When I redefine modesty in my life, it helps me hone in on my own fashion do’s and don’ts. Some haven’t changed since my teen years (like wearing a slip, old-school but important), others I figured out in my 20’s, and some are new as I moved in my 30’s.
Since I’m tucking my winter clothes in the back of my closet, and rethinking my spring and summer wardrobe (even picking items for the donation pile), I thought I’d share them with you. My fashion do’s and don’ts might change someday, but for now, here’s what I generally follow.
Wear the appropriate clothes to suit the occasion. Be mindful and respectful of where you’re going and who you’re with or will meet with. Don’t ever upstage the bride or celebrant. Don’t flaunt your body at church. Wear a head covering if you go some place where it’s expected or preferred. Will it really kill you? I doubt it, but it will show you care. And that’s a better way to extend the love of God to other people than arguing about it.
Exude confidence when breaking fashion “rules.” Even if you’re not so sure if your style is a hit or miss, don’t show your doubts. Don’t apologize for the boldness of your choices. Confidence instantly elevates whatever you’re wearing.
Invest in a slip or a half-slip. That’s the garment our grandparents wore under skirts and dresses that helps make sheer fabric less see-through. Yes, more modest, and there’s nothing wrong with that.
Wear thin bicycle shorts under skirts and dresses because my thighs touch and I get friction rash if I don’t 🙂 Also, a touch of modesty for the girl who likes to tuck her legs under her on every couch and chair she sits on (*ahem* that’s me).
Wear contrast. Soft and edgy. Jewel tones pink and turquoise. Heels and baggy trousers. Sneakers and dresses. I was taught to always match. It was the traditional view of stylish, but wearing contrast is also stylish and interesting.
Shop your closet. There may be items you can wear that you forgot about. Or, like me, a summer dress I bought on clearance in the winter, that I can finally wear. Shopping my closet has also helped me limit my spending, which I tend to do as shopping therapy (only it never solved any problem).
Leave it out if you’re in doubt when it comes to shopping. If you’re unsure about it, leave it out of your shopping cart. Styles change all the time, so let go of FOMO.
Invest in heel pads. They will save your feet.
Be a walking billboard for brands unless you’re sure about representing them. It can also be an issue of what you’re showing off and why you need to do it.
Jump into fads because they change as quickly as you change your mind. Don’t pay for clothes you’d only wear a few times.
Wear animal prints. This is a personal choice. I just don’t like them.
Wear white as much as possible because I tend to get them stained before I’m even out the door. I guess I’m just not careful enough. If you can keep your whites pristine throughout the day, tell me how!
Sacrifice comfort. I thought I had to because beauty is pain and that’s all the option I have, but that’s a lie. Beauty or fashion doesn’t have to be painful or uncomfortable.
Stop growing. Your personal style could change. Your idea of modesty could change. As you allow room for personal growth, allow room for fashion growth. Learn to let go of what no longer works and embrace the next season of your life.
As with modesty, I went through a season of searching my heart when it came to fashion and style. I’m an INFP. I love introspection. So I asked myself why I wore I what wore, or chose the styles I did. What was I really going through with my punk phase? Sometimes there was a heart issue, and other times, I just wanted to try something I thought was fun. But I am all the more better for figuring out if there was an issue I had to address and offer up to God.
What are your fashion do’s and don’ts? How has your style changed over the years or through seasons of life?