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Simple Living, Simple Dress

Lovina and family are spending today butchering chickens, which they've been feeding and raising over the past month or so.  It's messy work, but by doing so, A) they know where their meat is coming from and what is going into it, and B) that type of hard physical work really does draw Amish families closer.  There is a division of labor that teaches even the youngest children that they can play an important role in something larger, thus fostering a good work ethic and responsibility.  Lovina's youngest children will pluck the chickens, while the older ones will help gut them.  While this sounds gross, it's just typical rural life for an average Amish family and it really contributes to the "social fabric" of the Amish order.  Meanwhile, in this same vein, there is a great article/blog entry with Plenty Magazine that just describes how well the Amish do the whole "self-sufficiency" thing.  It fit right in with the Eichers butchering chickens today.

Lastly, what to dress plainly?  The whole dust-up in Texas involving the Fundamentalist Latter Day Saint sect really brought plain clothes to the forefront since their photos were splashed all over the place.  Now you can buy those plain dresses yourself directly from them.  The link also references a good source of plain clothing designed with Amish people in mind if you can't stomach the thought of funding the FDLS.

 


lillyofthevalley's picture
Re: Simple Living, Simple Dress

I thank you for the links.  My family too practices modest dress(due to our religious beliefs).  I have not purchased any dresses online yet due to the price....but, would love to buy some Mommy and me matching outfits.  I do, however, seem to have good runs at a local thrift store here.  It is run by a church so a lot of women who dress plain will donate back to them.  So that is where I buy my dresses and skirts.  I prefer things that are loose fitting and long.  I wear nothing above my ankles.  I do like denim jumpers and jean skirts.  They are a main staple in my wardrobe.  As for my hair..I do not cut it and it is long.  I do not wear it up or in a bun...I have tried head coverings in the past though(I feel the Lord is leading me into this direction).  My daughter loves dresses and that what she wears as well.  She gets around like any other child playing...I do put shorts underneth during the summer or pants underneth or thick leggings for her in the winter.  She does have one set of over alls that we let her wear at her grandparents house due to all the bugs that will tote you off there. I noticed all the questions and answers going on in this post and loved how open communication was.  You never know til you ask:)  Great job ladies!  

"He will turn again, he will have compassion upon us; he will subdue our iniquities; and thou wilt cast all their sins into the depths of the sea." - Micah 7:19

Stay at home wife and mommy!

LuvMaerz's picture
Re: Simple Living, Simple Dress

"Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, but today is a gift... that's why they call it the present."

 Thanks for the info.  I enjoy reading about this sort of thing :-)

Curious about head coverings... what exactly are they?  Are they those white, net-looking little bonnet things like the Mennonite women wear?

Re: Simple Living, Simple Dress

I think butchering chickens is a thing of the past for most folks, but I still do
it every year and my daughters that live in the country do it to.. we get together
and clean chickens together...good family time. I guess I grew up with chickens
jumping with out there heads and thought nothing of it, because I enjoy fried chicken
so well. I wont by a chicken in the store to fry...not the same once your spolied
with your own. If you cant stand the thought of home butchering but love home raised
chicken meat do some checking around, some people do costome butchering and selling.
Times were tough when I was growing up, so home butchering was a way of life if you
wanted to eat. Guess thats what God intened livestock for..to feed His people !

lorraine stoddard's picture
Re: Simple Living, Simple Dress

When I was a kid I spent 2 weeks on a farm in Sawyer,Michagain.  I seen how the chickens were plucked and butchered.  I seen the chickens running around without their heads.  I didn't eat chicken for about 25 years after that .

Re: Simple Living, Simple Dress

Hello, I wear mostly plain clothing, including jumpers, but I do own a few Mennonite style dresses.There are a few online sites that sell plain clothing. "Plainly dressed" is very good and I have ordered from them in the past. I also have ordered a plain dress from anabaptist bookstore.org where you can  click on "seamstress". There is also a very reasonably priced site, "Katie's Mercantile", that sells modest dresses for women and girls. Most modest clothing are made in a choice of fabric and you can order them with a "cape" (front panel of fabric) or without one. They are not cheap, but from Katie you can buy a plain dress for less than $30. There are also sites that sell patterns which is, of course, more cost effective. Plain dresses are just that, plain. They are usually to the ankle and have long or 3/4 sleeves with or without buttons. They are modest dresses that do not show much skin, of course. But they are charming, and in keeping with a Christian lifestyle.  In addition, these sites sell head coverings as well. Plainly Dressed sells a variety of head covering styles. Katie's sells those made by their local Mennonites who want it known that the head coverings are for prayer, and not to be used as a costume prop. Susan

Re: Simple Living, Simple Dress

Well, Staib, I'm with you. I have strong pacifist leanings, so I can't kill a chicken, deer, cow, etc...I don't think a guy's a wimp if you can't/won't do that, I think we just all have different sensitivity levels and if you're able to go out and take down a deer to feed your family, more power to you.....

Re: Simple Living

When I was much younger we had chickens and rabbits which were for food. There was nothing more horrifying then seeing chickens running around with their heads cut off. I understand the whole aspect of knowing where food comes from but I never could handle taking a life even when I was 5. My family was living in Norfolk Virginia(Dad was in the Navy back then), and we went crabbing while he was on shore leave. Well we caught crabs but I had it in mind that they were pets. We had a kiddy pool and I insisted that they were to be kept in there. There they were all lined up. Well that night they disappeared. They tasted really good but I hadn't put the two together. I was told the next day that they escaped and scuttled back to the ocean. Otherwise I would have been very upset. I'm not against hunting, fishing or slaughtering livestock for food. I just have never overcome that sensitivity towards life. 

dcharrison's picture
Re: Simple Living

I can relate to this entirely!  My family raised rabbits to eat and I was the lucky one who got to hold them by their hind feet while my mother killed & dressed them out.  I never could bring myself to eat them!

I tried getting some chickens to kill and freeze.  Did fine with the first couple, but then the rest I ended up calling my parents to come get them.  I couldn't do it anymore.

I had no problem though eating the ducks, geese & such that my mother dressed out for hunters on shares.  Guess it had to do more with caring for the animals to me.  If I never fed them, etc., then I was able to handle it.  I know - wouldn't make a good farm wife or pioneer!

Cindy/KS

Re: Simple Living

My brother raised a sheep as a 4-H project that we were suppose to eat when it was over.  Everyone in the family became attach to the sheep and instead of having a pet dog, we had a pet sheep Tongue out

LuvMaerz's picture
Re: Simple Living, Simple Dress

"Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, but today is a gift... that's why they call it the present."

 

I checked out the plainlydress.com website, and there are several options.  It seems the dresses range from $50 up, but I suppose that isn't terribly expensive considering the cost of material, time, etc.  Very interesting!

 I know that there are some ladies that frequent the board who choose to dress in a plain style.  I am curious what type of dress you like to wear, etc. 

KJuneBug's picture
Re: Simple Living, Simple Dress

Jumpers are my favorite.  I have a couple favorite patterns that I tweak and use different fabrics.  Mostly for everyday I use denim.  I think I like them over skirts since your double covered on the top half.

If I wear a skirt I wear two shirts or a sweater in the winter.

I have to have pockets, I have some skirts and a few jumpers that I made with no pockets, that drives me crazy! 

$50 isn't too terribly high for a dress.  Good fabric can be kind of expensive. I was just checking the website, I am going to research it now. 

Also try this website  http://www.modestsewingpatterns.com/ for patterns.  Type in modest sewing patterns in your search engine.

The best place to start dressing modestly is to read your Bible, especially Titus, 1 Corinthians 11 and 1 Timothy 2:9 and pray.  I was convicted to dresses only about 5 years ago partly as a need to set an example for our three daughters.

LuvMaerz's picture
Re: Simple Living, Simple Dress

"Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, but today is a gift... that's why they call it the present."

KJuneBug, and also Sueuprising and anyone else, I am just curious...(and I hope not to sound rude, but I ask only because I am interested and want to learn)....

Do you ever have any issues (or your kids) with people asking about your way of dress or even giving you a hard time?  I know some people out there have no couth.  Also, what kind of clothing do your boys and husbands wear?  I guess the only people I have seen dress "plainly" besides Amish or Mennonite, would probably be the Duggars...is that right?

When I worked in the hospital, often we would have a family where the women/girls only wore long, denim skirts (but anything on top, t-shirts and whatever) and wore their hair in buns.  I was told that they were of a specific religion, but I cannot remember which one.  There was a nurse on one of the floors that I assumed to be the same, who only wore long white skirts (instead of the usual scrub pants) and always had her hair up in a bun.

Re: Simple Living, Simple Dress

I'm a bit unusual because I am a plain'dressed Anglican priest (in Canada). The Church of England has a long history of women in leadership and preaching offices even when they couldn't officially be ordained, so as a traditional woman, called to serve on the altar, I felt this is where I belonged.

BUT being plain creates some interesting situations. Do I cover while serving the altar (men don't)? Yes, I do, with a round velvet cap like a Jewish kippah. When I veil in church or on the street people call me "Sister" which is no insult - people still respect nuns but they wonder why I'm holding hands with a priest!! (My husband.)

The snide and critical comments from both men and women can be hurtful if I let them be...most are just curious and I am willing to explain that you don't have to be Anabaptist or Conservative Quaker to be Plain.

The prayer covering gets the most stares (with the possible exception of the black bonnet) but the boots - high plain and dark - get the most questions and comments! I think women love the boots. They are no-nonsense granny boots. They say "we're no frivolous footwear."

Again, sometimes the best thing to do is ignore the comments and stares. My husband will come to my defense when he feels called to do so, and most people just don't argue with him. he is a plaindressed Anglican priest but the black shirt and black pants don't get much notice unless he wears the Quaker hat at the same time.

Mother Magdalena

KJuneBug's picture
Re: Simple Living, Simple Dress

I don't wear my hair up in a bun, it isn't that long and I color it once in a while too. My dresses aren't "plain" in style, but are conservative and modest.  I try to pick different colors and fabrics but I always end up liking the same color, (blue, usually).  When I first started in dresses only I went to the Wal-mart and found a some simple knit dresses, I bought three in the long sleeve style that winter, I wear them now mostly at home, in the winter I add a turtle neck under and leggings or long underwear, and knee socks to keep warm.  I then went back to the Wal-mart and found a short sleeved knt dress and bought three of those.  They are know getting a bit worn and I mostly wear those at home too.  I will wear a white tank top underneath, so the dress isn't so clingy.  I wear bare legs with flip flops or sandals.  When I first went to dresses only I purchased a couple skorts, but later decided that they were too short.  I have made a number of jumpers for myself and I purchase plain or flowered (no words) knit shirts ususally from Sears.  I have a couple sleeveless tops and tank tops, I just double up on the tank tops, and only choose those when it is really hot, which is pretty rare here.  I have had to just figure out what stores have modest styles, and I do have several skirts some denim, some courderoy. And I have a skirted swim suit.

The thing that most surprised me is that I was not stopped from doing anything because I wear dresses!  Up until last month when we were at Bible Camp and we wanted to go horse back riding, I borrowed a pair of capri pants from a friend for that.  So, I think I am going to add a pair of those just for times like that.  Some ladies will make the gaucho style pant for these situations, then they are still long.     

Yes, people think I/we are strange, partly because this is a big liberal city, so we stand out.  But it doesn't bother me anymore.  Even at our church, we are the ONLY "dresses only" family.  When people ask I just tell them my testimony and how the Lord convicted me to do this.  My husband loves it!  He loves that I (and the girls) am dressed modestly and femininly and that our girls look like girls.  I love when I am out in a store and see other dresses only ladies, we always give each other the once over and I always think, Yeah, there is more of us out there.  Also on our trip, in your neck of the woods we weren't as odd, there are definately more conservative modest ladies in the mid west and south.

It is easy dressing my little girls, I have a jumper pattern from B&B Blueprints for an everyday  jumper.  I have made them skorts for bike riding, it is dangerous for them to ride in their regular dresses as the legnth can get caught.  And I have made them very girly sleevless tops and bloomer type shorts, they wore those horseback riding recently.   They have skirted suits also. Our oldest daughter wore skirts, then when she was 18 she pretty much went back to pants, shorts and jeans, she knows we don't like it very much, she does dress very modestly and that really was the impression that we hoped for her, so that she would make wise choices.  Someday she may end up dresses only.  The girls do have long hair, mostly they pull it back into a pony tail. 

What do my boys and my husband wear?  Well the for the boys I buy plain colored T-shirts and shorts in the summer.  Longer shorts, they like the cargo ones with all the pockets.  Dressing the boys is easier than the girls.  In the winter they wear jeans, the plain 5 pocket style from Sears or JCP.  I buy the least expensive ones as they burn holes in the knees, if they come from Sears and they haven't outgrown them we can get a replacement pair free.  They like long sleeved T-shirts for winter.  Sometimes we will surprise them with a sports team logo and we did get shirts along the way on our trip, one from John Deere and the other from Louisville Slugger (they were both needing shirts before our trip so this was a way to help that out!)  My Husband pretty much is the same at home.  For work he just wears khaki pants and a button dress shirt or a polo.  Thursday's are tie days, so he always looks especially handsome those days!!  And to church the boys and my husband wear dress shirts and ties, except if it is super hot, then my husband will go to a short sleeved dress shirt.  It is a huge treat if we let the boys wear shorts to church on those days, now that they are older we don't let them do that as often!

Hope you find this helpful, Luv!

KJunebug 

       

dcharrison's picture
Re: Simple Living, Simple Dress

This sounds similar to the United Pentecostal church that I grew up in.  All the women were to wear dresses or skirts blow the knee, no pants whatsoever, and once you were past childhood, most wore their hair up in some fashion.  If you were a teenager, it was acceptable to wear your hair down, but only if it was curled.  Skirts or dresses didn't have to be plain as such, but did have to be below the knee, sleeves at least to the elbow.  No cleavage.

Cindy/KS

LuvMaerz's picture
Re: Simple Living, Simple Dress

"Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, but today is a gift... that's why they call it the present."

Right!  I thought it was Pentecostal, but wasn't 100% sure.  Thanks :-)

dcharrison's picture
Re: Simple Living, Simple Dress

You're welcome!

Cindy/KS

Re: Simple Living, Simple Dress

I remember helping my Dad butcher chickens when I was a little girl. We also raised rabbits for food and I helped with that also. It was funny when the neighor boys were old enough to hunt rabbits they would bring them to me for cleaning since they didn'know how. I miss not having rabbit to eat. When I visit my brother he will make one meal of rabbit just for me. yum.

LuvMaerz's picture
Re: Simple Living, Simple Dress

"Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, but today is a gift... that's why they call it the present."

I have a couple of cute lil hoppers peeking in my living room window right now... but I don't eat them, I just let them use my front yard as breeding grounds!  LOL

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