Part II: Religious women
There are a number of ways the religious Jewish (married) women clothe themselves, but to my eye, the most evident way to tell apart certain groups of them is via their head coverings.
Their vestments are much less specific, with the exception that they are required to dress modestly. And by “modest,” that means their hair is covered, as is every inch of their bodies, too. Thus, at least slightly billowy dresses and skirts are the order of the day, as well as long sleeves, of course. Shoe wear varies; some wear slightly funky clog-ish items on their dogs; others wear the female equivalent of the Hasids’ tennies.
Again, it’s the headwear that distinguishes them, one from the other. (“Where’s the Religious Woman?” series would not be a success.)
Some of these women wear wigs. These human-hair items often are placed ever-so-slightly askew, such that they indeed look like wigs. For example, their parts are just too-too perfect. Their bangs don’t blow in a stiff wind.
Others wear turbans, in varying hues and they look to be silk. As opposed to Indian turbans that go wide, these go high.
Still others wear simply gorgeous wraps. They make it look like they have gracefully and artfully hidden within their many-colored wraps Rapunzel’s hair itself. And they may have. The religious teenage girls and young women who aren’t yet married wear their hair very long; it would take a lot of practice and long bolts of fabric to gather up all that hair to hide from the world outside the home.
“Be fruitful and multiply” is a Biblical phrase these folks take very seriously. Most of the younger (and some not very young anymore) religious women we saw were either pregnant, or pushing a stroller, or pregnant and pushing a stroller, or pregnant, pushing a stroller, and herding a gaggle of small children, or wearing babies in front packs while holding the hands of toddlers, or… you get it.