Making the Switch
Until this century, women basically wore dresses.
They ate, danced, worked, played, and breathed in dresses. They even rode horses in dresses. So why is it such a big decision for us to decide to wear all dresses?
I don’t know, but for me it was huge. It’s just not done in our culture. I worried about getting cold in the winter. How would I do my yard work? Or go to the park with the kids? And since all the snake handling women in Kentucky wear only dresses, would everyone would look at me and think I was a religious nut?
At the same time I knew that wearing a dress made me look and feel more feminine. My husband liked them. I liked me in them. More importantly, it helped me maintain a more submissive attitude toward my husband, and a more ladylike attitude with everyone else. It helped me in my walk as a Christian woman. So what was I waiting for?
First of all I want to say that making the switch to wearing all dresses was not a necessarily a religious choice for me. I feel it does help me behave more Christ-like, but I don’t feel everyone has to wear all dresses to be in God’s will. I feel women can and do dress femininely without wearing a dress.
However, for me, wearing a dress is the basic stuff of feeling girly. I remember as a kindergartner, my mom had to make me wear pants to school on gym days and I hated it. Pants made me feel masculine. I wanted to feel like a girl even then. I don’t know where I got that idea. My mom rarely wears a dress. All the women in my family wear pants except to go to church. But I wanted to wear a dress every day, even as a kindergartner.
So now I do, and I can’t ever imagine going back.
Two years ago this June, I made the decision to wear all dresses and skirts. It hasn’t always been easy, but it has been very worth it.
I remember packing up all my pants. I saved a couple pairs “just in case”, but the rest went to the Goodwill. Then I realized I had very little to wear, so I went back to the Goodwill. One great thing about wearing skirts and dresses is that you can find them at the second hand stores in cheap abundance, and they are usually in very good condition since they’re not something women wear every day. So if you’re making the switch and need something to wear, check out the thrift stores. Also, skirts are so very easy to sew. If you own a sewing machine and possess the least bit of sewing skills, you can make one in less than a couple of hours, and usually for less than five bucks.
Now wearing skirts in the summer is easy. They are cooler than shorts, in my opinion, and since you don’t have to wear pantyhose, they are oh so comfortable. There is nothing like the feel of a soft, silky skirt against your legs as you go about your business in the Spring.
Wearing skirts in the winter has proven to be a bit more of a challenge. After all, you have to wear something under there or you’ll freeze to death. Thankfully, I live in Kentucky and the winters here are mild. Most days I can get away with a heavy ankle-length skirt and knee socks, but on occasion we’ll get a cold snap and the temperatures will fall below zero. I had to be prepared for that.
At first I wore Capri leggings underneath my skirts, but I quickly learned those made me feel as masculine as they looked. So I went to tights. Ugh. I LOATHE tights and pantyhose. So I thought about what women in history have done and decided to make myself some feminine undergarments to wear underneath my skirts. I remember pulling up my skirt and showing my friends. It’s so hard to keep those frilly pantaloons a secret.
THEN my husband threw a wrench in my spokes when he asked me to stop wearing underwear under my skirts.
This was NOT an order, so don’t go getting all upset with him. This was him half-jokingly telling me he’d really love it if I were perpetually “available” to him, and since he is such a wonderful husband, I wanted to submit to that request.
So now on cold days I wear crotch-less pantaloons with knee-high socks or hose. They are made from soft cotton muslin. They usually have a ruffle or lace at the edge. They are comfortable and definitely make me feel feminine, and I am still “available” for my husband. Problem solved.
In the past two years I have learned there is nothing I want to do that I can’t do in dresses with just a little imagination. As time went on I learned how to manage my skirts in all sorts of situations. I learned it is not a good idea to wear light, full skirts in March. I learned to wear a longer, fuller skirt for hiking, and a shorter one at the beach. I have casual denim skirts I can wear with a sweatshirt and tennis shoes for hiking. I have no-nonsense skirts for the rare business meeting. I have old skirts for housework and nice skirts for church. They are just a normal part of my wardrobe and I wouldn’t have it any other way.