Modest Clothing Shopping: Don’t Do It Alone

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Shopping for modest clothing with a buddy isn’t just fun—it could save your wardrobe. You could be one layering shirt or modest accessory away from total fashion disaster, but not if your trusty shopping buddy is there with you.

Most of us know that it’s helpful to have a friend when we hit the mall. For example, I’m a hemming-and-hawing shopper, so I need my sister with me to give me the push to actually buy something. And a good SB (Shopping Buddy)—will always answer honestly when you ask, “Does this look good on me?”

But shopping for modest clothing is extra tricky. Often, we modest dressers are creating outfits of our own design. We see an amazing sleeveless dress, just perfect for [insert name of occasion, or just day of the week, here] and we decide to “modest-ize it” by pairing it with a layering shirt underneath. Or, hmmm….would it look better with a cute cardigan on top? SB to the rescue. And because that sleeveless dress was meant to be, well, sleeveless, we’re never quite sure if the colors coordinate, if we’re “pulling off” the look. But your SB—she’ll tell you if you’re rockin’ it…or not.

Long Tank Top

Long Tank Top

Then there’s the adorable V-neck sweater with a plunging neckline. Would the black tank top look better underneath? Or the white tank top? Your SB can help you decide.

There are more and more websites out there that cater to the modest dresser. You can buy an adorable sweater without a plunging neckline. Or an amazing dress with sleeves. But we don’t want to confine ourselves to only “modest clothing” stores, wonderful as they are. We want the freedom to buy clothing from any store in the world and turn it into something we can wear, modestly and confidently.

So we stock up on bolero jackets, tank tops, cardigans and layering shirts of all shapes and sizes, to create our own “modestly modern” wardrobe. A good SB helps you find those perfect layering pieces, or a hey-I-never-would-have-thought-of-that-but-it-looks-amazing outfit.

Saving your wardrobe, one tank top at a time.

What about you? Are you a go-it-alone shopper? Or do you believe, like I do, that two shopping heads are better than one?

8 Responses to Modest Clothing Shopping: Don’t Do It Alone

  1. Rosia Frazier February 27, 2012 at 10:56 am #

    I disagree, wholeheartedly. At least for us fashionistas in America, as most American women dress poorly. Just ask European women. We have far too many choices and not enough direction in the States. Therefore, SB’s wind up being ‘the blind leading the blind’. As a woman of faith, I am tired of seeing frumpy other women of faith. The way we dress is our witness to the world. See Proverbs. What woman WANTS to be frumpy? We must have what others want, not what they abhor, in order to reach the lost. Not enough of us have fashion and style training ‘from the world’, and that coupled with the need to be discreet/modest is usually and often a disaster.

    As a woman of faith who used to be ‘in the world’ and received much training in the art of fashion, I find that the best way to ‘rock’ any outfit, is to study the fashion mags, determine your “own” style, and then create a discreet look using classic pieces as your guide. Not all colors work for every woman as well as not all fabrics and cuts. That will limit us. But as all things of faith, you can allow that to make you bitter and rebellious or you can become more faithful through your creativity. It is all about perspective, and not necessarily the perspective of your SB.

    • Sara March 15, 2012 at 4:37 am #

      What do you disagree with?

  2. amanda April 13, 2012 at 2:11 pm #

    My husband goes shopping with me. At first, this really irritated me. Then I realized that, since he’s the only person I have to please, this is a great idea. He is more detailed and finds things easily. Most of my female friends don’t care about modesty, so my husband is my best shopping buddy, even if it’s not always fun!

  3. Chris May 9, 2012 at 1:57 pm #

    PLEASE expand your size range to us larger ladies in the plus sizes; even just 16, 18, 20 would be VERY helpful. Also, do you have a suggestion for swimwear (must do water exercise for health reasons)? Thanks!

  4. Natalie June 11, 2012 at 8:07 pm #

    I love this post! It is so true! I never just “look” at clothing in a store, I am always imagining how to take something very immodest and make it a viable modest option. Moms are perfect help with this :)

  5. Latasha June 29, 2012 at 9:29 am #

    I agree with the SB idea. As I attempt to dress more modestly I can see how another set of eyes would be helpful. For those who are new to dressing modestly, how does one find this buddy if their current friends aren’t in a modest mindset?

  6. carol gipson October 17, 2012 at 9:22 am #

    To agree or not to agree does not necessarily indicate total wrong on either part. As with anything in life, excess can result in trouble as well as any slack; the real thing to consider is moderation and balance. That is where we consistantly find the results we are looking for.

    Anybody can be a SB which can be very helpful! It can also be a disaster! Every human has different perspectives about everything!

    A SB can certainly be helpful in providing ideas, motivation, and entertainment.

    I have found that pre-planning the shopping trip can save the day. Know what you have already in your closet to build your wardrobe on, maybe carry a scarf that has all the colors in a couple of basic pieces you have at home.

    Whether you have a SB with you or not, just make sure to look at all angles of your body while wearing the piece and think to yourself…if I saw a lady inside or outside of (any location), that looked like that (your silloutte -everything you saw in the mirror without the details of your face) I would think…..(insert your own text). )Do not be judgemental-just accept the size and shape as though it were anybody in the world (this means BE OBJECTIVE)

    Think about how the textures and colors flow. Will they stand out in a crowd or will they comfortably flow with others perhaps being an accent in the crowd (that means the whole thing makes the crowd look better!)?
    Change only what you want to about the whole look.

    Just remember, there are two parts to shopping for clothing (really more, but these are 2 Very important basic rules to apply).

    1. Does the piece fit comfortably and hang properly around all the body curves?

    2. Do the colors and textures of all the pieces complement each other AND do they complement the colors and tones of your hair, skin, and eyes?

    And remember, take it home, look at it all together in the home and natural lighting. Keep the tags on it and the receipt close at hand.

    If it “feels right” it probably is. If it “feels wrong” it IS wrong, take it back! :)

    Happy shopping & best wishes for success!

  7. Jo February 7, 2013 at 2:24 am #

    I agree with the SB. When I came back to truth 20 years ago I had forgotten how to dress modestly. My pastors’ wife became my SB, and my husband joined us to learn the ins and outs of modest shopping. He has become an awesome SB, even though I may not always like what he says about something I think is cute. But he sees how he wants the world to see me, beautiful and Godly. Not cutesy and just barely modest. So there is one idea on finding someone to be your objective SB.

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