Chic the Jewish way? A new online retailer, FunkyFrum.com, sells a compilation of "Modest Clothing for Modern Women." The site provides an
e-solution for Modern Orthodox women who can't find appropriate clothing at their local mall.
"The Internet is far-reaching and provides our customers with accessibilityâ€”no matter where they live," says Rachel Lubchansky, creator of the site.
Lubchansky, a newly Modern Orthodox Jewish woman, thought up the store when she moved back to her hometown of St. Louis and found a lacking in fashionable yet modest apparel in the local mall.
"I feel there is a need for a store like this especially today where we feel very torn between our modern and religious worlds," says Sy Syms Junior Michal Minkowitz. "We want to stay with our Jewish roots but we still want to be involved the contemporary world of fashion."
After a year of preparation, Lubchansky launched the site this August with a small collection of clothing from designers including French Connection, Hazel, Kenzie Girl, Three Dots and XCVI Wearables.
Although there is a small amount of merchandise, Lubchansky plans to expand the site to include petite and plus-size clothing. "Many have requested larger size options, so we are responding to that need for stylish merchandise within the market of plus-sized, curvy women," said Lubchansky.
Currently knee-to-floor length long skirts in both casual and fancy styles dominate the site. Shirts are also a strong presence. They range from simple layering staples to more ornate tops with jewel accents. The "Sets" section of the site sells three suits which are a Modern Orthodox-friendly trend this fall.
"The clothes seemed really good for fall. Some skirts would work really well for the cool weather we have been having," says Anne Harris, a senior at New York University. "I am from St. Louis. For people who live there it's hard to find the clothes they have in New York. It's nice that the site has that type of clothing."
Lubchansky updates the clothing monthly. Recently she added a piece titled "West Side Story," which comes in a long style perfect for winter. Another recent addition, "Meet me in St. Louis," is a ruffled cardigan which gives the wearer a romantic, pretty look. A piece named "1776" constitutes the only coat in the store. It evokes a stylish bohemian look in plaid and velvet. A skirt titled "Little Women" should be called "Joseph's Technicolor dream skirt." It has cascading tiers of blue, green, orange, red and purple which make it an original must-have piece.
The clothing ranges from costing $12 to $150. Currently, The FunkyFrum.com t-shirt is the best selling piece and the cheapest at $12.
Funky Frum proves that fashion doesn't discriminate against the Orthodox community. Lubchansky has created a site that proves that style and modesty can co-exist.
The Yeshiva University Observer, New York