Embracing Layering

I have a good friend who rocks the “seminary girl” look – layering shells and a tight pencil skirt under otherwise not tzniut dresses, tops, and tunics.  This is something which I have never embraced – until now.

I went shopping with this friend, and she got me to try on the skirt she does this with (which happens to be super inexpensive from Forever 21) and a few tops of the right style. I actually loved it! I didn’t feel nearly as awkward as I always expected that I would. In fact, I felt completely comfortable – and not only because the skirt is super comfy as was the dress I had on over it.  I felt like it was natural to layer in this way.  Why is layering a dress over a skirt somehow different than layering a tunic over pants? I always thought it was, but maybe its not.

Since the shopping trip, I have bought a few more dresses/tunics to wear in this way and I am slowly trying it out.  The skirt I have creeps up a little as I walk, and since I am a giant (not really, but at 5’9″ I sometimes feel like one in the Jewish world) it sometimes borders on the length I feel comfortable with.  So I have to be careful about where I am going and how much walking I am doing, when selecting this look.

What really caught me recently, was that I showed up for Shabbat dinner and due to some unforseen circumstances the Rebbetzin was not yet dressed for Shabbat.  Yet, what she had on was this look! A beautifully colored tunic dress over a black shell and pencil skirt! I don’t know if it would have caught my eye so much had I not been thinking about it already, but it did and it made me feel even more comfortable with embracing this look.  To see a very pulled together, yet busy working mom and Rebbetzin wearing it comfortably reminded me that its not just for seminary girls anymore!

What are you playing with in your closet lately?  Any fun tricks for modest-ifying trends?

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3 thoughts on “Embracing Layering

  1. Great post. Some of my friends add extra material to their skirts to make them longer. Or they buy tall or regular even if they aren’t. I’m petite but I’ll by regular if I want a knee-length skirt to be a little longer. I buy tons of fun tank tops and throw them over a Kiki Riki “cotton” shell (see Junees.com)–they make 3/4 long-sleeve length, a short sleeve-less one for long-sleeve V-neck dresses, a long-sleeved short one that leaves your tummy bare if you’re pregnant or want a cooler shell for hot summers. I also own the Gap Favorite tees in every color! Linda Leal (see Funky Frum) makes fancy shells that you’d wear to fancy events.

    • Thanks for all you insights! I still struggle with the fun tops over shells look. I love it on other people, but very rarely do it myself – I am the queen of shells and cardigans/wrapigans though. Ironically, the shell I have on under my strapless gown in the header is a “fancy” shell from Funky Frum (before it merged).
      Oh, and sadly, I’m a giant (5’9″ and all legs) so I need tall skirts to start with. i did recently receive a sewing machine as a gift, and am very excited to be able to add extra fabric!

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