Ketonet Pasim was founded by Avraham Ben Shalom in 2015, however, the concept of Ketonet Pasim began many years before. Avi's heart was awakened to wearing tzit-tzit in the deserts of Kuwait while serving in the United States military as an infantryman in the U.S. Marine Corps. Little did he know that not only would this moment be the impetus in returning back to his Jewish roots but would ultimately lead him back to this very commandment of wearing tzit-tzit and restoring what has been lost. Not long after getting out of the Marine Corps, Avi had an encounter with a fellow Jew he would never forget. One evening, he met a man who led the local Chabad and who invited him over to his home for dinner. Before he left, he gave him his first tallit katan. Another time, after returning home from work one night, he researched and worked for more than four hours in learning how to tie his own tzit-tzit.
As time moved on he began learning Hebrew, Torah and Tanakh, investigating and seeking to understand more of what he had not known before. It has been through this journey of learning that he found many interesting things concerning how we are to dress and wear clothing of which led him to uncover some biblical traditions that have been almost lost today. One of these traditions he found was that God desires us to wear a “ketonet pasim,” a garment known today in Arabic as “thobe” or “long tunic or robe.” When Avi came across this, he began searching through historical venues, Jewish history and many other sources that made it quite clear that this was indeed something that had been lost. He found that less than 100 years ago, Jews in Israel and all over the Middle East were very much wearing this garment. Aside from Arabs dressing this way, there is still a minority of Jews in Israel and the Middle East who still wear this garment today but, unfortunately, a small, insignificant few. After learning this, he came across another shocking realization in the Torah that the tallit was also not being made correctly today according to the halacha and specifications laid down by Moshe in the Torah at Mount Sinai. Both the tallit gadol and tallit katan today are not kosher nor fulfilling the commandment. It was then that Avi realized something needed to be done and he wanted to bring back what had been lost. So, he immersed himself into learning everything he could about how the Torah teaches the weaving process, from the shearing of the wool to the dying, spinning and weaving of it. And thus, Ketonet Pasim was born. Here at Ketonet Pasim we take much pride in preserving this long lost biblical art and tradition of making this ancient tallit that, baruch hashem, is now being restored! Every tallit we make is 100% made by hand from beginning to end and made with complete joy and intent of elevating this commandment with complete kadusha. Our tallits are custom made with the finest merino wool and many colors and designs to choose from. Our tallits come with 100% kosher, hand-spun (avodat yad) tzit-tzit and techelet made from the cuttlefish. We can tie your tzit-tzit for you according to your choice of Ashkanaz, Sephardic and Yemenite. Check out the rest of our site to explore more of how we make our tallits, our products and why we do what we do!