Monday, September 19, 2011

What Not to Wear

by Gina Welborn

Since there's pretty little worth watching on tv during the summer (oh, really all year round) my oldest daughter, Jerah, recently discovered "What Not to Wear" with Clinton Kelly and Stacy London. I have to say that in the last couple weeks since she watched that episode (or two), I've noticed a slight change in her attire. She's a little more . . . polished. Still appropriate for a 13-yr-old yet no longer she put on the first thing she grabbed.

We even decided to have our own "What Not to Wear" closet cleaning out.

Timely to be sure.

To do this, you have to pull everything out of yoru closet and dresser drawers. No pain. No gain.
  • Get rid of anything you haven't worn in the past two years . . . but keep all your classics (if they're in great condition).
  • Get rid of anythign that's overly colorful, unflattering (yes, girls, this means trying everything on), or certainly both.
  • If you find yourself justifying an item's presence to an invisible friend, ditch it.
  • Keep the realities of life in mind: If you only wear jeans, you don't need five pairs of black pants.
  • Ease the breakup by storing anythign you're unsure about. Revisit the bag or container of castoffs in a mothn and you'll probably be surprised you ever wavered.
I share all of this today because . . .

Those of you in the Christian writing world know later this week is the American Christian Fiction Writers' national conference in St. Louis. Yay!!! Eeeks!!! While the men attending may give five minutes of thought into what to pack, most of the ladies have been pondering that very question for the last few weeks. Even months.

Now I really don't like most fashion magazines, but one I do like is Lucky. The pages aren't littered with scantily or skanky dressed models. Absolutely no articles on improving one's sex life. No dating advice either. Just fashion. And fashion that's wearable for a normal woman, not a desperate housewife either.

One article I came across claimed "These 10 Pieces Make 7 Weeks of Outfits." No way! Umm, yes way. Only thing is I can't imagine wearing only those seven items for  seven weeks in a row. Might as well just give me an orange jumpsuit and call it a day because before those 7 weeks are up, those 10 pieces are going to seem like an orange jumpsuit.

Perhaps the real message from the article is that we really don't need as much clothes as we think we do. Hmmmmmm . . .

Every woman is supposed to have a LBD (little black dress) in her wardrobe arsenol. Just as every Christian is supposed to have the armor of God. Oh, you know the verses . . .

Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil. For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places. Therefore, put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle you will still be standing firm. Stand your ground, putting on the belt of truth and the body armor of God’s righteousness. For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared. In addition to all of these, hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil. Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. ~Ephesians 6:10-18

Listen, girlfriend, armor is important and all because we are in a battle. We are at war! Or as The Message says, "This is no afternoon athletic contest that we'll walk away from and forget about in a couple of hours. This is for keeps, a life-or-death fight to the finish against the Devil and all his angels."

War is tough so we'd better be equipped. Well equipped.

But how much more important is that we are clothed in love?

Jesus said, "So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other."

The early Church didn't have classes on Simple Evangelism. The apostles didn't do weekend conferences on How to Win Souls.

People weren't drawn to Jesus becuase of the armor He wore. They were drawn to His love. Which seems to me why Jesus was so focused on telling his disciples to love one another.

Love is the new (and the orignial) LBD. Wear it! Every day. Every way. Every how. Because people will know who we are and whose we are by our love one for another.

SERIOUS QUESTION OF THE DAY :: Do you think it's possible to love someone even if you don't like him/her? If so, how do you really love someone who you don't like? Do they see more of your love or your dislike?

NON-SERIOUS QUESTION OF THE DAY :: If you had to whittle your wardrobe down to 20 pieces (not including undergarments, accessories, socks, shoes, or winter coats), what would those 20 items be? Here are your categories: Blazers, shirts, sweaters, skirts, pants/jeans, dresses. If you don't wear, say, pants, you can elimate that category.


  1. What Not to Wear is eerily addictive. But I really like your thoughts on love, Gina. It's a classic for sure. Never goes out of style, and always flattering.

  2. I'm guilty of having spent weeks (maybe months) thinking about what to wear at ACFW. Partly because I only want to bring carry on luggage, partly because I have a limited number of dressy casual outfits and have already used them for two conferences this year (with many over-lapping attendees), and partly because I never know what size I'll be at any given moment :(

    But, I do have the perfectly little black and gray cocktail dress for the banquet, which has enough stretch to fit at a variety of sizes :)

  3. I'd *like* to condense what I need into a carry-on only. Sadly, I like shoes. And Spanx. LOL.

    I'm currently wearing the cocktail dress I'm gonna wear for the banquet. Amazing how changing the belt gives it a more trendy look. Go figure!

  4. Makes me wonder if when we get to heaven we'll have to watch hidden camera footage of what we wore spiritually everyday. Ew.

    LOL. Love is like Spanx. Keeps everything all nice and smooth and where it should be!

    As for whittling the wardrobe: Black pencil skirt, long black leather skirt, black turtleneck sweater, black pants, jeans (2 pair), white blouse, white t-shirt, black t-shirt, denim skirt, black v-neck, white long-sleeved t, black long-sleeved t, black vest, denim jacket, black cardigan, black leather jacket, little black dress, black suit with pants and skirt. All done. Accessorize with color and forget it.
    But it would be so boring!

  5. I read a Siri Mitchell once where all her character wore was three colors. Black, white, and green I think.

    I've thought of pairing down to black, gray, cream, and purple since that's about 70% of my wardrobe.

  6. I read a book years ago written for frazzled moms. The author suggested going with black, white and red. I suppose you could pick any three or four colors and make it work... as long as they don't clash!

  7. Since I work from home, I don't have/need much of a wardrobe. Jeans and tops almost always.

    I'd rather spend my money on something sewing related or books (mostly fiction).

    I'm going to try to not go missing for another week.


  8. I went on a big spree the other day. Remember our post about shopping?
    Well, i took a huge contractor sized garbage bag of castoffs and a bag of shoes to the House of Concern.

    Bought - three pair of decent jeans THAT FIT and got three nice purses.


    Oh and as far as loving someone you don't like. That's called family.
    oh, not my family of course.

  9. Deb, you got three purses?! I love purses. I'd have to have at least two on my list of twenty items!

    Gina, I've never seen this show, but it sounds fun. So does the idea of paring down the wardrobe. I like the "store it" idea, if you're not ready to part with it yet. Since I'm trying to downsize (literally and figuratively LOL!) I'm going to set aside a day or three to work on this.

    Love - it's hard, when you don't care for someone's personality or behavior, to love them. When I'm in that situation, I pray my way through it and really try to remind myself that Jesus loves them. I need to look at them through his eyes and not my own in those instances. Sometimes its hard b/c I want to cling to my feelings at the moment. But I try. :)

  10. It's topics like this that make me want to go Amish. I have no fashion sense. Worse than that, I really don't care that I have no fashion sense. I wear what I like, and if bright colors happen to make me happy, so be it.

    As far as loving people who don't like you, it's the theme of my life. And as Deb intimated, it starts with family. Don't mind me--last week was a rough week with family, and this week promises to be no better.

  11. LOL, Niki! I think you just described my ideal wardrobe. I was telling my younger sister today about the clothes I settled on for conference. Black, white, gray. Sadly, most of my clothes overall are those colors. She said, "Add color through accessories."

    So I grabbed two very colorful scarves. Doubt I'll wear them.

  12. Oh, Niki, I did a devotional a few years ago about frazzled moms. Seems like it was a MOPS publication. Don't remember her talking about simplifying a wardrobe to three colors.

    Although I easily could.

  13. Oh, DeAnna, I know what you mean about having a work-at-home wardrobe. My usual attire is yoga pants and a tank top . . . until it cools off and then I add a zippered hoodie.

    But as I was choosing clothes to pack, I heard Angie Breidenbach in my head.

    "Gina, put away the flip flops. No, Wonder Woman shirt either. Step away from the jeans."

    I listened to all but the last. Why? Because denim is not black, white, or gray. *sigh*

    I have all the flash of a 1920s comic strip.

  14. Oh, ladies, loving family is so utterly difficult at times.

    Especially when little girls like to take ALL their shirts out of the drawer so they can choose one to wear and then leave the unwanted ones on the floor.

    Barb, I understand what you mean about the simplicity of Amish dressing. Amen! But then I put on a tank top with sequins or beading or a wild purple print or lime green wedges or black knee boots . . .


    I (occasionally) enjoy dressing up.

    Tomorrow I'm going up to DC with hubby and a friend for the sole purpose of eating at Uncle Julio's. Yummy Tex-Mex deserves me looking all snazzy.

  15. You know, with all respect to the lovely Angie and to the WNTW people, they're kind of like the wardrobe legalists of the world.

    I happen to love your superwoman t-shirt, and I have every intention of wearing jeweled flip-flops of the more sandalish variety on Saturday. I'm also wearing trouser jeans with a dressy t-shirt on Thursday since I don't think there will be any appointments that day.

    And as I mentioned, I don't even own a pair of pantyhose.

  16. I admit it, Gina: I adore clothing. I would have a hard time paring my wardrobe down to twenty pieces, but I would definitely keep my blazers, ballet flats, sweaters, dress pants, and blouses--the standard teacher attire, I guess.

    And yes, I can and have loved people I don't "like"--misbehaving students. ;) I'm not talking about typical misbehavior, the everyday squirrely wiggling or talking during class, but emotionally impaired children who are blatantly disrespectful and even personally insulting. I can only love them because God loved me first. I take no credit for my own "capability", that's for sure.

    Great post!


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