The Modest Kosher Fit

Clothing can be made in a variety of fit - close-fitting, fitting, semi-fitted, loose-fitting, and very loose fitting. These wearing ease are determined by the clothing industry. The following three major clothing pattern designers, Vogue, McCall and Butterick, share identical wearing ease specifications.

Misses' Ease Allowances
Bust Area Hip Area
Silhouette Dresses, Blouses, Shirts, Tops, Vests Jackets Coats Skirts, Pants, Shorts, Culottes
Lined or Unlined
Close Fitting 0 - 2 78" not applicable 0 - 1 7/8"
Fitted 3 - 4" 3 3/4 - 4 1/4" 5 1/4 - 6 3/4" 2 - 3"
Semi-Fitted 4 1/8 - 5" 4 3/8 - 5 3/4" 6 7/8 - 8" 3 1/8 - 4"
Loose Fitting 5 1/8 - 8" 5 7/8 - 10" 8 1/8 - 12" 4 1/8 - 6"
Very Loose Fitting over 8" over 10" over 12" over 6"

The above chart is for a "misses" size. To test your own clothes that you wear, pull all the ease to one side and pinch and measure. The ease is twice the measurement you took. adheres to the Jewish modesty standards set forth in "Modesty, An Adornment for Life" and "The Tznius Handbook."  To be kosher, tops have to be semi-fitted and tops that are loose fitting are considered mehadrin (refined). Most of our tops and dresses have a bust ease of 5" to 6", which are kosher mehadrin.

To be kosher, skirts have to have at least 4" of ease at the widest part of the hips.  Anything beyond that is mehadrin.  

Women who fit the "women and plus" size ranges will require a larger wearing ease.

The following are snippets of modesty requirements from other faiths, regarding tight clothing.

Tight Fit Is Also Immodest Many people think immodest dress relates only to an insufficiently covered body. But a tight fit is also immodest, even when the body is fully covered. This applies to men as well as women. Many do not realize that tight clothing draws attention to the anatomy, which distracts from the purpose of education, business, leadership, or worship. Adequate ease in the fit of our clothes allows the viewer’s attention to go to the other person’s face for more effective communication.

So here are some guidelines to help determine if clothing is modest or not:

Is it tight fitting? If so, err on the side of caution and consider it immodest!

Tight Clothing: Modesty not only means covering skin, but also covering curves. Men are just as interested in tight clothing that shows off every line of your body as they are in clothes that reveal those curvaceous body parts. Your clothes are too tight if you can’t pinch them, move around comfortably in them, or put them on easily.

The phrase “clothed yet naked” was interpreted as meaning that they wear short clothes which do not cover that which should be covered of the ‘awrah. It was also interpreted as meaning that they wear light clothes that do not prevent others from seeing the woman’s skin underneath. And it was interpreted as meaning that they wear tight clothes, so that they are covered and cannot be seen, but their bodily charms can be seen.

On this basis, it is not permitted for a woman to wear these tight clothes, except in front of the one before whom she is permitted to show her ‘awrah, who is the husband – for there is no ‘awrah between husband and wife, because Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

Besides our modest blouses, dresses, skirts, slips and maternity wear, is also offering modest tees and shells as modest and refined alternatives to the plague of tight-fitting Lycra-Spandex-Elastane "shells" that you see everywhere.  


Francesca said…
Thank you for linking to my article! Great advice here.
modestanytime said…
Thank you for visiting, Francesca and allowing me to share your link.

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