These women are wearing the long black cloaks called abaya that all women in Saudi Arabia wear when out in public. The two women on the outside wear a type of overhead abaya, which is all one piece and very loose, revealing absolutely none of the female form at all. Most abayas that I've seen start at the neck and then the head scarf (hijab) is separate. Many Saudi women also wear the niqab (veil) over their faces - although it might just be my imagination, but I feel like I am seeing more and more women without the veil lately. The veil is not required by Islam. Abayas with embellishments and colors are seen more commonly now too. I wrote a post this past summer called "Embracing the Abaya" on my other blog, Susie's Big Adventure, with more photos of different abayas. CLICK HERE TO READ IT.
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