November 01, 2012

one dress, one month {Onetober}

A simple word to sum up a local project I participated in during the month of October. So, what does it mean? Simply put, one dress, one month, one cause.
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A publication that I actually have the privilege to write a column for created this event where women would wear the same dress for the entire month of October in order to raise awareness for a local crisis pregnancy center. When I heard about it I was all in! How fun to wear a dress and come up with different ways to accessorize it to keep it interesting. I am a little “accessory” challenged so I thought this would be a great way to force me out of my comfortable little box. I am also deeply passionate about this pregnancy center and the ministry it is in our community so helping to raise awareness was a great cause to get behind.
What I didn’t expect was what I would learn about myself during these last 31 days.
This month has raised an awareness in me.  I have noticed things in myself and my outlooks. I have actually learned from this dress, these last 31 days.
I’ve learned…
  • that I really liked wearing a dress each day. I always have enjoyed wearing skirts and dresses.  Honestly, I usually find casual dresses more comfortable, especially in warmer weather. Now, I am a jeans kinda girl and they are my default clothing option. But I have actually enjoyed putting on my dress each day and it has caused me to think more about my appearance for my family. I usually get up and brush my hair before pulling on jeans and a top for the day. As a SAHM I don’t usually need to leave the house so really “fixing” myself isn’t something I do everyday. As I put on my dress, I thought about making my appearance more “tidy” for my husband and children. And because I spent a few more moments on making myself presentable, I discovered something. I was in a better mood! I really was! I felt more put together and more ready for the day. I felt more feminine. The dress caused me to focus on actually dressing for my day and as a result I felt better. More pulled together. More productive.
  • that my hubby likes the way I look in a dress. He commented several times throughout the month on how nice I looked. And I thought for sure that he would be tired of seeing his wife in the same old dress for an entire month! He actually brought me roses twice in the month of October. Hmm, maybe there is a connection? Who knows but receiving roses is always a good thing! Here is my little man acting as a flower delivery boy for my hubby. So sweet!
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  • that I don’t really need a lot in my closet to have options. I was amazed that I was able to create different looks for this dress just by changing out accessories and using a few different cardigans and tops. I really am going to think differently about what I purchase for myself in the future. I will think more about what options a piece of clothing will give me and how I can use it to create different looks with items I already have. This is new territory for me. I am style challenged so this is going to be a growth exercise for sure!
  • that I like aprons! I don’t usually don an apron except for after church on Sunday while getting lunch on the table or occasionally during holidays or if I’m having a big cooking or baking day. But because I was trying to preserve my dress and not get it dirty, I found myself wearing an apron a lot. So much so that I now really enjoy wearing one. I have a pretty nice Williams Sonoma khaki apron which serves the purpose but isn’t very cute. I am looking forward to sewing a cute one for myself sometime soon and have been searching for cute and feminine apron tutorials. I love this one!
  • most importantly, that it would draw my heart into prayer. Each day as I put on the dress I purposed to pray for the pregnancy center. I prayed for the director and the workers and volunteers as well as the many women in our community who find themselves in need of this wonderful ministry. My heart is even more tender to this ministry at the end of these 31 days than it was before. I am so thankful that there is a place of hope for women who find themselves in an unplanned pregnancy. I am so thankful that this center shares the gospel and that women choose life for their babies because of the work done there.  Let us stand up for the unborn and support these places that minister to and provide hope for women. When my parents were teenagers, they found themselves unmarried and pregnant with me. I am so thankful that they found support through their families and chose life for me.

At the beginning of October, I started wearing a dress because it would help to raise awareness for a great ministry. At the end of the month I am happy that goal was accomplished and I am looking back on these 31 days with a different perspective and a few insights into myself. Though I won’t reach for that particular dress to wear for a while, I am thankful for the experience it gave me.

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  1. Heather, this is so neat! Thanks for sharing your experience and reflections.

  2. I've never heard of this, Heather. What an awesome cause. I enjoyed reading what you learned. AND...where did you get those cute navy shoes? I've been looking for navy flats for-ev-er and can't find them.

    1. Thanks Pamela! I really enjoyed the experience. And, the shoes are sadly black. I am also always on the hunt for a cute pair of navy shoes. They are really hard to find!!

  3. You look terrific and what a great cause. Thanks for sharing what you learned. :-)

    In His Grip,

  4. I got chills when I read the part about being drawn into prayer. Who would've thought that a simple thing like putting on a dress would do that?
    I've gotten into wearing dresses more frequently lately, and I'm with you...a cute apron is in order!

    1. It really is amazing to me still how the simple act of wearing the same dress for a month impacted me. I am so touched that it touched you! I will let you know if a new apron ends up on hook in my kitchen!

  5. We are neighbors over at the Better Mom today. So glad I came by and checked out your post! I too am accessory challenged, but this was very inspiring. :)

    1. Fun! Thanks so much for popping over! Isn't it hard being accessory challenged? I have a closet full of solids and that is sometimes kinda boring! Here is to breaking out of the box!

  6. Wow, what a neat idea! Very inspiring :)

  7. What a fun project, and a great cause. I love what you did with it.

  8. Inspired by you and your dress. What a wonderful idea. Thank you for sharing it.

  9. What fun! I totally need to find something like that super versatile too! And the reason even better


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