Monday, November 30, 2009

So....Now What?

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.


  1. I am not an immodest person but I keep running into posts like this so I think God must be telling me *something*!

    Like A Warm Cup of Coffee held a "modest fashion show" that was quite nice. I did get some clothing inspiration from it anyway.

  2. I just taught on modesty here in SA at our Deaf church. I reminded the ladies that we are responsible to dress ourselves in a way that prevents men from stumbling into sin.

    And being modest is a way to honor our husband and keep our body only for him. Even if no one can see through our clothes, but they can see our body shape clearly, then we are not modest.

    And I agree it's a heart thing too. Who are we dressing for? To please the Lord or to get attention from people?

  3. JulieMom, yes, we need to be careful that we are not dressing in something we know will cause a man to lust.

    BUT a man is responsible for his own lusts and sometimes they are just going to lust no matter what we wear. There is responsibility on BOTH sides.

  4. You know we have always used the word appropiate for our girls.... from when they were very young it has been all about appropriate... I think I have been using the wrong word. I think I have a post here....

    I have enjoyed your series, I never felt in ANY way that you were saying or implying that we should not wear jeans or that God expects us to wear dresses. I really have felt like your posts brought out truths that i would rather leave unsponken. It IS my job to be feminine for my hubbie- he does enjoy it, HE does deserve it and I deserve to make enough time for myself to get "dressed" everyday! I do want to encourage modesty and femininity in my daughters too!

  5. Carrie, I have always used the word "lady like." As in, "Sweetheart, the way you are sitting is not very ladylike." Every time that comes out of my mouth, Little Bit raises up her dress and shakes her booty, grins, and says, "Is this lady like Mom?"

    That girl....

  6. Good point JulieMom--that last question is a great one to ask ourselves!

  7. Oh Molly--thanks for that link! I just looked for a minute but I can't wait to go check out more.

  8. I have a ten year old beauty and since she was little we have tlaked about modesty. I think it is important to discuss with girls the reason why modesty is important both to themselves and to the church body, mostly the boys. By being modest, we are helping our male friends to avoid sin as well as offering ourselves up to the Lord as a pure and holy sacrifice. I have to add, also, that I homeschool and it is easier to have a modest young lady when there are fewer examples of immodesty.

  9. Well, here we are, back where you and I started chatting. :)

    Great post, Brenda. The whole series has gotten me thinking. So much so, that when Grace said she looked liked Daddy yesterday because she had on a long-sleeved button down shirt, I thought of you. (I asked her why, and she said because it had buttons. Not because it was pinker-than-pink with LOTS of flowers on it. But she noticed style of shirt.)

    And, I do believe that as moms, we are responsible in raising up our daughters to be appropriate, lady-like, and modest. We adult women know what boys and men like and can potentially lust after, so it is our responsibility to start early with our daughters so that when they are older, God-willing it will be a non-issue. It's our way to help a brother out, you know?

    And, Little Bit? What a crack up!!!

  10. I have one with an impish sense of humor like that, too (:
    From the very beginning- with the baby clothes-I have determined to only have the girls wearing modest clothes. For one thing, I expected that it will become a natural thing for the girls to recognize (I strive to model it, too) and it has. As a benefit, everyone around us who pays attention noticed, too, and began (for the most part) only giving the girls modest clothes. And believe me, there are plenty of cute but modest clothes. My girls have never been in want of clothes, even when I have to be choosy about the selection at the department store.

  11. I have arrived at the same conclusion as you, Brenda. My first priority is modesty, followed by what the husband likes.

  12. I have really enjoyed reading all your posts in this series.

  13. Mrs. W- I absolutely agree. Men are responsible for where they put their eyes and what goes on in their heads, but we as women know they have these issues, so we need to do our best to help them out. That was all I was trying to say.

    And I don't think that means turtlenecks and ankle length skirts either! :0)

    You're right, no matter what we wear some of them will still be lusting and nasty. But we can do our best to make sure we're not egging it on.


I don't get to talk to a lot of actual grown-ups during the day, so your comments make me really happy! :)