I read an article today over at the Aquila Report by a woman on why she wears skirts all the time. Caroline Allen, author of the Modest Mom blog and owner of the Modest Mom line of clothing, gives three main reasons for why she prefers skirts over pants: because they are feminine and easily portray the fact that she is a woman, because they are easy to be modest in, and because they are comfortable.

While I appreciate her concern for modesty, and I commend her dedication, I have to disagree with her basic premise. Skirts are not inherently more modest than pants. Modesty is much more an issue of the heart than simply what a woman wears. A skirt can easily be provocative, and it’s not hard to be modest in pants, or shorts, or even a swimsuit. And, there is a real danger for many women to become self-righteous over their choice of clothing. I’m not saying this is the case with Mrs. Allen. From all I can see, she appears to be a lovely woman.

In order to keep this post lighthearted, I thought I’d use pictures to illustrate my point.

First, are skirts always more feminine than pants? [As to whether wearing pants confuses people about my gender, I’m fairly certain no one has ever mistaken me for a man. And I find it slightly disturbing that Mrs. Allen reports her children saying she looks like their father when she has worn pants.] Which outfit below is more feminine to you?

This one?
Or this one?

Second, are skirts always more comfortable? I admit, I enjoy comfortable skirts myself. I find them very pleasant to wear, but not always convenient to my daily life as SAHM mom to small children. Which outfit looks more comfortable?

Or this?

And lastly, are skirts inherently more modest than pants?

Is this modest?
Or is this?

I’m all for women wearing skirts if they want to, and I am certainly for dressing modestly. I just think we should use wisdom and not seek hard and fast rules to enforce.

Just for the fun of it. Which outfit below would have been considered more modest by Victorian era ladies? Bonus points if you know why.

Outfit 1:

Outfit 2: