This article in Genteel.com, The New Orthodox, by Amanda Coen, got me thinking about modesty and style.
It describes some changes in traditional Hasidic dress in Crown Heights,
Brooklyn, among the Chabad-Lubavitch movement of Orthodox Judaism. The
author explains, “Orthodox women follow the Torah’s laws of tznius, or
modesty, where elbows and collarbones must be covered, stockings must be
worn and skirts must go past the knee.”
Two Orthodox women, Mimi Hecht and Mushy Notik, are experimenting with new approaches to traditional garb. They founded MIMU MAXI, a clothing line that adheres to the rules but offers more varied and colorful choices. Apparently, according to the article’s author, “the gentrification of their neighborhood has brought them a whole new audience (and dressing modestly seems to be “in”).”
“The world is slowly waking up to the idea that leaving something to the imagination is more beautiful,” states Hecht. “With style icons like Kate Middleton, Olivia Palermo not to mention many runway looks increasingly turning to long dresses and skirts, there is something very beautiful and fashionable about dressing modestly.
I had to click over to their site, and found some terrific skirts:
|This is the MIMU Edge skirt. $48.|
|And this is the Bon Voyage. $52, but sold out.|
As a woman, I applaud any other woman’s desire to dress more authentically with her personality. If she chooses to strictly adhere to a religious code that prescribes her wardrobe, and that suits her, that’s all good too.
I am not a follower of any formal faith, so I have no religious basis for my ideas about modesty. But I’m sure I fall to the “Modest” end of the spectrum. I love skirts to the knee and below. Even my swim wear consists of board shorts and a rash guard, over a bikini top. No cleavage for me outside the house, just ’cause that’s how I like it.
If you read my blog, you know I hold a “march to your own drummer/wear
what you love” philosophy for all, and stand on no “rules”, except for
moi-meme. How about you: is modesty a concept you take into account? Is it “in”, as the designers in this article suggest? Does your religion or culture provide guidelines about how to dress? I am fascinated, as always, by the variety of our thoughts.
Happy Wednesday, it’s raining like kittens and puppies here!