Q: Is it allowed to wear abayas with stones and embroidery fixed onto it? If it is allowed, up to what extent can it be adorned?
Haamidaw wa Musalliyaa
Beauty is supposed to be displayed in the home in the presence of the husband, children, and mahram relatives. It is not meant to be displayed in public. The beauty of a woman is a private treasure and not a public property to be enjoyed by one and all.
Thus, the purpose of the Abaya is to conceal the body and make one unattractive when emerging from the home. Needless to say, beautifying the abaya defeats the very purpose of the abaya.
The Qur’an commands that women should not even stamp their feet in a way that part of her beauty may be revealed. How can then it permit them to publicly adorn themselves with outer garments that are attractive or revealing? A hadith actually curses the woman who uses any type of perfume at a place where its fragrance would reach non-mahram men. Further, it categorically states that women should stay out of public view. When she leaves her home the shaitan looks for ways to tempt people through her.
Hence, abayas that have revealing features or any type of attraction are not only impermissible but they are shameful and a cause of fitnah and evil. May Allah protect us all.
However, if the Abaya is worn at home and only in the presence of other females or one's husband, then it could be beautified.
And Allah Ta'ala Knows Best
M Mangera (Mufti)