those hats. I wish some hat/tichel seller would send me samples, too.

Chaviva Gordon-Bennett said...

@Emily Thanks! The elf thing might be in :)

@SuburbanSweetheart AWESOME! I used to do that before I got married and it was the thing to do. Sometimes, you just want to put your hair up and do your thing.

@MamaH I wore it all day, and I felt *zero* pressure -- even on my gigantic noggin. So, it's all good. Give it a try!

@Melissa I am sold. I just bought another Yoshi hat and another one of the scarves. Eeee!

@RegularReader I wish :) Thank you!

@T It is nice to know I'm supporting a local artisan and not a mass-producing scarf company. Her work is so dedicated. Love it!

@Batya Thanks. I bet she ships to Israel ...

Chava said...

Really nice! I'm a somewhat new reader who also wanted to give a shoutout -I'm a convert from Teaneck! :-)
Now I'm in Israel, though!

Mrs. Pom said...

I think maybe the braid hat doesn't fit you. I don't know it just looks weird. The scarf looks really nice.

{ T G L } said...

Hi Chaviva,

Nice to meet you and kol hakavod on a lovely blog.

I *love* the Style Underground! Do you know of a company called They are a Christian headcovering store and they do have some lovely stuff that Jewish married women could also wear.

Look forward to following your blog. Feel free to check mine out :)

Shabbat shalom,
This Good Life

Anonymous said...

The Curmudgeonly Israeli Giyoret says:

It is absolutely necessary to alter head-covering styles every couple of years. I know it's time when I make a few shopping runs and find that absolutely nothing grabs me.

The Yoshi hat looks fine, although it reminds me too much of the crocheted lined snoods I wore in a previous gilgul.

The scarf--is this some new type of material? From what you say, it doesn't slip. I had a traumatic experience as a newlywed with a lovely white silk triangular tichel I used to have. A waiter at one of my sheva brachot spilled gravy straight on it, and another time in a light wind, it slid off my head right in front of the rabbi's house.

There's a store on Strauss in Jerusalem, "Ohel Sarah" where the proprietress has a wide variety of things and a lot of good advice for new ideas. Scarves in triangles, squares, rectangles, whatever. She says her tying ideas come to her in her dreams. You should check it out when you come to visit.

For the last year or two, I've been into the multi-multi-color collection of berets originated by Parkhurst, although there are lots of cheaper makes that are often just as good quality. The main thing is getting exactly the right COLOR though. I'm enjoying that.

I passed most of my nice scarves on to my married daughter, who is good at tying and mixing. I find myself thinking, "My, that IS pretty. How did I get tired of it?"

I find myself perpetually amused by the huge multilayer wrapped turbans worn by some older American haredi immigrants. It reminds me of the Great Gazoo on the Flintstones. We used to refer to this as the Rebbitzen Hiney Head.

You do look like you've lost weight.

Chaviva Gordon-Bennett said...

@Chava For serious? We should connect sometime! Coffee at Lazy Bean? :)

@MrsPom Thanks for your honesty. I'm still feeling mixed about it. I might use it WITH a scarf, however. Stay tuned!

@TGL I haven't been to the site, but I will check it out! I'll give your blog a look, too! Thanks for reading.

@Anon/Giyoret I am SO going to check out that store. I will probably do some more looking while I'm there for things other than tichels, especially because I just discovered a store here that sells some amazing scarves for super cheap. I understand the ups and downs with head coverings ... somedays are a hat, some days are a tichel, somedays are ... AHHH!

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