Tuesday, June 7, 2011

The Heat Is Here- But Press On!

We have a heat advisory in effect where we live for several days. It is HOT here! I long for Summer to come, and when it does come I wonder why I wanted it!

When it comes to dressing modestly, the heat can do some people in. Even I have compromised my personal standards at time. Two years ago when I was pregnant with Olivia, we went to the zoo and the heat was so bad I wore a sleeveless dress all day. While not a huge deal to most people that's not my top choice for modesty.

At the zoo with Carrianna in 2009

I want to encourage you to develop a standard for modesty and stick with it. It is so easy to compromise, and if you don't have a clear plan in place for what you personally feel comfortable wearing, it will be easy to flounder in uncertainty.

What are some ways you can stay cool in the summertime?

*Wear Cotton! I love wearing a light weight cotton dress or skirt that blows in the warm wind during summer. I still wear polyester in the summer, but not everyday. If you need a slip underneath, a really light weight cotton slip is best.

*Go barefoot in the house or wear sandals. I don't like wearing tennis shoes during the summer, and only wear them if I'm going on a long walk, or to places like the zoo where my feet might really start hurting. It is so much cooler to have sandals or flip flops on.

*Stay inside! This might seem obvious, but on really hot days, why even try doing fun things outside? I have friends who start their school year July 1 each year, because they want to be done when Spring comes so they can play outside when it is nice and cool. Of course, this is only helpful if you have an air conditioner.

*Wear a cold washcloth around your neck. When we were first married our air conditioner did not work very well. Then we moved to an old farmhouse with no air conditioning. Yikes! Our landlady finally bought us a window unit when she found out I was expecting, but I will admit it was hard to survive the heart. I walked around many days with a wet washcloth on my neck to cool down.

What are some ways you stay cool while wearing a dress or skirt in the summer?



At June 7, 2011 at 8:15 AM , Blogger Miss Linda said...

I live in Texas, where we have already reached temperatures of 100 degrees. I know very well what it is like to maintain a strong standard of modesty during this very warm weather. Fortunately,

I just finished sewing a 100% cotton, light-weight jacket and sleeveless shell ensemble. It looks very nice, but is also lightweight and cool. I have already bought a couple of lengths of fabric that will be made into lightweight jackets appropriate for our warm weather. I am very thankful for air conditioning, and do not go outside for any length of time in the afternoons. I run my errands (grocery store, etc.) in the early morning hours before it gets over 90.

I think it is important to maintain modesty even in this warm weather. I see all around me women wearing practically nothing--shorts or figure-revealing capri pants, sleeveless tops or tops with spaghetti straps. This cannot be called modest. Standards of modesty should not be abandoned when it is inconvenient or uncomfortable. It is possible to wear a cool, comfortable top that covers the skin while at the same time allows the skin to breathe.

In my fabric stash I have a couple of lengths of lovely eyelet material that I will be converting into summer tops. They will be modest, but also quite cool.

I am so grateful to have found this site. It is such a great encouragement to me to find other like-minded women who are striving to please God by dressing and behaving modestly. Thank you for taking the time to maintain this site, despite your busy schedule!

Have a blessed week! :)

At June 7, 2011 at 8:45 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Honestly, I don't think the dress you are wearing in the picture is the least bit immodest. The neck line is quite high, and the tank top strap is very wide. The thing different from this and any other dress is a few inches more fabric for some sleeves. If men are going to lust after a woman, they are going to do it no matter what you are wearing, and bare shoulders with the kind of tank you are wearing are the least of your worries.

At June 7, 2011 at 8:58 AM , Blogger Caroline said...

I don't think that the sleeveless dress I wore is terrible, but my husband prefers me to have some sort of sleeve on my dress or shirt, and I prefer it also. It is just really easy to have your bra strap show when you wear sleeveless.

At June 7, 2011 at 10:23 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

i personally don't wear jumper dresses without a shirt under it nor allow my children to...Dresses are always longer than knee length as well..something light and moving is cool.

At June 7, 2011 at 11:20 AM , Blogger Mama Mandy said...

This is all so subjective. The most important thing to me is to not be judgemental in my striving to be modest. It is easy to be so focused on what's "right" that you miss what's good & Christ-like.

At June 7, 2011 at 11:22 AM , Blogger Laurel H. said...

This is a great conversation!

Modesty means different things to different people. For some, any sleeve length shorter than long sleeves is immodest; for others, anything that is not sleeveless/strapless is modest. Similarly, some view skirts above mid-calf length as immodest; others are comfortable with skirts that barely touch the knee.

To address the comment above, it is true that there are men who will lust after a woman, no matter how covered she is. However, this is not the same topic as the fact that a woman should wear what she believes to be modest. (It is true, however, that the more skin a woman reveals, the more men will lust after her. I don't think any of us would dispute that. Simply wear what you know to be right for you.)

What's interesting is that, long before I began to be convicted to dress more conservatively, I worked at the world's largest, most prestigious accounting firm, where I was required to always cover my shoulders (i.e., nothing sleeveless was permitted). (Also, pants could only be worn if they were part of an actual suit.) Predictably, I developed a dislike of bare shoulders because of this experience. Even on the hottest days of summer, I cannot bring myself to wear sleeveless tops/dresses.

Caroline, while I think you look very modest in your dress in the photo, I can certainly relate to your discomfort; I, too, would not be comfortable with my arms exposed. It was actually the first thing I noticed when I saw the photo. :) But I am loathe to tell another woman that she cannot ever wear sleeveless clothing; that is something that she must be convicted of. Otherwise, it becomes legalism.

Thanks again for daring to broach this topic!

At June 7, 2011 at 11:29 AM , Blogger Caroline said...

I try and be clear in my posts that I'm not laying down guidelines of what I think the modesty standard is and that every woman should follow them. Hopefully what ladies get out of the above post is find out what your own standard is, and stick with it! Summer time is when it gets easy to compromise with what your standard is, that is why I shared that I compromised awhile back with what I wore that day. For others that would not be compromising at all, but it was not lined up with MY family standards. :)

I do not want to appear legalist, nothing ruins the subject of modesty more than being legalist. A modest spirit and a modest appearance is both extremely important. :) A judging spirit takes the joy out of seeing a modestly dressed woman, if all she does is judge others....

At June 7, 2011 at 11:46 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

When it comes to modesty how do you approach hair length in the girls? I am in transition of all my daughters changing over to wearing skirts and dresses only. I feel shoulder lenght is the shortest if they are wanting a hair cut. I personally prefer long and up in a bun and skirts or dresses to the floor and quarter length sleeves on their shirts or dresses. I also prefer a head covering as well which I have one daughter who now wants to wear them as well. Blessings, Dawn

At June 7, 2011 at 11:56 AM , Blogger Caroline said...

I used to wear a head covering, but no longer do. I have never cut my hair shorter than my shoulders, as I just prefer it to look feminine and long. I recently cut 11 inches off of my waist length hair, and donated it to locks of love. I was ready for a change, and love the cooler feel for summer. It's about two inches below my shoulder. But that's the shortest I personally would go. :) My little girl's hair is slowly growing out!

At June 7, 2011 at 12:45 PM , Blogger Miranda said...

Very interesting conversation. I usually wear a head covering and I also usually don't go sleeveless. I do sometimes at home and there are certainly some tank tops that are more modest than other. Ultimately the bottom line is that I want to honor Christ in everything I do, including what I wear.

At June 7, 2011 at 12:51 PM , OpenID suddenlymom said...

It is getting hot here in Indiana as well... we seem to have extreme winters and extreme summers! I do not know how to sew nor do I have a machine, so most of my clothes come from Walmart or Goodwill. I am pregnant this summer which makes me feel even more warm, so I have noticed a big change in wearing light colored tops. Even if it has short sleeves, a darker or brighter colored top is so much hotter than a nice white or peach colored top. I have been trying to collect lighter colors (that are not see-through) to wear this summer.

At June 7, 2011 at 1:17 PM , Anonymous Anne said...

This may seem like a strange tip for keeping cool, but we've found that keeping our A/C at a more moderate level throughout the summer actually helps us to tolerate the high heat better.

Yes, it feels nice to have it at 70 or 72 when it's 100 degrees outside, but not only does it burn tons of electricity, but it makes the "shock" to your system of going from indoors to outdoors (and back again) that much harder.

It can't be good for the body to go from dripping sweat in the 100 degree sunshine to dry frigid 70 degree air. Gradual heating and cooling is always best. In fact, I wonder if it doesn't weaken the body's tolerance of heat to live with really cold A/C during really hot weather.

Last summer we kept our air conditioning somewhere between 75 and 80 and even that small change helped both our pocketbook and our physical wellbeing.

At June 7, 2011 at 1:36 PM , Blogger Niki said...

Well, up here in our part of Canada we are having a cool spring! And I am very thankful, as I am expecting. It will likely get hot before the baby is born in July though, so I really appreciate this little chat about setting modesty standards and sticking to them.

At June 7, 2011 at 2:19 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi my name is Tina, I just wanted to say thank you for your blog...I love how it all reflects modesty! I look up to you a lot Caroline (:

At June 7, 2011 at 3:18 PM , Blogger mosey said...

Love this and couldn't agree more! Also, wearing light colors in the summer helps!!

At June 7, 2011 at 3:39 PM , Anonymous Anne said...

I'm also expecting a baby and 7 months pregnant now, and I have to say the trick they use in the Middle East and other scorching hot regions of the world really works. We had a 103 day on Monday and I did not feel overheated at all walking around outside while wearing my long denim cotton skirt and a 3/4 sleeve cotton button down shirt. I've read that the natural fabrics help deflect the sun's rays, keeping you cooler and also protecting the skin. My brother-in-law is a farmer and he's always worked in the full sun while wearing cotton slacks and a long-sleeved shirt (he leaves the cuffs unbuttoned). Funny, I've never seen a farmer in shorts and a tank top, although it would seem at first glance to be a "cooler" outfit.

At June 19, 2011 at 9:57 PM , Anonymous Cynthia Gee said...

Sleeveless doesn't HAVE to be immodest. Gaping big armholes are the result of the fashion industry and clothing manufacturers being too cheap to pay people to make a properly constructed armhole.
I remember the dresses my Mother used to wear (and the ones she made for me), back in the 1960's, and the armholes were quite small. No matter how you stood or how you held your arms, nobody could look in the sleevehole and see your bra, and Mama made sure of that!

At July 2, 2011 at 8:34 PM , Blogger jes said...

Question for you ladies: Does anyone know where to find a coullette style slip? I believe that is the name I want- a slip that is sewn up the middle, so it is really a pair of baggy shorts. Does that make sense? I live in Mississippi and my greatest struggle in the heat and humidity is that my legs stick together under my skirt. I don't want to add leggings or shorts because of the temperature. Since I am often wearing a slip already, I would love a slip that would cover between my thighs. My mother found one in a catalog, but when we received the order, the slip was extremely short, like a mini-skirt slip, which means you then have to wear a longer slip over that, defeating the purpose of being cooler! (I wear knee length or longer.) Thank you for your help!


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