Updated: Oct 25
I consider modest fashion to be an essential element of my personality and style. There will always be those who think my apparel makes me look old or unstylish, although, through my journey, I've learned that you can dress modestly and look entirely stylish and fashionable and even trendy! In response to multiple questions, I've chosen to share my modest journey, including how I came to discover and explore this beautiful way of dressing. Because I grew up in an Orthodox Jewish community, I'm used to seeing women dressed this way, but I never thought I'd appreciate and admire modesty the way I do now.
It's no secret that I admire and look up to one of my favorite aunts (sorry to my other lovely aunts!), who happens to be a major modest fashionista and one of my style icons. Along with my mom, my aunt has always been a style role model to me since I was a little girl. As my mother and I walked behind her on the day of her son's Bar Mitzvah, I remember my shocking look at my aunt's shoes and finally whispered to my mom, "Why does she have red on the bottoms of her shoes?" My mother clearly understood the significance of the red soles and labeled them "a very important shoe." At the time, I was astounded since I'd never seen anything like it before. However, once I grew a bit older, I learned that they were classic black Louboutin pumps and realized that they were, in fact, a remarkable shoe and, as my mom had said, very important! Fast forward a few years, and my aunt now paints over the legendary bright red sole on the bottom of each and every pair of Louboutin heels she owns to keep the shoe from looking too flashy and not to draw undue attention to herself and keep the shoe from appearing ostentatious and showy. I'm obviously not at that stage of modesty or humility (I mean, who would cover the iconic red sole of a precious pair of Louboutins?). However, even though I'd never do this (lol), the fact that she uses this ruse to disguise her expensive footwear is admirable. Every time I saw her growing up, she was (and still is) always perfectly put together, with a graceful and elegant flair that never compromises her modesty. I often wonder why she insists on wearing high heels nearly every day. I believe her impeccable sense of style has much to do with it. She's always been among some of my main modest fashion inspirations ever since I was that little girl in awe of her "very important" shoes. To this day, she conceals every inch of her body, and yet every outfit is flawlessly curated and refined, making her the perfect model for modest style!
As for my own growth in this area, it took me a long time to discover what is now considered my signature look. I've had a major fascination with all things fashion since I was a little kid. I used to sneak into my mom's closet, try on her high heels, and beg for the freedom to put together my own outfits for school. As I grew older, shopping in all the plus-size sections and stores like J.Jill and Talbots, I yearned for the day when I could wear fancy and colorful dresses, crystal button cardigans, and coats from more youthful and fun shops that I never believed I'd fit into.
After losing a substantial amount of weight, I thought to myself, "Wow, I can wear whatever I want now!" and shopped till I dropped! (much to my father's angst) I remember zipping up a slim-fitted backless mini dress in a size 6; I was so happy the silhouette fit my new body and thrilled to prove to those around me but mostly to myself that I finally fit in with the world. Even though I felt comfortable wearing the dress, it didn't show much because I was actually embarrassed to be seen in such a revealing look. All those years of hiding myself, I believed it was because I was ashamed of my size, but it soon became clear that modesty was just a part of who I was and now am.
Slowly but surely, I identified my individual style and what best suited my character. Fitting into that dress was an absolute joy, but I knew a modest girl was living inside me. After exploring a plethora of different fashion fads, trends, and looks, I fell in love with dresses. I wore jeans for about a year before acknowledging I wasn't a pants girl at all! I officially found my passion for classic, preppy, ladylike, and feminine styles.
My style niche was officially born, and I became known as "the dress girl." I'd take a floral midi over jeans any day, and my version of jeans is always a dress! Even though I still have a lot of growing to do, I mean, I am far from my aunt's level of modesty, I try to be a modern and modest girl to illustrate that dressing this way definitely does not imply looking dowdy, old-fashioned, unattractive or even unpopular with the current trends.
Modesty is an integral part of my personal style that I love sharing with others! It also slightly comes from many popular culture sources, including members of the Royal Family (sorry, I had to!) like Kate Middleton, Meghan Markle, and even The Queen, who has had a long-lasting impact on the fashion industry for literally decades. In those bright suits and large hats, she still manages to look composed and stylish; you all know how much I adore a matching statement, and she certainly knows how to do it well, even at the age of 95! Apart from the royals, there is a slew of celebrities, public figures, and real people in my life that I look up to (like my aunt described above) who prove that dressing modestly is undoubtedly possible without sacrificing your style!
my modest dress picks:
The dresses featured below are absolutely stunning! I appreciate the wide range of options; I'm not used to seeing so many stylish and super on-trend modest outfits! Check out these fall-ready dresses! Simply throw on a pair of tights, a fun jacket or blazer, and some boots to complete the look! Happy shopping!
some of my favorite modest dresses worn in the past:
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