CounterCouture: Modest Style #3

The boobs or legs rule

Originally this post was going to be about what you wear when you have a night out. I then realised that I very rarely get the opportunity now to go out for the night and as such have very few outfit shots, that are not from my badly-dressed university days. So I have changed it to being more general in how to dress modestly throughout the day and night.

So far in this series, we have looked at tights vs leggings and skinny jeans. We haven’t yet taken the top half into consideration. At the moment, the trend for the top half is relatively modest. The most popular style of top is a crew or boat neck with a relatively loose fit top- though crop tops are a whole other issue. This has succeeded in hiding away boobs from the scene. Legs and shoulders/collar bones are apparently the new erogenous zones and our chests are concealed.

However, for the more endowed girl- not sure if that includes me or not- these tops are not necessarily flattering. In fact, they can turn your beautiful breasts into a shelf. Where do you draw the line between being proud to be female and suffering from monoboob? How do legs fit into the picture? Where is the ‘too much’ boundary?

For myself, it’s always started with a choice between legs and boobs, which does kind of rule out strapless body con dresses. If I want to wear a slightly shorter skirt, I should wear a top with a higher neck. If I want to wear a deeper v-neck, I should wear trousers or a longer skirt. (Failing that there is always a bandeau.) I don’t always stick by my rules but as guidelines for modesty dressing, I think they work well.

None of the photos in the title picture are particular immodest but that’s due to choices I made and the angle of the photograph. For example, bottom left where I’m in the white top was actually a deep v-neck with a short A-line mini (here). Not particularly modesty or showing respect for the ‘bobs-or-legs’ rule. In contrast, the photos above and middle below are modest. Though the black dress I wore for my final history ball gave me fantastic cleavage, the knee-length full circle skirt and petticoat kept it modesty and ladylike. My black and white dress is short (even shorter since it shrunk) with a problematic neckline but worn with leggings made it ideal for a lazy but modest New Year’s Eve. Even the other two photos, where I am wearing a bandeau to cover my bra (below) and wearing a low cut top with trousers (above), show how the ‘legs-or-boobs’ rule can operate within day to day life.

corset, modesty, style, jeans
Flashback from my university day,
courtesy of Rebecca Rae.

My love of modest dressing wasn’t always as pronounced as it is now. This photo clearly attests to that. (I still wear corsets but I have a much more obvious under-vest/shirt to prevent this boob-pushup affect.) Yet even here I wore a well-fitted pair of skinny jeans to balance out the corset. I guess what I am trying to say is that don’t think modest dressing is just for daywear. It can work for the evening too.

Let me know your thoughts on the ‘boobs-or-legs’ rule. Which do you prefer to get out on a night out? Comment below or via Facebook, Twitter and Instagram with the hashtag #CCModestStyle.


The post Modest Style #3 first appeared on CounterCultural. CounterCouture.

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