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  #46  
Old Jul 13, '12, 9:12 am
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Default Re: Are sleeveless shirts/dresses really that bad for mass? (examples included)

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Originally Posted by L piperatus View Post
My thoughts exactly. There's going to be cleavage showing. I truly don't get it why do designers make dresses with these deep V-cuts in the front.

I can tell as a guy, it makes it extremely difficult to carry out a conversation with a lady wearing something like these V-cuts. I had a female assistant, and I simply didn't know where to look while talking to her. If I look her constantly in the eye, it's too formal and rigid, it doesn't foster a relaxed atmosphere. It used to be that when talking to someone in a relaxed manner, you look at the person, mostly below the eye level, and you only make eye contact from time to time. It used to be... But if I look at her below the eye level, my eyes are going to constantly fall on her cleavage and on her partially exposed breasts. Most men are taller than most women, and if a man looks casually at a woman, at a downward angle and below her eye level, that's exactly what he is going to see: partially exposed breasts - if she is wearing this V-cut stuff.

So, where else could I look at, with my female assistant? Often her midriff was also exposed... So, I looked out the window, away from her, while explaining her what kind of procedures we were going to carry out that day. I was this mean boss who wouldn't look at his assitant. This disconnected guy who looks through the window, into the distance, while talking to people...
You probably need to revise your thinking here a bit. We are in training sessions for more effective communication among employees and improved customer satisfaction, and the number one rule is making eye contact with the customer, employee, or the person you are talking to. Not making eye contact signals inattention and leads to people thinking one's mind is not on what they have to say or the situation at hand, or the other person does not really care. That may not be the case, but it does give that impression.

You can learn to make eye contact without appearing to stare, and avoid looking at body parts you don't want to. Try it sometime and see if it does not make a difference.
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  #47  
Old Jul 13, '12, 9:28 am
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Default Re: Are sleeveless shirts/dresses really that bad for mass? (examples included)

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Originally Posted by L piperatus View Post
My thoughts exactly. There's going to be cleavage showing. I truly don't get it why do designers make dresses with these deep V-cuts in the front.

I can tell as a guy, it makes it extremely difficult to carry out a conversation with a lady wearing something like these V-cuts. I had a female assistant, and I simply didn't know where to look while talking to her. If I look her constantly in the eye, it's too formal and rigid, it doesn't foster a relaxed atmosphere. It used to be that when talking to someone in a relaxed manner, you look at the person, mostly below the eye level, and you only make eye contact from time to time. It used to be... But if I look at her below the eye level, my eyes are going to constantly fall on her cleavage and on her partially exposed breasts. Most men are taller than most women, and if a man looks casually at a woman, at a downward angle and below her eye level, that's exactly what he is going to see: partially exposed breasts - if she is wearing this V-cut stuff.

So, where else could I look at, with my female assistant? Often her midriff was also exposed... So, I looked out the window, away from her, while explaining her what kind of procedures we were going to carry out that day. I was this mean boss who wouldn't look at his assitant. This disconnected guy who looks through the window, into the distance, while talking to people...
A deep V-neck is also a pretty easy fix. Put a layer underneath.

Also, and this is not aimed at you L piperatus, its just a general rant, if you see someone wearing something distracting/that you consider immodest do not assume that they are intentionally dressing immodestly. Sorry, I realize no one here has been doing that at all, but it is just so frustrating to here people claim that they know exactly what is going on in the minds of all/most women who don't dress according to their standards. So for anyone reading this thread who realizes that they have this tendency, stop it. You have no idea what their intentions are or if they even realize what they are wearing actually looks like. Especially if they are Catholic or Christian or some other religion/non-religion and trying to live a good life, they really are not likely to be purposefully trying to make men lust after them. Ok, rant off.
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  #48  
Old Jul 13, '12, 10:14 am
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Default Re: Are sleeveless shirts/dresses really that bad for mass? (examples included)

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Originally Posted by thewanderer View Post
A deep V-neck is also a pretty easy fix. Put a layer underneath.
The other thing that you can do if you have decent sewing skills is to create a panel to cover the area, similar to "fooler" tops so it looks like you are wearing a layer underneath, but you actually made it part of the shirt. (though you may want to practice on a couple thrift store tops first just to get the technique down). At least, that's what I would do I sure don't want to be wearing two layers on a hot day - our Church is not fortunate enough to be air conditioned
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  #49  
Old Jul 13, '12, 2:17 pm
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Default Re: Are sleeveless shirts/dresses really that bad for mass? (examples included)

I have to tell you there have been times I've 'accidentally' worn cleavage shirts. Call me clueless but often I'll look directly in the mirror and if I don't see cleavage in the mirror I'll wear the shirt but then I'll happen to glance down and YIKES!!!

So I would agree with what another poster said. Don't assume the woman is doing this on purpose.

Mind you I've also had girlfriends who would ONLY wear cleavage shirts. It was very calculated. Not all girls who show cleavage are that type of girl though.
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  #50  
Old Jul 13, '12, 2:42 pm
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Default Re: Are sleeveless shirts/dresses really that bad for mass? (examples included)

The Vatican has a reason for the covering up. Figure out their reason and you get an answer as to what is wise and unwise to wear.
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  #51  
Old Jul 14, '12, 1:13 pm
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Default Re: Are sleeveless shirts/dresses really that bad for mass? (examples included)

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Originally Posted by thewanderer View Post
A deep V-neck is also a pretty easy fix. Put a layer underneath.

Also, and this is not aimed at you L piperatus, its just a general rant, if you see someone wearing something distracting/that you consider immodest do not assume that they are intentionally dressing immodestly. Sorry, I realize no one here has been doing that at all, but it is just so frustrating to here people claim that they know exactly what is going on in the minds of all/most women who don't dress according to their standards. So for anyone reading this thread who realizes that they have this tendency, stop it. You have no idea what their intentions are or if they even realize what they are wearing actually looks like. Especially if they are Catholic or Christian or some other religion/non-religion and trying to live a good life, they really are not likely to be purposefully trying to make men lust after them. Ok, rant off.
Women have a RESPONSIBILITY not to go around with their parts hanging out.

Now before you get all huffy with me, know that I am a woman. Women are not children, nor are they too stupid to look in the mirror and put on clothing appropriate to an occasion. Carelessness is not an excuse. There is no excuse for the things I see walking around these days.
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  #52  
Old Jul 14, '12, 1:27 pm
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Default Re: Are sleeveless shirts/dresses really that bad for mass? (examples included)

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Originally Posted by johnnyjones View Post
The Vatican has a reason for the covering up. Figure out their reason and you get an answer as to what is wise and unwise to wear.
OK, but with the Vatican you have to consider that there are the issues of protocol and propriety, rather than modesty only. For instance, women who meet the Pope in private audience are supposed to wear a black veil, excepting Catholic monarchs, who are allowed to wear a white veil. That hardly implies that women have to wear black veils under other circumstances, or that they are forbidden to wear white ones. The rules concerning the dress code at the Vatican in general can be assumed to have been made under similar assumptions.

If the Vatican wants to let all of Christendom know some particular behavior is expected or forbidden, the Vatican is quite capable of letting that be known. For that reason, I would consider the rules for the Vatican are something to be taken as a model of propriety that might be taken up elsewhere, but not a universally binding rule of propriety nor a decree of modesty that is binding at all times and in all places.
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  #53  
Old Jul 14, '12, 3:56 pm
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Default Re: Are sleeveless shirts/dresses really that bad for mass? (examples included)

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Originally Posted by iloveangels View Post
Women have a RESPONSIBILITY not to go around with their parts hanging out.

Now before you get all huffy with me, know that I am a woman. Women are not children, nor are they too stupid to look in the mirror and put on clothing appropriate to an occasion. Carelessness is not an excuse. There is no excuse for the things I see walking around these days.
Did I anywhere say that women are not responsible for dressing modestly? No, so I don't know why you are responding so harshly. All I am saying is that you shouldn't judge a persons intentions, or the state of their soul, by what they are wearing, because whether you like it or not, not everyone is aware of all the things to look out for in clothes. I used to wear a blouse when I was younger that I saw a picture of a few years ago and was absolutely shocked to realize how see-through it was. I had had absolutely no idea of how see through it could be in the wrong lighting. This is not the only such thing that has happened to me and others that I know. And not everyone will have the same idea of what counts as dressing modestly. Just because you think they are dressing immodestly doesn't mean that they think so. Maybe they're wrong, but they are not necessarily hussies out to drag men down to the depths of hell through tempting them to lust. Now I don't know whether or not you think such things when you see immodestly dressed women, I'm not trying to claim anything about you, I am simply clarifying what I was saying.
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  #54  
Old Jul 14, '12, 5:03 pm
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Default Re: Are sleeveless shirts/dresses really that bad for mass? (examples included)

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Originally Posted by gh4 View Post
I'm a woman and I'm of the age where I would NEVER EVER IN A MILLION years let anyone see my upper arms, With age comes a certain loss of muscle tone in most women, regardless of their size.
And quite frankly I find it gross to see arms like that, my own included. If you have wonderful well toned arms, then by all means wear a sleeveless blouse or dress. If not, then please wear a sleeve.
Whatever the state of your muscle tone, some things are just immodest. We shouldn't confuse 'attractive' with 'modest'. Blouses like the OP linked to are modest for everyone, as long as the fit is right (ie, no side-view flashing). If we say that because someone is fit or young or 'cute' that they can wear fashions that aren't really modest, than we are contrinbuting to the problem. Then modesty is defined, not by what is objectively showing or not showing, but by what we consider unattractive to be showing.

I really don't want to see anyone's underwear (bras and worse), cleavage (anywhere or any kind), hip bones, or upper legs, I don't care how toned any of it is!
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  #55  
Old Jul 14, '12, 6:20 pm
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Default Re: Are sleeveless shirts/dresses really that bad for mass? (examples included)

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Originally Posted by EasterJoy View Post
OK, but with the Vatican you have to consider that there are the issues of protocol and propriety, rather than modesty only. For instance, women who meet the Pope in private audience are supposed to wear a black veil, excepting Catholic monarchs, who are allowed to wear a white veil. That hardly implies that women have to wear black veils under other circumstances, or that they are forbidden to wear white ones. The rules concerning the dress code at the Vatican in general can be assumed to have been made under similar assumptions.

If the Vatican wants to let all of Christendom know some particular behavior is expected or forbidden, the Vatican is quite capable of letting that be known. For that reason, I would consider the rules for the Vatican are something to be taken as a model of propriety that might be taken up elsewhere, but not a universally binding rule of propriety nor a decree of modesty that is binding at all times and in all places.
Your response still does not address the "why." Why is the Vatican saying the parts indicated should be covered up? You use the words "protocol" and "propriety" as if those words give answers. Those words are easily interchangeable with the word "rules". The rules are that you cover up.

I do see where you are going. Some restaurants may have rules as to what to wear but it is not based in modesty but a "dress code". But a church is not a restaurant. We would then have to say that the Vatican is a different church than all other Catholic churches. Why is the dress different at the "head church" but not other churches? Is not the same blessed sacrament there as at your local church? Yes it is a dress code, but why? Why is skin showing there different then another church? The Vatican as you say are capable of giving a decree as to what to wear, but their model is very telling of common sense and it would seem is based in more than a dress code unless it's structure is better than your local church.
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  #56  
Old Jul 14, '12, 7:19 pm
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Default Re: Are sleeveless shirts/dresses really that bad for mass? (examples included)

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Originally Posted by johnnyjones View Post
Your response still does not address the "why." Why is the Vatican saying the parts indicated should be covered up? You use the words "protocol" and "propriety" as if those words give answers. Those words are easily interchangeable with the word "rules". The rules are that you cover up.

I do see where you are going. Some restaurants may have rules as to what to wear but it is not based in modesty but a "dress code". But a church is not a restaurant. We would then have to say that the Vatican is a different church than all other Catholic churches. Why is the dress different at the "head church" but not other churches? Is not the same blessed sacrament there as at your local church? Yes it is a dress code, but why? Why is skin showing there different then another church? The Vatican as you say are capable of giving a decree as to what to wear, but their model is very telling of common sense and it would seem is based in more than a dress code unless it's structure is better than your local church.
I mean that we are talking protocol, not morality. There isn't a "why' required for protocol. It is what it is, and and the "why" behind what protocol demands in any particular place is usually the pleasure of the monarch or executive governing body or a long-standing tradition. I suppose there was a time when that tradition was unwritten, but in these times official protocol is more specifically articulated, in order to avoid unintentional offense.

Vatican City is not just a "different church." It is an independent sovereign nation, and as such it can have its own local rules in the secular realm. At my last check, Berkeley, California (not an independent city state, but you wouldn't know it if you lived there) allowed public nudity, while on the other end of the spectrum (though by no means on the farthest end!!), Vatican City has stricter standards. The Holy See can define local protocol for Vatican City without implying that this ought to be the protocol everywhere. Rather, it can use its special protocol to express the special nature of the grounds of Vatican City. Again: The Church has a Congregation for Divine Worship, and communication of universal expectations isn't usually done by expecting the faithful to be mind-readers. Sometimes, the Holy See allows local bishops some room to be the heads of their own churches!

Let me quote from that great secular authority () Wikipedia:
"The government of Vatican City has a unique structure. The Pope is the sovereign of the state. Legislative authority is vested in the Pontifical Commission for Vatican City State, a body of cardinals appointed by the Pope for five-year periods. Executive power is in the hands of the President of that commission, assisted by the General Secretary and Deputy General Secretary. The state's foreign relations are entrusted to the Holy See's Secretariat of State and diplomatic service. Nevertheless, the pope has full and absolute executive, legislative and judicial power over Vatican City. He is currently the only absolute monarch in Europe."

Now, if you are saying that you want your local bishop to use the Holy City as a model, there is nothing wrong with that. The local bishop probably could set this kind of protocol for the Catholic churches in his diocese, either as a guideline or as a rule. That would be up to him, though. That is currently the bishop's perogative. It would also be his perogative to set a more or less broad set of boundaries, and to let his priests use their pastoral judgement when it came to how to communicate those boundaries. I think that is currently what most bishops find the most pastorally appropriate way to address the issue.

Start with your priest, ask what's up in your diocese. If you don't think he's describing things quite fully, you can ask at the Office of Worship (or the equivalent) at your local diocesan office. Be loyal to and respectful of your pastor as you do it, though. There is such a thing as being so intent on pursuing one virtue that you fall into unintentional sins.

Last edited by EasterJoy; Jul 14, '12 at 7:32 pm.
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  #57  
Old Jul 14, '12, 9:27 pm
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Default Re: Are sleeveless shirts/dresses really that bad for mass? (examples included)

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Originally Posted by EasterJoy View Post
I mean that we are talking protocol, not morality. There isn't a "why' required for protocol. It is what it is, and and the "why" behind what protocol demands in any particular place is usually the pleasure of the monarch or executive governing body or a long-standing tradition. I suppose there was a time when that tradition was unwritten, but in these times official protocol is more specifically articulated, in order to avoid unintentional offense.

Vatican City is not just a "different church." It is an independent sovereign nation, and as such it can have its own local rules in the secular realm. At my last check, Berkeley, California (not an independent city state, but you wouldn't know it if you lived there) allowed public nudity, while on the other end of the spectrum (though by no means on the farthest end!!), Vatican City has stricter standards. The Holy See can define local protocol for Vatican City without implying that this ought to be the protocol everywhere. Rather, it can use its special protocol to express the special nature of the grounds of Vatican City. Again: The Church has a Congregation for Divine Worship, and communication of universal expectations isn't usually done by expecting the faithful to be mind-readers. Sometimes, the Holy See allows local bishops some room to be the heads of their own churches!

Let me quote from that great secular authority () Wikipedia:
"The government of Vatican City has a unique structure. The Pope is the sovereign of the state. Legislative authority is vested in the Pontifical Commission for Vatican City State, a body of cardinals appointed by the Pope for five-year periods. Executive power is in the hands of the President of that commission, assisted by the General Secretary and Deputy General Secretary. The state's foreign relations are entrusted to the Holy See's Secretariat of State and diplomatic service. Nevertheless, the pope has full and absolute executive, legislative and judicial power over Vatican City. He is currently the only absolute monarch in Europe."

Now, if you are saying that you want your local bishop to use the Holy City as a model, there is nothing wrong with that. The local bishop probably could set this kind of protocol for the Catholic churches in his diocese, either as a guideline or as a rule. That would be up to him, though. That is currently the bishop's perogative. It would also be his perogative to set a more or less broad set of boundaries, and to let his priests use their pastoral judgement when it came to how to communicate those boundaries. I think that is currently what most bishops find the most pastorally appropriate way to address the issue.

Start with your priest, ask what's up in your diocese. If you don't think he's describing things quite fully, you can ask at the Office of Worship (or the equivalent) at your local diocesan office. Be loyal to and respectful of your pastor as you do it, though. There is such a thing as being so intent on pursuing one virtue that you fall into unintentional sins.
There is a why for protocol, you are mistaken. Some protocol may be ancient as you infer and some may even have forgotten why it was instituted. But, it has an origin. A night club may say ties are required for men. If someone asks why, there is an answer. Responding to a cocky adult who questions the tie wearing a night club employee may give the answer as you did with, "it is what it is" to end it there without explanation. But actually the dress code may be to keep uniformity or give the appearance of "looking proper." My point is the Vatican has a certain perception of what is proper as to dress.

Whether the Vatican is a sovereign nation or not only applies to the fact that it has made it's own rules but it does not detract from from it being an example. I have never said it is a mandate that churches must follow what the Vatican does, but what I have maintained is that it is something respectable and wise to look to when confusion arises. Is the Vatican some strange entity we can not draw examples from?

And no, I am not saying that my local Bishop should institute what the Vatican does. I'm not sure how you would conclude that. I might opine to my parish priest or Bishop that the power of example has many times helped in uncertain matters. Again I push no mandate but only suggest how one might consider dressing at mass. I have no conflict but I think that it wouldn't hurt for you to ask your local priest what they think of the Vatican dress code. I suspect they could say, "the Vatican is the Vatican" but I don't think they will ever say, "never look to them."
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Old Jul 14, '12, 9:52 pm
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Default Re: Are sleeveless shirts/dresses really that bad for mass? (examples included)

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There is a why for protocol, you are mistaken. Some protocol may be ancient as you infer and some may even have forgotten why it was instituted. But, it has an origin. A night club may say ties are required for men. If someone asks why, there is an answer. Responding to a cocky adult who questions the tie wearing a night club employee may give the answer as you did with, "it is what it is" to end it there without explanation. But actually the dress code may be to keep uniformity or give the appearance of "looking proper." My point is the Vatican has a certain perception of what is proper as to dress.

Whether the Vatican is a sovereign nation or not only applies to the fact that it has made it's own rules but it does not detract from from it being an example. I have never said it is a mandate that churches must follow what the Vatican does, but what I have maintained is that it is something respectable and wise to look to when confusion arises. Is the Vatican some strange entity we can not draw examples from?

And no, I am not saying that my local Bishop should institute what the Vatican does. I'm not sure how you would conclude that. I might opine to my parish priest or Bishop that the power of example has many times helped in uncertain matters. Again I push no mandate but only suggest how one might consider dressing at mass. I have no conflict but I think that it wouldn't hurt for you to ask your local priest what they think of the Vatican dress code. I suspect they could say, "the Vatican is the Vatican" but I don't think they will ever say, "never look to them."
Yes, of course there is a "why" for protocol, but it need not be intended to be a universally-applicable reason. There is no reason to conclude that Vatican City is trying to make itself a binding model for the Universal Church. Of course the cardinals want to set a good example, but that doesn't mean they are trying to say that anyone without that code is lax. I don't have to know the "why" of the Vatican City dress code to know that. I only have to know that if that is why, the Church is quite capable of saying so. The microphones are always on. If they want to say that, they'll say that.

I didn't say "never look to them", either. I'm saying that there is nothing that compels Vatican City to restrict itself to a code that it believes could be made the general rule for the entire Church. Therefore, the Vatican City dress code cannot be assumed to have been instituted for the purpose of becoming a general example for the Universal Church. Rather, we only know it is what they thought proper for the lands belonging to the Holy See. That is a very special piece of geography, enforcing a heightened dress code would be appropriate, and so that's all we know.
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Old Jul 14, '12, 9:57 pm
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Default Re: Are sleeveless shirts/dresses really that bad for mass? (examples included)

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Originally Posted by L piperatus View Post
So, where else could I look at, with my female assistant? Often her midriff was also exposed... So, I looked out the window, away from her, while explaining her what kind of procedures we were going to carry out that day. I was this mean boss who wouldn't look at his assitant. This disconnected guy who looks through the window, into the distance, while talking to people...
Ha ha. You really have to try to be less obvious. Fake it till you make it.
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Old Jul 14, '12, 10:26 pm
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Default Re: Are sleeveless shirts/dresses really that bad for mass? (examples included)

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Originally Posted by Ophelia23 View Post
The general rule of thumb for us ladies is, would you suggest Mary wear it?

That's what my mom always asked us. "Can you imagine mother Mary wearing this?"

As for your sleeveless examples, I am a definite yes. They look great, classy, modest... very nice!
I don't think your mother's way is a particularly helpful way of putting it.

I for one cannot imagine Mother Mary wearing purple silk, as in her day purple dye was extremely expensive, as was silk (which kinda still is today, but was much more so in her time).

Nor can I imagine Mother Mary exposing her ankles, let alone her calves.

Nor wearing high heeled shoes.

Nor makeup.

None of which means any purple, silk, high heels or makeup are things are inappropriate to wear NOW. Nor is it inappropriate to flash a bit of ankle or calf.

And I cannot imagine her wearing anything sleveless - except possibly to sleep in. But most people weren't rich enough to have extra sets of clothes just for sleeping.
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