This post is going to tell of my struggle to get a grasp on femininity and my conclusions of the research I have done. I am not making conclusions for anyone else as I feel, after obedience to God...each woman (with input from her husband preferably) has to make a personal decision about what all this will mean in her own life. If you have not been reading this series, you can get caught up by clicking on the label "Women's Fashions" in the sidebar.
The book series I got most of my information from had a lot of pictures in them. I loved, loved, loved looking at all the pictures. Right up until the 1960s. From what I can tell, it all fell apart during that decade. A good example of that is the Beatles. They started the decade in matching suits and ended it in...well, I think we've all seen those pictures (or remember!). And that pretty much sums up what happened to fashion during that decade.
But prior to that, women looked so lovely! I especially love the dresses from the 1940s and 1950s. I'm not sure we will ever look that lovely again. Sigh. Don't get me wrong...I love me some comfortable blue jeans! And I really love capri pants. And even more, I love not owning pantyhose. I think I'm ruined.
What really matters in all of this? Well, what God has to say about it all is what matters. We covered that in this post. So the MAIN NUMBER 1 THING that I need to concern myself with is this: are the clothes my daughters and I are wearing modest?
I began a few summers ago weeding out the hand-me-downs. Even though I think chubby toddler arms look so sweet in a tank top with spaghetti straps, I will not want my daughters wearing tank tops with spaghetti straps when they are teenagers. I decided I should implement modesty standards right away instead of waiting until "it matters." Now when we get a bag of hand-me-downs, Sweetheart can immediately pull out the ones that she knows I would not allow. And she knows why too. So in all of our clothes, the first thing I check is that they are modest.
That is no small topic either! I have studied modesty and I know it is far more than just "clothes that cover you." I've read that modesty is actually a heart attitude, but there are very physical things to think about. There is the weight of the fabric to think about (is it see-through?), the fit (too snug?), the coverage...the list goes on and on. Still, I think it's pretty easy to be modest.
If you haven't read the results of The Modesty Survey (ESPECIALLY if you have daughters!), I would encourage you to do so because it covers things (Ha! No pun intended) that I would never ever think of in a million years.
I cannot end this post without thinking about the other thing the Bible says about clothing and that is it is not where our beauty should really come from. I suppose this is where some religious groups get the idea of plain clothing. So, in addition to ensuring modesty in our clothing, we must also remember that our beauty should come from other places.
This is important to me as the mother of girls. My attitudes, the things I say about my appearance, the time I spend on fixing myself up...all these things shape my girls' perception of beauty. That is something I need to spend some more time thinking about.
Next time...combining modesty and femininity.