Old Time Easter Clothes: A Modern Metaphor

By Carol McClain: @    carol_mcclain

Are you old enough to remember the preparations you made for Easter morning services? I think these traditions should come back.

Old Time Preparations. We always got new:


  1. Hats:  How I loved picking out the new hat for the year. Being Catholic, we always wore hats in church, so our new bonnet got exhibited throughout the spring and summer.
  2. Gloves: Back in the 5os women and girls wore gloves. Our white ones always soiled quickly. Of course, we washed them, but grime always stained. The new, white gloves for Easter gave us a clean slate.
  3. Shoes: Nothing other than patent leather would do. The gleam of the varnish sparkled in the light.
  4. Dresses (or suits for the boys): We couldn’t dream of meeting God on Easter morning in our ragged clothes. Whether my mother made us matching dresses or finagled enough finances to buy us something new, Easter always meant being clothed gloriously.

As I think on these things–all quite common and traditional throughout the fifties and into the sixties, I can’t help but think of how it symbolized the glories of Easter.

The Modern Metaphor

  1. Hats: Adorned with ribbons and flowers and netting, hats showed the newness of spring. Winter might linger, but it was a new season. When we turn to Christ, hardships will linger, but we have the victory as long as we don the helmet of salvation
  2. Gloves: The old and soiled were thrown away. We now donned pure white. Isaiah 1:18 says, “Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.””
  3. Shoes: Shiny and new, we, as believers, shod our feet with the gospel. It sparkles not only on our feet, but in every part of our being.
  4. Dresses: The new garments symbolize us being clothes in righteousness. We cannot go to the wedding feast in our earthly garments (see Matt. 22: 1-14).

Easter today adds lots of fun things: Peeps, Ukranian Easter eggs, pictures of our children on the Easter bunny’s lap. But remembering old traditions can add a new twist. Through all the campy Easter fun, we can’t forget it’s true purpose. Christ rose from the dead. That resurrection clothed us in glory.



  1. My mom tells me about how decked out they used to be…Gloves, hats, dresses, patent shoes. To this day, she cannot stand wearing a hat. I rather like them, however. Thank you for sharing this post!

  2. Becky Miller says:

    Thanks for the Easter metaphor, We miss you in Malone.

  3. Becky Miller says:

    Thanks for the Easter story,

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