Did you see Emma's post about grooming?
Ouch! Why did I schedule Emma's week on personal presentation first! Of course, her articles are so sweet and gently put. And, it's fun to talk about these subjects.
However, this is one area where I really need to step up. Emma's posts are a good reminder for me.
When I was younger, I always kept myself in trim and neatly turned out. Now, amidst business and fatigue, I can let this slide so easily. I dress fairly neatly. But, when it comes to taking care of hair, nails, weight, etc., I need to get back on track. I can justifty this negligence with a lot of excuses, some of which even sound noble. But, the bottom line is that I know my husband and children appreciate it when I put a little more effort into how I present myself.
I also know that these statements from Beautiful Girlhood are true: "The proper care of her person and dress will make an otherwise homely girl good-looking. What is more distasteful than a slovenly, untidy woman?...Though she might have a kind heart and many other desirable qualities, yet her unkempt appearance hides them from view. But, a person who always keeps herself tasefully and tidily dressed and her person clean and neat is attracive and pleasing."
In the description of the Proverbs 31 woman, most verses are devoted to her inner character. But, there is one verse that gives us a clue to her outward apperance. It says she is dressed in fine linen and purple.
Now, here is a woman who obviously did not spend hours and hours primping in front of the mirror. With all that she had going on in her life, she did not have time to be vain or silly about her looks. However, it's apparent that did devote some part of her busy days to her appearance. She dressed with dignity.
Is this surprising? Given all of the remarks about her capable, industrious nature, can you imagine that she went around looking sloppy? Do you envision her as slumping or slouching?
Somehow, I can't picture her that way. I imagine her as having a classic and understated look, good posture, a smile on her face, and neat hair. I would suspect that since she was so in tune with detail in every other are of her life, that she carried some of this over into the way she presented herself, as well. I would also think that she managed this with great efficiency, so that it didn't take her hours and hours to groom herself. (If we follow Emma's suggestion to develop beauty routines, it won't take us hours and hours, either.)
I suspect that the noble woman's husband, who was an elder in the land, trusted that her appearance would represent him well. I also guess that her children, who called her blessed, were proud of how she carried herself. And, I have a hunch that she was a walking advertisement for her handiwork. I would think that someone could tell by looking at her that she was capable of turning out fine sashes and linen garments to sell.
As is said in Beautiful Girlhood: "Seek goodness and purity first, then strive to keep the body in harmony with the beauty of the heart." The focus of the worthy woman was not on her outward apperance, but her outward apperance was in keeping with her noble character.
In striving to be like her, I've decided to keep a little notebook in which I write a record of my progress. I'm going to start by taking some of the steps toward a feminine character, health, posture, and grooming that Emma has suggested. I plan to track this for six months to a year. I am looking forward to making some beneficial new habits.