What would you say to encourage moms who are trying to please everyone by the way they dress?
I would say, “been there, done that, girlfriend!” and then I would lean close and ask if they’ve looked in the mirror of God’s Word lately, to see what He says about our worth. Our worth comes entirely from being His unique, redeemed creation–not from pleasing others with our appearance or behavior. There is so much joy in dressing as God’s princess, and not a slave to other’s opinions.
In your book you say “If Mommy, with extra weight or tired lines, can still dress tastefully and smile at her day and her children, they will see that beauty is not confined to the cover of a shiny magazine, but that they live with a beautiful woman every day.”
What would you say to women who struggle with dressing beautifully because they’re afraid of being frivolous or drawing attention to themselves?
I think it’s important to look at our motivation in adornment. Are you drawn to bright colors because of how it may catch someone’s eye, or simply because red or pink or orange are happy colors to you? Do you accessorize because you’re desperate for approval, or simply because you delight in the beauty God has provided for our senses in jewelry and textiles? The act of dressing is not a sin in itself, but our motivation needs to come from a heart secure in our standing before Christ.
(love this quote : Because beauty is an attribute of God and something He is passionate about, anything we do to recognize and embrace beauty can actually become an act of worship. Pausing to take in a sunset, admiring the delicate beauty of a flower, and agreeing with Him as to the beauty of the body He gave us, honors His design and skill as creator, and this is worship. )
Those acts of creating beauty are a form of worship.
How would you encourage those moms who feel they are hopeless as far as fashion goes to start building a wardrobe and personal style?
I would start with a Pinterest Board. That’s where I had my breakthrough. I thought I was incapable of creating an outfit that was ‘me’ and fashionable, too. Scanning pretty pictures and pinning ones that I was especially drawn to helped me realize I really DID have a sense of style. After realizing that truth, the next steps were fairly simple, and I walk you through creating a wardrobe that echos your pinboard in the book!
What are some of the main benefits you have experienced in embracing beauty and dressing well?
Simply more joy. This was an area of my personhood–the person God created me to be–that I was neglecting. When I learned to look to Him for definitions of beauty in the different seasons of my life, and began to actually practice the art of dressing myself (instead of giving it up as a lost cause) I gradually gained experience and began to gather moments of victory, and soon I found this area of my life was bringing me delight instead of shame. It was that joy I wanted to help other moms find when I wrote the book.
How do you find a fashion mentor?
I was born and there she was! LOL My mother has been the biggest influence on my personal fashion–not that I dress just like her (I don’t), but she always embraced personal style no matter the trend, no matter what stage of motherhood she was in. I think one of the reasons that she’s been such a positive influence is that she was mature. She was 30 when she had me, so was well into her 40’s when I began to take notes. I think if one is looking for a fashion mentor, look for a woman who is confident and mature. Insecurity is one of the biggest enemies of personal style, so look to women who are beyond following peers and fads.
What is your one favourite go-to accessory? outfit? hairstyle?
My favorite go-to accessory are rings. I love that they are a piece of beauty that I can see on my person (unlike earrings).
My favorite outfit right now (7 months pregnant!) is my black maxi skirt with any drapey, purplely top. I just found a black, purple, and pink blouse at the thrift store for $2 and I can hardly wait to wear it!!! The skirt makes at least my bottom half look slim ;) and the colors of my tops make me smile every time I wear them.
My go-to hair style right now is headband curls. I share how I curl my hair without heat or product on my blog. Curls make me feel so glamorous and I love that these set while I sleep and take no time at all on a busy Sunday morning!
In your chapter on thrift-store shopping, you talk about making sure you bring home items that will already work with what you have in your wardrobe. What is one of the most outrageous items you’ve ever purchased that you weren’t sure about and has actually worked out for you? (or if you haven’t got one, what is one of the worst things you’ve ever brought home from the thrift store :D)
Oh, shucks, I can’t think of anything beyond the orange sweater I mention in the book. I’m really a very conservative shopper, and if if I’ve brought something home that didn’t end up working for me it was because the item was too boring! My challenge in the book to use the thrift store for branching out was a challenge to me, as much as anyone else!
I can so relate to how you talked about only dressing well during pregnancy. Guilty, in the past! This last pregnancy with my 4th I found myself very inspired to dress well, and put an effort into my outfits. No more baggy, awkwardly fitting (albeit maternity) sweaters – hello fitted shirts and non-maternity tops! If you could change one thing about the way you dressed while pregnant, and do differently this time around, what would it be?
This round I am flat refusing to wear something just because it fits or is cheap. I’ve put a bit more effort and just a bit more money (not a lot, because I thrift shop almost exclusively!) into finding tops I actually love, and outfits that make me smile no matter how much weight I’ve gained. The wisest investment I’ve made was the aforementioned, black maxi skirt which has loved me all the way through the pregnancy. It was $3 at the thrift store and goes with every. single. top. I own. ;)
You can win a copy of Trina’s book, Embracing Beauty. And as bonus, I’m throwing in a copy of one of my favourite books of all time, Desperate: Hope for the Mom Who Needs To Breathe. Both of these books have been a blessing and are ones I think all moms of any age or stage of life should have on their shelves!