Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Summer Shifts to Sensible Wear

Lady-like Midi Dress


We are at a crossroads this year.  We have the T-shirt generation living out their uniqueness in all types of knit styles.  It seems fit and flare and many go for the dare.  We are called to be an adornment to the gospel and that should we be unapologetically desiring to live for our Sovereign Lord and Savior.    What holds us back from dressing modestly?  There are many factors that go into this just as much as there are many factors that cause us to do or not do the things we know are to do that would please God.  After all, it is He whom we wish to "impress"  and please.  Our husbands can help us as can our children be open and honest yet respecting us and also a faithful friend or an older, wiser woman can give us advice.  One can also go by the adage - when in doubt, don't.  If our hearts are right with God and we do not let our feelings and emotions control our desires, we should be able to dress modestly and appropriately.  Oftentimes  modest clothing can become shaded with the grey areas that attempt to follow the styles of contemporary fashion that seeks to emulate the figure or draw attention in a lustful way.  As women we are very clever at deceiving ourselves at times for the sake of vanity.  And where does that get us?  I know I am ashamed when I think of the ways I  dressed in the past-definitely offending the Holy Spirit and not for the sake of Jesus Christ who died for me.

As for the crossroads, our focus is on acceptance by the current culture, we don't want to stand out or make ourselves look old-fashioned or "religious" looking.  Granted there are those who follow standards set by the groups, organizations, etc.,that they are a part of and one can differentiate between those who do and those who don't.  Our goal as believers should be to dress in a way that shows our allegiance to the One who made us women to look and act like women so that we can fulfill those roles with grace and honor.  Rules could be stated that would lay down a "law" of what is modest and what isn't; but our All-knowing Lord left that for individuals to decide.  In some cultures some clothes we wear in the U.S. are not fitting, proper, or respectful.  However, "bloom where you are planted" and make the best use of what you have to make yourself neat, clean, presentable, and glorifying our Savior.  We do not necessarily want to stand out but do want to look approachable so that we can give an answer of why we look and dress the way we do.

For those who want to challenge the idea of  "modest dressing", not as some would lead you to believe by interpreting modest as the world does, but I would challenge you to study what God considers modest and what he considers a harlot's dressing.  It will take some time and searching but may His Holy Spirit  help you settle in your mind and heart where you want to be in regards to whom do you dress for.  Be careful to make up your mind according to the scriptures and not man's rules, opinions, and skewed interpretations.  You need to  know in your heart what is appropriate and pleasing unto the Lord.  I would suggest an Interlinear Greek- English New Testament,  The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge, an 1828 Webster Dictionary,  Young's or Strong's Concordance, and perhaps even some Puritan books as they seemed to seek the mind of Christ and knowledge of God a whole lot more than we ever desire to. (NO, I am not asking you to dress like a Puritan or Pilgrim!  Just find out what principles they have learned from their scholarly studies.)  I know the Puritans gave their opinions, but they are probably a lot more astute in their assessment than most of the authors of the past couple centuries!

I am hoping that styles will change for those who have a sense of making a difference to those in close proximity regarding family, friends, church, social activities, and working outside the home. We are in need of feminine clothes that make girls, young ladies, and ladies of all ages looking more pretty than sexy.  With the ease of knits, we often forget that tightness draws attention to the areas that are fitted and outlined by the fabric.  Oftentimes a comfortable looseness relieves us of generating those "looks" that are an embarrassment for all close by.  I don't think many women look in the mirror at all angles to really see what they look like.  Because there is so much flesh showing, particularly when the weather is warm, we tend to gravitate to the current knit close-fitting styles, because we see it on a lot of women and what is seen often gets repeated in our minds and we become accustomed to those looks and that is mostly what is available and less costly.  We compromise. This is where one ought to consider lightweight natural woven fibers that can be made into a comfortable loose blouse or top.  The classic styles work well for that kind of fabric.  There are a lot of colors and prints available or one can shop online.  I know one of the difficulties of ordering online is the color issue--very hard to get exact tones. One of the reasons I like to sew because fitting can be another issue also.
  So here are some tops to make for the rest of Summer and early Fall:
Butterick 6175

Butterick 6324

McCalls 6927

McCalls 7359
You may want to wear  a modesty piece with
this top.

McCalls 7360

New Look 6434




Vogue 8772

Vogue 9256


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