If you dress modestly, you know that modest skirts are the workhorses of your everyday wardrobe. But do you really know how to shop for skirts? By paying attention to just a few basic principles, you’ll have an easier time when you next go skirt shopping at the mall. You’ll also have an easier time finding the look that matches your body – and your lifestyle.
The Hips Have It
The drape of a skirt begins at your hips. That’s why – when it comes to skirts – your particular hip-shape is crucial to making the right fashion choice.
Fuller-hipped, curvy women should look for A-line skirts that flare out toward the hemline. This de-emphasizes the mid-section, and creates a more streamlined, elegant line.
Straight-hipped women who wish to emphasize their curves are better served by pencil skirts. Gently hugging the hips and becoming narrower toward the hemline, pencil skirts define an hourglass silhouette that – if it’s not taken to an extreme – can be elegant, tasteful and 100% modest. If you want to further accentuate the pencil skirt’s hourglass effect, try tucking in your top, or wearing a cinch belt at the natural waist.
Hemline – How to Decide?
Skirts that fall just below the knee are universally flattering. But if you choose to go lower – to a midi or maxi length – here are some things to keep in mind.
While undeniably modest, for some women, midi skirts can be a fashion failure. That’s because they tend to fall right on the widest part of the calves. If your legs are thick rather than lean, or if you’re of below-average height, midi-length skirts may not be the best choice for you.
How about shopping for long skirts? Again, short women – as well as Petites – should be extra careful, because maxis can make you look even smaller than you are – to the point of even looking “stumpy” (and nobody wants that!). To avoid this pitfall when shopping for maxi skirts, choose one that fits snugly around your hips and thighs. This makes it more likely that you’ll achieve a look that is both modest and elegant.
When shopping for long skirts, remember: your goal is to dress modestly, not to disappear! Rather than choosing skirts that fall to the floor, try a hemline that reaches to the thinnest part of your ankles. This creates the flattering illusion of slim legs in the context of a modest outfit.
Starting a new grade in elementary school? Heading off college? No matter what stage our daughters are at, they want to have fun, make new friends, and… look fabulous.
And why not? There’s nothing wrong with making a fashionable statement based on eye-catching outfits that express your daughter’s spirit within the boundaries of modesty. So moms, when you head out to the mall to update your daughter’s wardrobe with some back-to-school shopping, don’t be afraid to think outside the box. Let your daughter take the lead about colors and styles – while you set the tone about what constitutes “kosher” coverage. You’re sure to find solutions that will make you both happy, and have a good time shopping, too.
Back to School With A Smile
Here are ten tips to get you started:
- A flattering jean skirt is essential for every girl’s wardrobe, but skirts don’t have to be boring, or look like a stuffy school uniform. Look for fun appliqués or flounces (for younger girls) or a sophisticated drape (for high school and college students). Because they go with everything, jean skirts are the foundation of flexible and modest dressing.
- Stock up on casual pencil skirts in a variety of solid colors. This will give your daughter inspiration in the morning, so she can mix and match to create fun new looks.
- Even non-dressy girls appreciate a comfortable dress that slips over the head and gets her out of the door fast. Whether it’s made of tee-shirt material or a more substantial fabric, look for a dress that’s simple enough to be dressed up with some jewelry or a wide belt, or dressed down (a baseball cap worn fashionably backwards and high-top sneakers?).
- Speaking of flexibility, you’ll want to buy more tops than bottoms when you’re shopping with your girls. Pair your school skirts with elegantly casual tees with ¾ length sleeves, or a boat-neck collar. Button-down shirts that skim over the skirt’s waistline are crisp and fashionable choices for fall days on campus.
- If your daughter’s looking for fun fashion, relax – you can afford it. Along with simple colored shirts, stripes and plaids, stock up on bright and inexpensive logo tees that will give your daughter a chance to express her personal style.
- Want to vary the look? Add more interest to a basic top by adding a stylish vest – denim is a good choice to match those jean skirts. Every girl should have two or three outer garments for layering as fall turns to winter, whether it’s a hoodie, pullover, or long sleeve button down cardigan.
- Don’t forget workout clothes. If your daughter’s school has a specific policy about “Phys Ed” fashion, you can probably rest assured that the girls will be steered toward appropriate and modest active wear. But if the school doesn’t supply the dress code, you can step up to the plate. From long basketball shorts to covered sports skirts with leggings, there are a lot of options out there. Find something colorful and comfortable, and your daughter will probably find fashionable uses for them outside of gym class.
- Accessories are make-or-break items for casual back-to-school fashions, but you don’t have to break the bank. Set limits and ground rules with your daughter, but let her do her own shopping in this department. You’ll be surprised how many hair ornaments, belts and bangles she finds that bring her in under budget!
- Shoes, did anyone mention shoes? Before you head out to the store, take a back-to-school inventory. For growing girls, a new pair of school shoes is essential. Your daughter will also need sneakers for gym, boots for wet/snowy weather, and a pair of Mary Jane’s or dressy flats.
- Finally, find the accessories your daughter needs to keep organized. For younger kids, consider purchasing a roller backpack or a backpack with straps. A cute lunchbox will make your daughter feel special, and might even encourage her to eat her vegetables!
I admit it. When I heard about moms in New York City spending thousands of dollars to hire professional organizers to pack their children’s camp trunks, I was shocked. I was also jealous.
Successful packing for sleep-away camp – whether the little darling’s adventure lasts one week or two months – requires more than just working through the camp’s checklist. The trick is to balance the camp’s directives against your child’s very real needs to cover up, yet look cool in all weather conditions. All this, without the availability of a private laundress (er, that would be you).
Swim/Run Skirt with Contrasting Leggings for Girls
First Things First
Before you begin, use a laundry pen to mark every single item that’s going to camp – from socks to soap dish – with your child’s name. Sew-on or iron-on labels are also an option, but only for parents organized enough to order them in time to be available on packing day (Did I mention I was jealous those New York moms?).
Basics that Mix and (More or Less) Match
Children contend with all kinds of situations while they’re at camp, so flexibility is key to successful packing. Limit stand-alone outfits, and instead, choose simple tops and bottoms in colors that work together in a wide variety of combinations. Prepare your camper for the inevitable changes in the weather by packing items that can be layered on during the chilly morning hours, then peeled off as temperatures rise.
A lightweight fleece under a rain poncho will help your kid weather any storm, and will also save the packing room that would be taken up by a dedicated raincoat. And for super hot, sunny days, remember, less is not always more. Pack long-sleeved shirts, long pants or skirts made out of light, breathable materials. You may also want to look into clothing and swimwear that has sun protection built right into the fabric. Such items – formerly sold only in specialty camping stores – are now easy to find, and not that expensive.
Speaking of swimming, if your child is going to be down at the lake every day, a single bathing suit is simply not enough. There’s nothing more unpleasant than suiting up for swimming in something not quite dry. Encourage your children to wear modest swim suits that keep their upper arms and thighs covered and protect them from the sun. Modest swimwear is a fashion statement, and a time-saver; some kids use their modest swimsuit as a wardrobe basic, both in the water and on land.
Color Me Happy
It’s not so long ago that the term “camp shirt” referred to a straight-cut, conservative cotton blouse with a spread collar and buttons. Indeed, this kind of shirt is still in demand for school uniforms. But when camp time rolls around, children want to “make the scene” and meet new people while wearing fun fashions that expresses who they are – or who they would like to be.
I’m not suggesting children should be 100% free to choose their own camp wardrobe. But letting your camper pick out a few splashy T-shirts is more than just a clothing investment. It’s an investment in your child’s confidence, and ultimately, the success of his or her camping experience. Just think of that when all the packing’s done, and the bus is pulling away…
Kosher Casual’s Modest Exercise Skirt
Working out while dressing modestly? It can be done! A sports skirt with attached black leggings, yoga pants and long-sleeve workout shirts are coming to the rescue!
Workout clothing is usually associated with lots of bare skin. But perhaps the idea of “modest workout clothes” conjures an image of running on a treadmill in a long, floral robe. Fret not—there is a happy medium! A wide range of stylish and oh-so-functional workout clothing is available for the modest dresser. If you haven’t tried an athletic skirt, you are missing out!
As modest clothing evolves, it has started to cover (ha!) all aspects of our lives. Modest clothing extends beyond longer skirts and shorter V’s. Women want to dress modestly not just for the office or a night out, but when they run, jog, climb and stretch.
Slight A-line Sports Skirt
Lots of great products are on the market now, solving the problem of how to exercise in something other than a tank top and biker shorts.
For example: the athletic skirt. This is generally a skirt/pants combo, giving you the comfort and flexibility of workout pants, while modestly covering you in a skirt of the same stretchy fabric. Athletic skirts that are slightly A-line give you room to move and—just as important—look super cute! And because the athletic skirt looks like a regular skirt, you can wear it to run an errand without drawing strange looks. Also a must-have: A crewneck workout shirt that extends to your elbows or wrists, made out that awesome keep-you-cool material.
Loose Fitting Yoga Pants
Yoga pants are another great option. Generally, yoga pants are slightly looser and not as form-fitting as regular black leggings, but still allow you to move and stretch. Yoga pants or leggings can also easily be worn under a comfortable knit skirt. Exercise easily, without compromising your high fashion standards.
I have found that these athletic skirts have actually changed my life. I no longer have to fashion my own uncomfortable skirt + pants combo, or sit out an activity because I can’t find a way to dress appropriately. These easy-fitting, stylish, covered-up options allow me to participate in any exercise activity—indoors or out—that my heart desires.
Sports skirts and modest sports shirts go beyond fulfilling my desire to dress modestly—they allow me to participate fully in all of life’s great adventures.
You want to dress your little ones in cute, modest clothing. Your kids just want to dress themselves. Encourage their independence AND guarantee a matching, modest outfit. We’ll tell you how.
To pretty much guarantee your children can pick out their own clothes all by themselves AND look presentable and modest, I have two words for you: Neutral bottoms.
This is a great trick I discovered years ago. With plain bottoms—knee-length denim skirts or jeans are a great example—your kids can spice it up with colorful tops, but still coordinate. (Though my daughter does have an interesting habit of pairing neutrals with neutrals. “If I wear a brown skirt, I should wear a brown shirt.” Yes, if you are dressing up like dirt.)
Tips for Easy Self-Dressing
- Avoid “outfits.” Stay away from any skirt+ shirt or pants + shirt combo. I dislike “outfits” because the colors and patterns are designed to look good only together, so you can’t pair them with a different top or bottom. This is limiting! I protest! And it’s a morning fashion disaster waiting to happen, because you just know one of the pieces will be AWOL. (Tip: It was used as a blanket for a stuffed animal, fell behind your child’s bed when they were “cleaning up” and is serving as the local community center for a population of dust bunnies.)
- Knee-length denim skirts. Many schools require modest length skirts for girls. Or maybe you just hate the child-in-a-miniskirt look. Either way, there are plenty of knee-length denim skirts (or longer lengths) to choose from. Denim, truly, is a girl’s best friend—it goes with anything, and during the colder months, it looks great with a cute pair of leggings underneath.
- Sport skirts. For a change from denim and a softer feel, go for a versatile and functional knee-length “sport” skirt. Sport skirts are made of a soft knit material and move easily. In shades of blues, brown, black or gray, your daughter can pair it with a brightly colored shirt and be ready for an action-packed day.
- Jeans. Like the denim skirt, a good pair of jeans is a must-have for boys. It’s easy to coordinate with shirts and very comfortable. A dark wash of jeans could even be appropriate for a more formal occasion. (Really! Try pairing a dark pair of jeans with a button-down shirt and see how debonair he looks. Sunglasses not included.)
What are your tried and true kid-dressing tips?
The school year is about the end, and summer is just around the corner. Hooray! No more rushing to prepare school lunches and waking up at the break of dawn for carpool! Now it is my time to relax. No wait, I almost forgot that it is time for summer camp! Usually during this time, I panic about the preparations for my kids‘ summer camp. My eldest kids usually go to sleep away camp for nearly 2 months, so I have many things to organize and buy. I have to be especially prudent and plan ahead of time, so I don’t wind up in the same unfortunate situation as last year. Last year, I left buying all the summer camp clothing at the last minute, which resulted in not finding everything and my kids throwing fits. This year, I’m very proud of myself. I put together a list with the help of my kids, listing all the things we need to buy for camp.
At the top of my summer camp clothing essentials were casual and sports skirts. Camp is all about casual and comfort is the key. Knee length casual cotton skirts are great for summer camp as they are very cool and comfortable. Playing sports can be tricky while wearing modest clothing, but there are athletic skirts that are comfortable, flexible, and modest.
I originally forgot to include sports skirts on my list. Luckily, my daughter reminded me to about getting a couple sports skirts, since laundry is not done that often in camp. The mesh sports skirt is fun as it looks just like mesh basketball shorts. The French terry Lycra one has some stretch and is great for running, walking, and sport. Modest running skirts are also on the list, but hard to find, so start looking early. I bought a running skirt with built — in leggings which is super comfortable. Now my daughters can enjoy rock climbing and playing sports without any fear of being exposed!
Enjoy an active summer!