The Jewish High Holidays are often characterized by traditional dishes and desserts, prayers and cultural events. But one thing that plays an equally important part is clothing.
Traditionally, people wear all-white attire to the synagogue and the dinner table on Rosh Hashanah, Sukkot and Passover, whether dresses, skirts or preppy blouses.
Many people, especially the younger generation, will likely purchase their holiday outfit from inexpensive mass-market brands such as Shein or Zara. But why not look toward Israeli-designed garments for your next purchase?
Usually, they are ethically made in Israel and are of good quality. You won’t have to discard the pieces after a few wears because they fell apart in the wash. And there are affordable options as well.
If you don’t know any Israeli brands worthy of your buck (or shekel), here’s a list of a few of them, with items good enough to don for the upcoming High Holidays.
Founded in 1973, Castro reached its corporate peak in 2013 when it was ranked Israel’s largest fashion company. Back then, the brand’s ambassador was an up-and-coming actress named Gal Gadot.
A lot has changed since then. The world of online retail and the introduction of more and more foreign brands to the Israeli market has pushed Castro down the pecking order. It is still, however, widely popular with the locals.
The items are designed in Israel and manufactured overseas in order to maintain a competitive advantage over fellow fast-fashion brands. But Castro offers a variety of styles and sizes, and has recently unveiled an entire collection dedicated to the High Holidays.
This brand is an anomaly on the local fashion market. Having been founded amid the coronavirus pandemic in 2020, it has managed to reach cult status in under three years. A host of Israeli celebrities, including Gal Gadot, have posted images of themselves on social media wearing the brand’s designs.
What’s unusual about Itay Brands is that its relatively low prices would make it eligible to be called a high street brand. However, the company makes it a point to emphasize that all the garments are made in Israel, and not in the Far East.
ATA was one of the first industrial enterprises founded in Israel, way back in 1934. It was the first company in Israel to manufacture and design textiles locally, and continued to grow until the 1970s. In 1985, the company was acquired by the Clal Industries investment company and rebranded as Golf & Co.
In 2016, businessman Shahar Segal and Yael Shenberger re-established the ATA brand. Since then, it has grown exponentially, acquiring a large following on social media and even boasting an army of celebrity fans.
The latest celeb to be seen wearing an ATA piece recently was Hollywood actress Drew Barrymore. And you could get yourself the exact same white shirt — with the word at (Hebrew for “you” feminine) on it — while it’s still in stock. Alternatively, you can grab yourself a pair of white cotton overalls and be done with the outfit search.
A graduate of Shenkar College of Engineering and Design in Ramat Gan, Orgad founded her label in 1999. Largely remaining under the mainstream radar, she managed to cultivate a devout following that has allowed her to maintain a market presence for over 20 years.
Orgad specializes in basics, offering an array of tailored pieces, including pants, blouses, dresses and accessories. The online retail site even has an outlet section where you can shop pieces from past collections at discounted prices.
Sabina Moyal Musayev and her partner, Meir Moyal, founded the brand in 2011. Musayev — another Shenkar alum – was born in Baku, Azerbaijan, where her family worked in the tailoring business for decades.
Her pieces are now stocked across some of the most popular, international, luxe fashion retail sites, such as Revolve and Farfetch. Musayev specializes in evening wear, with sequins and glitter aplenty in many of her designs.
Dodo Bar Or has to be one of the most successful designers to emerge from Israel in recent years.
Having established her eponymous brand in 2014, her collections are stocked across all major luxury retail sites. Her pieces are worn by a who’s who of the influencer world — including Chiara Ferragni, Leandra Medine, and Camille Charriere.
Bar Or’s price range is on the high end, with some items retailing for over $1,000. The garments, however, are the kind of investment pieces that will last in your wardrobe for years to come, or if you simply want to feel like you’re vacationing in the south of France.