My name is Manal and I’m the face behind Hello Holy Days! I love making crafts and I host a lot of parties. I used to watch way too much HGTV for a 10-year-old kid and as a 15 year old, while my peers were busy subscribing to teen magazines, I was subscribing to home decor magazines (and implementing all the party and entertaining tips I found inside them.) When I was in my last year of high school and trying to figure out what I wanted to do with my life, I knew I had to follow my passion.
So I started building my career working at lifestyle magazines while attending the University of Toronto for a degree in Architectural History, focusing on Islamic Art and Architecture. I first worked at Canada’s largest women’s magazine, Chatelaine, in the Home Department. I helped out with photo shoots of homes, made DIY crafts for holiday stories and helped prop sets for TV segments. After my time at Chatelaine, I worked at another one of my favourite magazines, Canadian House & Home, where I worked on the digital side of things and prepared content for their website.
I started crafting for Muslim holidays because – well, I celebrate them. Editors liked my ideas and I’m thrilled to say that now we’re beginning to get some representation in mainstream media for them. Currently, I’m a freelance craft stylist for magazines. After I was introduced to the team at marthastewart.com with my Ramadan and Eid crafts last year, this past Easter I joined Martha Stewart Living’s team as a digital contributor. You can see my crafts for them from Easter onwards here.
I’d love to hear from you about some of the struggles you face trying to make Muslim holidays festive in your home. Please take my survey and let me know how I can help make these holidays easier for you.
To get in touch, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.