Don’t wear red clothes or short skirts, ultra-orthodox rabbi tells Jewish women

Posted: Thu, 22 Sep 2016

Don’t wear red clothes or short skirts, ultra-orthodox rabbi tells Jewish women

In a letter sent to 5000 homes, an ultra-orthodox rabbi warned women in Stamford Hill not to wear "eye-catching" clothes, telling them to dress modestly, avoiding bright colours and short skirts.

The Jewish Chronicle reports that the letter, written by Rabbi Eliyahu Falk, was approved by the Union of Orthodox Hebrew Congregations.

It says that women should not wear clothes with an "unusual style as they would be eye-catching. Similarly, the clothes must not be red, a bright yellow or a fluorescent colour" which, the rabbi warned, could be "very eye-catching".

"Calm colours" were desirable, the Rabbi wrote, because "hot colours solicit attention".

He said that it was absolutely "essential" that clothes are not see-through, and cautioned that "many blouses and skirts manufactured nowadays are see-through to some degree".

To avoid this, women should only wear "such blouses … with the protection of a loose fitting shell or T-shirt".

Rabbi Falk said that "the length of a skirt or dress must extend until at least 4" (10cm) below the end of the knee." He said that this is "required because only with this additional length is one assured that the knees will remain covered even when running, sitting down, climbing stairs etc."

He added that it was an "absolute obligation" to dress modestly and that the "shape" of women's upper bodies should not be "apparent".

The rabbi then gave more detailed instructions about skirts, saying that women should make sure their "hips and thigs" were hidden and "camouflaged".

He said there was nothing more "wholesome and beautiful" than modesty and that women were privileged to have the "duty" of dressing "in a way that befits the precious Jewish woman and girl".

Dina Brawer, founder of the Jewish Orthodox Feminist Alliance said that the 'guidance' was controlling.

Tags: Clothing & Symbols, Gender Equality, Judaism