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Posts Tagged ‘fashion’

It’s later than it should be to start writing a #lentowrimo post. And my brain has been fried by yesterday’s early morning sick dog drama – the Vicarage Hound was indeed as sick as a dog. Let’s just say that it is a great pity that we hired the Rug Doctor a week ago. Although the wool moths that ate our lovely rug would have been feasting for longer, so perhaps it was for the best.

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The Vicarage Hound bids a fond farewell to the living room rug

After the dog drama, I was able to spend an afternoon visiting friends at the Proc Trust conference for ministers’ wives. I’m busy with other things that take me away from home at the moment, so I’d not signed up for the full four days, but was able to sneak into the tea lounge for a while. I failed to note this year’s fashion trends I’m afraid but it was great to catch up with some dear sisters for a few hours. I heard tales of amazing provision of housing for church planters and encouragements of people coming to faith through church members choosing to move to tough parts of town, and I had a snatched and joyous chat with a vicar’s wife whose husband will soon be the training incumbent for one of our old ministry trainees. So this summer that will be four young men ordained out of our attic, and we heard the other week that another lad who lived up-upstairs is on the pathway to ordination too.

So although I have nothing much to say, I seem to have said a little bit. And maybe you also have tales of sick dogs or encouragements from friends to share too. The stories of life that make up the pattern of daily discipleship. Drama and laughter.  Sick and sisters. Moths and ministry.

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What do wives of Christian ministers do when they get together, other than talk (obvs)? Last week at Hothorpe Hall we managed to take in some great bible teaching, pray together, swap tips for local church ministry and still had time to walk in the Spring sunshine (some of round fields, others between charity and coffee shops in Market Harborough). Er, and there was eating and a frock swap and crafty type things.

I also took time to assess the important question of what Vicar’s wives are wearing. A while ago I blogged on this and thought I would revisit it when I observed this year’s trends. So I am able to share with you that the current Vicarage/Manse look is likely to include one or more of the following:

  • Long boots with skinny jeans or leggings (very popular)
  • Converse sneakers (when boots don’t quite work)
  • Long sleeved t-shirt worn under short sleeve tunic or similar
  • Scarves are definitely in (possibly in place of necklaces, which were less in evidence than previously)
  • Fewer gilets this year (perhaps because of the milder weather, or people had remembered that the conference centre is about 20 degrees warmer than our houses).

Some of the essentials for this year's must-have Vicar's wife outfit

 The enjoyable frock swap run by Frock Chick Hilary Nicholls was a fun way for us to get rid of not-quite-right-for-me clothes – the wide-legged jeans and short boots etc. We were able to get new clothes ourselves and also think about whether such a thing would work as a women’s event back home. I’m not sure a clothes swap would work here (our women are probably too diverse in age and fashion sense), but I think an accessories one would. Seems like a fun option for an evangelistic event at church – just add refreshments and a short talk and you’re done.

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I did some gardening at the weekend. To make sure I got it absolutely right, I tried to dress like Alys Fowler. But I only took a piccy of the skirt and wellies, as I’ve a long way to go to grow my hair and make it look all Pre-Raphaelite. I need to dye it red, too.

I’m sort of hoping that if the seeds see the look, they’ll behave as they would for Alys, but I may be being wildly optimistic.

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Do they spend all day in their pinnies? Do they really wear twin sets and pearls?

I am pleased to report that I do have the definitive answer for you. Reminded by my friend, Alex, when she commented on the collective noun for clergy wives, I can exclusively reveal that clergy wives wear the following:
These girls are doing good impressions of Vicar's wives.This is a pretty standard clergy wife necklace - I have one myself

  • Gilets
  • Colourful beaded necklaces

On the ministers’ wives conference I attended, these were the predominant fashion themes. The gilets are obviously driven by the sub-Arctic temperatures in most Vicarages. The necklaces probably point to a love of  jewellery and cheerfulness and a lack of budget. I have three gilets and many cheerful necklaces, myself.

I did see a single twin set and pearls outfit, but as there were 115 of us there, I think it can be confidently put down as a random occurence.

On a related note, if you could confidently share with me the correct pronounciation of ‘gilet’, I would be very grateful. I’ve been struggling and think that ‘bodywarmer’ is just too hideous a word for everyday usage.

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