Friday, November 19, 2010

A Color Befitting Mother Culture

A Color Befitting Mother Culture

 Wool plaid is my favorite skirt for cool weather. The (tartan) skirt is a traditional look that, I’ve convinced myself, will always be in style. I keep an eye out for off-season sales. Over the years, a handful of colors have made their way into my closet this way. I’m partial to red wool; wearing it and knitting it. 

    An autumn color I find unusually soft and appealing is plum.  

    May I introduce you to a less talked about detail of the godly woman that is tucked away in Proverbs thirty-one? Here we read that her clothing is of fine linen and she actually wears the color purple. For centuries this hard-to-come-by and expensive fabric dye has been associated with royalty. I think it befitting that purple (or plum) be worn by the godly homemaker. Purple is the representation of the majesty of motherhood. To my mind it beautifully represents a mother’s high calling. 

The Majesty of Motherhood 

    A mother is queen of her household. The day her newborn baby is placed in her arms is her coronation day. Yes, while she is gazing into the face of her precious little one, a little one so fresh from heaven, she is crowned queen. She is crowned with authority by the Almighty God. 

    The Young Victoria

    Upon reading the Landmark book, Queen Victoria,I couldn’t help noticing what biographer Noel Streatfeild, intriguingly said of young Victoria on page 64:

“From the roots of her being she believed that Divine Providence had called her to the throne and that, young and inexperienced though she was [she was eighteen] there could be no question about her fitness for her task. It was God’s wish that she should reign. He would support her.”

Do we have such confidence in our calling . . . from the roots of our being?

A Servant-Queen

    A homemaker is nanny, nurse, cook, teacher, taxi-driver, housemaid, laundress, seamstress, gardener, friend, and more. She is queen. She serves and she reigns. And as a good queen thinks of her country and her people before she thinks of herself, love and duty have taught the homemaker to anticipate the daily needs of those she serves (husband and children) even before they are aware of them. 

Humble Obedience

    Children, too, have a part to play in this mini kingdom of home. A queen expects her subjects to, in turn, faithfully serve her. Because Miss Charlotte Mason was a British educator it seems apropos that she would be better familiar with the characteristics of royalty. She said, “It is good for the children to faithfully serve, honor and humbly obey their natural rulers [Dad is king]. Only at home can children be trained in the chivalrous temper of proud submission and dignified obedience.” 

    It would be odd indeed, to come across a phrase such as Charlotte Mason’s chivalrous temper and in a modern day American child training book. And yet isn’t she on the mark? The government of the home is not to be democratic – where everyone has an equal say. It is a monarchy. It isn’t heartless tyranny but an authority gently “felt” and accepted by the children within the atmosphere and order of a happy home.

    During Thanksgiving Holiday when you serve and eat a harvest of healthy colors, think also of wearing a color befitting your Mother Culture.    

Comments are welcome.

This post is based on a longer article: “The Majesty of Motherhood” found on Homeschool Highlights. 


  1. I loved this post!
    Thank you for it.

  2. This is a beautiful post. I have recently read your article on Homeschool Highlights as well, and I have had to ponder the fact that I have abdicated some areas of rightful authority. I have been a servant but not always a queen.

    I am ashamed to say I do not have one article of purple clothing in my closet. (I am partial to red and I have plenty of that!) I was mentioning to my children that I wished I had more purple/violet to wear during Advent, and now I seem to have another good reason to add it to my wardrobe.

    God bless you, and have a Happy Thanksgiving holiday.

  3. Karen,
    I agree completely. Purple has long been my choice of color, I do wear it often. This posting is so very encouraging in our role, Mother, Queen of The Home.May God grant us the wisdom and the contentment for and in this high calling. I am so thankful that God made me a woman. Thankful too, to be a keeper at home, and a husband who delights in me.Thank you once again for this beautiful posting. Daughters of The King we women are,Praise The Lord...

  4. Thanks for this beautiful and inspirational post. I tend toward dark green and navy and I love long skirts. Where do you find yours? I know to look for Pendleton, Woolrich, Eddie Bauer and LLBean brands, but since I get nearly everthing at resale shops or secondhand on ebay, are there other brands to look for?

  5. Karen, this is such a good article.

    I do love the ideal of being queen in my home. I also love the rich deep tones of red and shades of purple, like plum. They are delightful and so beautiful!

    Thanks for this post!

  6. Thank you for all your encouraging posts. I especially enjoyed seeing your sampler needlework pictures and reading about them.

    Your blog has truly been a place of inspiration and encouragment for me.

    God Bless you.

  7. Hi Karen,
    thank you for this information. Purple is my favorite color since, well I think since forever! There is not a day that I don't wear purple and people around me seems to know that. When I worked as a physician assistant in the dept. for pediatric stem cell transplantation, children used to call me the purple doctor. My own 2 daughters have inherited my love for purple, although less extreme.
    Although home-schooling isn't very common in the Netherlands (I am not even sure it is allowed), I like (thanks to you)to read about it, and I think it must be so inspiring for both parents and their children. I have a different background, but did my best to teach my girls that there is 'more' in life, and am very proud that they both seemed to have 'got the message'. Thanks again, warm regards from a rainy Holland, Anne-Marie

  8. Anne-Marie,
    It is good to have the "purple doctor" join us. She sounds like a ministering soul to children.

    I have behind the scenes knowledge of a host of ladies (in different stages in their life) who enjoy reading "Moments with Mother Culture" even though they do not or have not homeschooled. You are all welcome.

    Anne-Marie, you passed along those things that were closest to your heart to your girls and it must be gratifying that they "got it."

    Your Holland bulbs are receiving all the rain they need that makes them so beautiful. I've been carrying buckets of water to my patches of new bulbs. I want to fool my Holland bulbs into thinking they are still there - so they will be just as beautiful.

  9. Hi Ladies,
    To me the royal color of a servant queen is also a symbolic reminder of a phrase Miss Mason used - she encouraged a combination of "high thinking and lowly living."

    Kristyn, thank you for being candid.

    I like the Pendleton outlet store here in Lancaster as good source of American wool. It is interesting to know you also are keeping your eye open.

    I am looking forward to sharing stories of the samplers that are hanging on my walls with you.

    I may not always reply (when I am in the midst of longer writing hours or longer kitchen hours) but I welcome your personal pondering.

  10. Karen,

    I love long skirts--and wool looks so nice with boots. Isn't it interesting how the color and choice of dress can affect our attitude from day to day?

    I "need" a bit more purple, perhaps. The plum shade looks so soft and cozy.

  11. What a heartening post about embracing the calling to be a mother. In today's culture where motherhood is viewed as a brief interruption or (leave) from ones career women need more than ever to feel validated in choosing motherhood. It must not been seen as a step down from something else she could have been or done but as you so aptly put a high, even royal calling, ordained by God. I know at times I feel that other areas in which I am gifted are laying idle. I remind myself that these areas will be revived when William is old enough to begin more formal education. I will be able to hopefully inspire him to talent in these same areas.

  12. I loved reading your post.
    My daughter and I enjoy wearing purple too.

    Actually, it would be around about 2 years ago now, that we saw a documentary about how they used to make the purple dye for royal clothes. A difficult job!!
    I found some information here:

    Ah ha! I just found the documentary on YouTube if you're interested:

    Catherine ☺

  13. I knew I liked purple for a reason! :)

  14. This passage in the preface to Mrs. Sharp's really speaks to the need to celebrate the calling of motherhood: "...yesteryear, when the nurturing of a family and the pursuit of the domestic arts--cooking, decorating, handicrafts, and creating family recreational pursuits--were not considered second-rate burdens but a woman's most rewarding achievements."

    It's been helpful to have and seek out supportive family and friends that agree with and enjoy these traditional roles.

    Thanks for suggesting the book in the previous post.

  15. Thank you so much for your kind words on my blog. I feel truley blessed that you personally took the time to make yourself known. It makes reading what you have wrote all the more meaningful and inspirational. Thank you for sharing all that you have learned on the journey of motherhood and I look forward to getting to know you, even though it is through online communication :)
    -Kristin, momma of my little warriors

  16. I'm so glad I found your blog! You look lovely in red wool or purple. I hope that all is going well with you. I've been re-reading A CM Companion. It seems I always need inspiration to be the mother my children need and your book is one of my favorite encouragements.

  17. Hello dear Karen,
    I love deep red and I love deep purple. I can hardly decide which is my favorite.