June 24, 2011

What's the Big Deal with Skirts?

I didn't know it, but that day would change my life. I was briskly walking up the steps, fully ready {or so I thought}, for the ladies' Bible study I was going to attend. However, when I walked through the door, I suddenly felt ridiculously out of place. The reason? Everybody within a ten-mile radius was wearing skirts, while I had my summer shorts on. To put it mildly, it was awkward. But more than that, it was disconcerting. You see, I had never really seen women in skirts. All right, I *had* seen a few mini-skirts in my time, but never the calf-length, feminine ones these girls were sporting. Not only were they different on the outside, but the atmosphere they created was unlike anything I had ever experienced. There was a certain tranquility that pervaded over that gathering, a touch of grace and beauty, which I was not used to. My flesh was repulsed, but in the depth of my heart, something stirred, and I would never remain the same.
Now, over two year later {*gasp* has it really been that long?}, I hardly ever wear pants. You might be thinking that I have something against them. Maybe I've joined a cult and banned pants from the existence of the universe. :laughs: No, I haven't joined a cult, {never will, I follow the one true saviour and Lord, Jesus Christ!!!}, and I will never ban pants from the world. Come on! We wouldn't want guys to wear *skirts* would we? :the horror: Kilts, I understand, are not skirts, but I still don't get the point of wearing them. They look enough like skirts to me :P All right, back on topic: I'll save that debate for another time. ;)
So why do I wear skirts and dresses, instead of pants? I keep leaving you in suspense... If I haven't joined a cult banning pants, you might jump on the next culprit: modesty. Now, we all have different views on whether pants are modest or not. I for one, think they are modest. I know some of you do not wear pants for reasons of modesty, and I absolutely respect that, but I do not have problems with {most} pants. I believe they *can* be perfectly modest. Note the "can". Skin tight leather pants are not high on my list of modest items. :P
All right, you say, not a cult, not modesty... so what is your reason? I call it femininity:
Deuteronomy 22:5 A woman must not wear men's clothing, nor a man wear women's clothing, for the LORD your God detests anyone who does this. {NIV}
You might think, "Uh, isn't that a bit of a technicality? Come on, that was in the *Old* testament! Why would God care about what we wear as long as our heart is in the right place?" I agree, I don't think it is exactly the clothes God cares about, but the principle behind this concept:
Genesis 1:27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.
Men and women were both created in God's image, but they were made uniquely. Differently. Men are distinct from women, and women are distinct from men. No one tries to refute that concept. In the secular world, {for me, that means non-Christians}, all sorts of theories are coming up to try and describe this difference. Some of them are more crazy sounding than others: books like "Men are from Mars, and Women are from Venus" attempt to explain what makes us different. I'm sorry, but separating our origins to distinct planets is a wee bit over the top. ;) For Christians, the answer to why we are created uniquely is quite simple. The Bible shows us that we are created differently because God purposefully designed us that way. When God commanded people not to wear the opposite gender's clothing, it wasn't because he was being picky, but he wanted us to celebrate the differences between our genders through our clothing. Who are we to refuse him?
Romans 9:20 But who are you, O man, to talk back to God? "Shall what is formed say to him who formed him, 'Why did you make me like this?'"
Every morning when I wake up, I want to show the world that I am a woman after God's own heart. Don't get me wrong, wearing skirts and being modest is not going to do this for you. These outward signs should only reflect what is on the inside:
1 Peter 3:3-4 Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit which is of great worth in God's sight.
In this world, wearing skirts is taking a quiet stand. It is an act of gentle rebellion. It is a movement: femininity, in a feminist world. We don't need to be like men; we can be equal, but different. I've joined this revolution; this movement to honor our God-given roles. Will you join me?
You don't have to start big: if you are a jeans 24/7 type of gal, wearing a skirt even once a week will be a HUGE plunge. But let me tell you, it is so worth it. My life has been changed since I purposefully highlighted my femininity. If skirts are too much for you, I understand. Maybe you have been a tomboy all of your life, and skirts are a bit.... foreign? Well, why not wear your hair down today. Put on a cute flower headband. Walk around in your favorite high heels. Grab those beautiful earrings you have been eyeing at Claire's. Try on that gorgeous dress at Macy's. Start wearing feminine colors like purple, pink, yellow, and blue. These small touches will make a difference in the way that you carry yourself, and how others perceive and treat you.
It won't be easy. But it wouldn't be worthwhile if it wasn't hard, and Jesus does say that there will be times where we must suffer for his kingdom. No, I doubt you will ever be thrown in a lion's den like Daniel, but you might face ridicule and difficulties. {like NEVER being able to find pretty, modest skirts :P I suggest thrift/consignment/vintage stores} In the end, it will be worth it. More than loving skirts and dresses, I have learned to appreciate the fact that God created me a woman. It is a wonderful feeling, when you embrace the role he has given you!
God bless you, and much love :)
~Southern Belle
*Disclaimer* I do not want this post to offend anyone, so please do not take this the wrong way. I understand if you hold different views from me, and I completely respect that; I know that my view is not the only one on this subject. I only ask that you respect my beliefs. I am definitely not the authority on this subject; ultimately, it is between you and God. Please do not misinterpret my goal! Feel free to discuss your opinion with me, but please do so with consideration, as I hope I have done. :)

23 comments:

Patrizia said...

oh, thank you for this!

Your story reminds me a bit of mine in a way. The night I got saved, years ago at 19 yrs. old. *Im an old lady now* :P

I was in a church & I hardly had any clothes on. I didnt have a problem with the way I looked when I walked out the door that evening. I looked great! I thought.

It wasnt a conservative church by any stretch of the imagination, but people had clothes on. :)

I walked the isle when they had the altar call & suddenly I felt completely naked & for the first time I saw my shame before men. I was embarrassed & felt quite awkward. Suddenly, I felt like everyone was staring at me.

Here I am naked in church. Yikes. It was a turning point in my life.

I didnt wear skirts until many years later when our oldest began to think this is how we should dress as ladies. I fought it, but understood. Today, I wear only skirts. I love it! I feel like a lady every day!

Do I judge ladies who wear pants? No, but it does depend on how they are worn. Skirts can be very immodest also, it truly is a matter of the heart.

Great post!

anthea1017 said...

niceeee!!!!!! you hit the nail on the head!!!i agree with everything you wrote in this post. nice.:))

Kailee said...

Wow, I never really looked at it like that! My Dad has this big thing for girls wearing skirts, and I've always held that in contempt. Thanks for turning my view and helping me to understand! My wardrobe will be changing a little me thinks :D

Kailee said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mary said...

AMEN!!! I am SO glad you wrote this. I've never worn a pair of pants in my life...my mama always raised me to be a modest lady with long skirts all the way to my ankles, following the same verses you added to this post. I remember I tried on a pair of jeans once before, just to see what they were like...and I was so horrified how they looked and felt on me that I ripped them off and threw them. And while I don't agree on everything you said in this post...I do admire your views greatly! Thank you for writing this, deary...more girls need to realize the importance of modesty and femininity. God bless you<3

Southern Belle said...

You all are SUCH an encouragement! I am so glad that there are people like me, joining in this revolution!! Keep strong for the Lord, and thank you for writing those sweet comments ♥ They mean *so* much to me! much love :)

Miss Virginia said...

Nice post! :) I agree with you, I enjoy wearing skirts because they make me feel more feminine--there's nothing I love so much as a twirly skirt!

I love your blog's style, too--you seem to *revel* in beauty! Where do you find all the lovely pictures?

Elizabeth said...

Hi Southern Belle.

I'm new to your blog but I really like all of your fashion tips and pictures!

While I don't agree with everything you mentioned, I do respect your views and I really like how you put it. I've heard SO many judgemental and blunt statements on the "skirt movement" but this was just lovely and well-thought out.

I think that wearing skirts make women/girls look beautiful and enhances their femininity (though a girl can certainly be feminine and Godly without a skirt or a dress.) While I can't see myself giving up pants, being a "romantic" girl, I love to dress up for church and wear a swishy, full skirt a couple of times a week. I enjoy it and it makes me feel pretty, too.

Anyway, good job on this post and your blog!

God bless,
Elizabeth

Southern Belle said...

Miss Virginia, I usually find them on Tumblr or weheartit... Or you can just steal them from my blog ;) I don't mind!
Elizabeth, thank you for sharing that! I do think that for some people, giving up pants might not be what God is calling them to do. I haven't given up pants {and I really don't think God is calling me to do that}, but I do wear them *most* of the time for the reasons I state in this post :)

Mariel Torres said...

your posts are incredibly interesting darling! thanks for sharing your views :)

kisses,
Mariel

Hilary said...

I especially love this post. I was a tomboy growing up, but now that my own daughters are growing up, I'm thinking more about what it means to be feminine as well as modest. Your blog has certainly influenced me to embrace my femininity more, and I thank you for being so gracious about how you share your opinions.

I may never wear skirts all the time, but I feel God is transforming me from the inside out to reveal more of the woman God created me to be. :) Thanks!

I also love the quotes you use. How inspirational! The one that touched me today was, "Some people, no matter how old they get, never lose their beauty -- they merely move it from their faces into their hearts" by Martin Buxbaum. Thanks for helping all of us no matter what our age is to live for Christ in all areas of our lives.

Keep shining and blogging your message for Christ! I think there are a lot of young ladies who are blessed to hear what God has put on your heart.

A true fan,
HL

Sierra said...

Wow Mary I never would have known!
I think that skirts are very cute, feminine, and modest.I am kinda a 24/7 jeans type of girl.I'm a country girl so it's kinda in my blood.I feel uncomfortable in the skirts I have now.If I wear one I wear a pair of shorts underneath.They're all about knee length or so.I don't know why I don't like them.I haven't tried a longer skirt yet.I'm going to have to :)
Because usually I'm fine in a dress(yes I'll still wear shorts underneath sometimes but I feel much more comfortable).This was a great post and even if I don't exactly believe in only wearing skirts I can see how they are more modest and I don't have any hard feelings against people who do though :)
Sierra
Keep Growing Beautiful♥

Hafeles' Wife said...

I too wear skirts and dresses and since I have married into the army.. I am surrounded by women in pants and I am called old school or old fashioned. I dont mind really but I have never heard a response like you just wrote! I LOVE IT! You hit square on the head! It's exactly why I wear what I do. Sadly I have never been to amazing with words. so Thank you for expressing your thoughts so vividly!!! :)
Joyfully, hafeleswife

Jen said...

I love your blog! I am your new follower. I wear skirts just about always! My husband kept saying he liked me in skirts, and wouldn't mind if I threw all my pants away! My journey with modesty began when my brother said, "I wish women wouldn't dress so provocatively" or something like that, and the lightbulb went on in my head...I honestly had never thought about it before. That was over ten years ago, and my feminine and modest views have grown and changed...check out my latest outfit, if you like: http://freshandnewday.blogspot.com/2011/07/what-i-wore-wednesday-sunny-vintage.html
Have a great day!

Meghan said...

I totally agree with your "stance" on the whole skirts/pants modesty issue that is often the subject for strife...one of those things that everyone is different about. There are grey areas...but as you said, skin-tight leather pants are immodest, as are short-shorts. Mini skirts are immodest as well...too much leg!

Femininity is something that looks different for every beautifully unique girl, young woman...I love wearing skirts and dresses, and do at least twice a week on average...but when I'm going walking, or exercising, or cleaning out a little sibling's room LOL, I prefer to wear denim capri's or bermuda shorts. Wearing a classic pair of white bermudas, with a fetching floral top and cute peep toe sandals, I feel feminine and confident.

So glad I found your blog!
~~Meghan
www.justasiam-meghan.blogspot.com

Miss ALK said...

Great post! I love how you expressed your views by using Scripture and not offending anyone else. I do mostly wear pants, but I almost always wear modest skirts or dresses when I am at Church. Being girly is fun! :)

Blessings

xoxox Miss ALK

http://confessionsofamaineteenager.blogspot.com

Mary said...

LOL!!!!!! Your discussion about kilts made me laugh so much!! :):) Love your blog!
Thanks for writing about the "harder" topics that most people don't want to hear. For about a year and a half I've worn skirts- I never really liked pants, and I hated jeans. When I wear skirts, I'm not self-concious about my outfit and everyone thinks I had to work really hard to get all dressed up. I think this is funny because I feel really dressed down- alot of times I wear plain, simple, almost-work skirts and people think they're fancy! It's not that they have frills or a big pricetag, it's because skirts are feminine and they look like you care about yourself. You don't need to show your rear to the world to know that you're important to someone. We're all important to Jesus Christ, and the only thing that matters is that we glorify HIM!
Mary :)

Jennifer Rod said...

wow this was such a great post. i love skirts too and our pastor likes us to wear them instead of pants when we minister because of modesty... but you gave it a new perspective and i really like it. i also feel really feminine and comfortable with them, so i use them more and more now. oh i love dresses too!

Ruthven said...

Good point! Skirts, long hair (although short hair can be feminine too), floral stuff, pink... all trademarks of femininity in fashion. I dislike when girls do the "andro" thing and dress boyishly or entirely like guys just because that is in fashion now, and/or they think they are being 'rebellious', "breaking the stronghold of gender rules" or whatever:

http://blog.stylehive.com/images/uploads/042709-anniehall_BIG.jpg
http://www.fashionsalade.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/05/Katherine-Hepburn.jpg
http://rpmedia.ask.com/ts?u=/wikipedia/commons/thumb/4/43/Bundesarchiv_Bild_102-14627%2C_Marlene_Dietrich.jpg/225px-Bundesarchiv_Bild_102-14627%2C_Marlene_Dietrich.jpg

EVEN WITH LITTLE GIRLS!!!!
http://static.poponthepop.com/images/gallery/shiloh-haircut-picture_290x436.jpg

How dare fashion designers, celebrities, and society encourage girls to become masculine just because we live in a masculinity-worpshipping world, where tomboys gain respect and girly-girls gain insults?

So not to really spite the world, but to contradict good-naturedly, I REFUSE to bend my style to dress like the "icon" Annie Hall, Kate Hepburn, Alexa Chung, Patti Smith, or Brangelina's spoiled but sad little girl, who now, thanks to her bad parents' lack of parenting and guidance, wants to become a man named John. Instead, I will wear dresses and skirts. I will wear makeup- and emphasis my feminine eyes. I will wear pink. I will emphasize my feminine waist (modestly, of course). I will smile and hold my head high when I can. Not to monologue or try to sound deep or anything, but in other words, I WILL be a girl. ;D

Hannah said...

I have joined the revolution of feminine dressed ladies long ago; it is such a blessing to read this post...you have put the argument so eloquently! God bless you~
Hannah

Akhurnu said...

I loved the bit about kilts. So funny, Actually, I do wish men wore them, or robes. I think men can be immodest, too, and I don't like it when I'm sitting down and get an eyeful of a guy's crotch (pardon the visual) as he's walking by. I am a survivor of trafficking and cult abuse and so it is not really a lust issue for me, though before I was married, I looked.

I kind of wish people dressed like the jews dressed in biblical times, where both men and women wore long robes and where underwear (that priests wore -- also known as a type of pants in some opinions) were knee length. Can you just imagine? Underwear being more modest than most shorts girls and women wear today? And many skirts, too.

I wear skirts and am transitioning to full-time skirt wear. It started when I had surgery and wanted skirts so I wouldn't stuggle to get pant legs over my cast. Then when I was researching modest skirts, I stumbled upon some reasons women wear skirts full time, and I realized that my pants are actually immodest. And here I've been thinking I'm so modest.

I remember one pair I had to stop wearing when I was courting the man I married. Those pants had him thinking things he shouldn't have been thinking about me yet. So I stopped wearing them only to wear them again after we were married. Well, if it affected him, how might it be affecting other men?

I had a woman in my church make my skirts since I can't sew yet. I felt really good about that because I get custom skirts made exactly like I want, with extra pockets for carrying stuff like my phone. And I am supporting my church community by giving her business and letting others know how good she is.

So if anyone is wondering about where to find good, modest skirts that won't cost you half a paycheck, ask around at your church to see if there are any seamstresses. Or look one up in your local phone book. The fee I paid covers any repairs that may be needed in the future, so I will have my skirts for a long time to come.

I love the way they make me feel. Definitely more modest and more feminine. And my husband loves the way they look, too.

Francesca Lee said...

Your views are very interesting and your blog is beautiful. I don't agree with you on many points, but you have shown me fashion from a different perspective. Personally I don't think God cares what we wear. I love dresses and skirts but I also like the androgynous look, which can look very feminine when done right. Dresses and skirts can be inconvenient for some jobs. I'm a reporter so you have no idea if you're going to be covering a disaster or interviewing the prime minister. Jeans are survival wear.

Lisa said...

I know this entry is over a year old, but if anyone sees this, I'd love some advice on how to dress in a more feminine way in a very cold climate with several inches (or feet!) of snow on the ground a lot of the time. I've wanted to add more skirts for a long time now but I just don't know how.

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