modest fashion

modesty in dress

By Aimee Peterson

When I was a child, my siblings and I had a terrible case of chicken pox. Besides two weeks of misery as the virus worked its way through all five of us, the disease left me scarred with pock marks. The largest of these scars is located about 2 inches below my collarbone. When I realized the scar was there, I became incredibly self-conscious. Even at the tender age of six I did not want people to see my scar or ask about it. I saw it as a flaw I did not want others to realize I had.
I was an athletic teen and enjoyed a variety of school and competition sports. However, the prospect of buying a swimsuit and joining my friends at the beach or pool left me in tears. It was a challenge to find a swimsuit that had a high neckline that would cover my scar. My mother finally found a swimsuit that fit my needs at an older women's clothing store. It was a hideous one-piece, blue geometric-patterned suit, but I wore that thing for two years because it covered my scar. There was nothing else suitable in the junior's departments of my local mall.
As time passed, I began to see things that I did not recognize in the days of my youth. The first and most important was that my scar did not define me. It did not make me ugly, as I had {wrongly} assumed. My family and many of my friends knew about my scar, and they still loved me and saw me as beautiful. The second thing I learned was that I did not need to dress immodestly to make friends, do well in school and sports, or to get asked out on dates. I had jokingly called my scar my "modesty modifier," since I may not have chosen to dress as modestly if I didn't have it. Dressing modestly gave me confidence and continues to do so today. I believe this is because I learned to respect my body by not showing it off as an object. By keeping myself covered, I respect my body for the incomparable gift that it is. At this point in my life, I am glad I had this experience so I can help other girls find confidence in themselves through modesty. 
Aimee & NicoleI wish that companies like Jen Clothing had been around when I was a teen! I so appreciate companies who make high quality, fashionable, MODEST clothing readily available. I know I do not have to purchase clothing items made for another generation anymore. I can dress well, feel confident, and be modest… all at the same time. This is especially important to me as I watch my youngest sister Nicole navigate her pathway through the teen years. The message I have for her, and for all girls is: "Be you; be confident; be beautiful; be modest!"
Aimee Peterson is a mom blogger at, a Registered Nurse, a wife, a mother of four and a homeschooler. Aimee enjoys reading, freelance writing, gardening, playing tennis and volleyball, travel and being with her family.


By Emmaleigh Burtoft

There are plenty of past fashion trends we may scratch our heads at. Shoulder pads, for example. An oversized T-shirt "casually" gathered together with a bright scrunchie (guilty). Personally, I think platforms and harem pants will be the next decade's Halloween costumes. Ridiculous trends make us laugh, shake our heads, and ask, "What was I thinking?" 

But then there are the trends that really make us shake our heads and ask, "What was society thinking?" Trends that really limited women and their movement–corsets, bound feet, bustles and hoop skirts, you name it. Some of these "trends" lasted for hundreds of years, harming women's health and preventing them from doing things we take for granted today. Like running. Or taking a deep breath.

As strong, twenty-first century females, it's easy to imagine that we would have been the rebels against these obvious attempts to control women. But would we have? After all, everyone else would have been doing it. It would have been what was considered attractive at the time. If we didn't follow the trend, we might have felt ugly or frumpy. And it may have hurt our chances of getting a boyfriend (provided we weren't too particular about the kind of boyfriend we got). It's easy to see the pros and cons of a situation in hindsight, and less easy to see them in the here and now. 

There have certainly been leaps and bounds in what women can do today, with corresponding innovations in the fashion world. We don’t hanker to wear corsets, and I'm sure we're all grateful that it's socially acceptable to wear pants. But are there trends that, even though they limit us, we follow without thinking about their limitations? I think the answer is a solid yes. Here's my own personal definition of a fashion limitation: you’re uncomfortable to do something because of possible overexposure. If you’re wearing an ultra-short skirt and four-inch heels, there’s not much you can do besides sit, rest your aching feet, and cross your legs. If you’re wearing a strapless dress at a party, you may manage a dance move or two, but not without some adjusting in between. Water sports in a string bikini? Forget it. Those things are meant for laying out very still only. Doesn’t sound like much fun, does it?

We all want to look good, but when our appearance is keeping us from accomplishing things we want to be doing, or distracting us from actually living, I think we have a problem. When my husband and I were engaged, he lived about two blocks from the beach, and one day we decided to go body surfing. I was wearing a one-piece swimsuit and a pair of board shorts among countless bikini-clad girls. I’m sure I stuck out, but you know what? I could get into the water. We had a blast riding waves into the shore, and funnily enough, I felt attractive. Not because of what I was or wasn’t wearing, but because of what I could do. I felt empowered and competent and free to do exactly what I wanted. That feeling was definitely worth more than a trend.

Emmaleigh Burtoft graduated from Brigham Young University in English and editing, and is now a freelance copywriter and editor. Between projects she likes to try new recipes and spend as much time with her husband as possible. They live near Orlando, Florida.

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