The Plain Suit

Come here to raise questions or discuss issues pertaining to the culture of Christendom or Mennodom especially as it relates to traditional or practical appliations of the faith.

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The Plain Suit

Postby theotherside » Tue Jan 27, 2009 12:50 am

follower wrote:
RMWP wrote:Ok, so I'm actually a little confused here.... The purpose of wearing a straight cut suit is.... uh.... simplicity?

I would prefer, if you wish to discuss the merits and problems of the straight cut suit, you would create your own thread on a suitable forum such as Menno Culture...

Alright here it is. (if this has been discussed before, we can merge this with that thread)

I can't recall reading about the plain suit anywhere in Scripture. maybe someone could direct me to the passage(s)?

What is the value of the plain/straight cut suit? Why not use one off the rack, or better yet, not wear one at all?

Since so much emphasis seems to be placed on this article of clothing in some circles, even to the point of banning people from communion and church membership, there should be some really, really good reasoning behind this.

If it costs more to alter a suit once purchased, or even to have a suit custom sewn, doesn't simple stewardship come into play here?
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Re: The Plain Suit

Postby puttincomputers » Tue Jan 27, 2009 1:22 am

its also odd that the "plain" suit is actually military dress!
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Re: The Plain Suit

Postby Knight-light » Tue Jan 27, 2009 1:41 am

theotherside wrote:
follower wrote:
RMWP wrote:Ok, so I'm actually a little confused here.... The purpose of wearing a straight cut suit is.... uh.... simplicity?

I would prefer, if you wish to discuss the merits and problems of the straight cut suit, you would create your own thread on a suitable forum such as Menno Culture...

Alright here it is. (if this has been discussed before, we can merge this with that thread)

I can't recall reading about the plain suit anywhere in Scripture. maybe someone could direct me to the passage(s)?

What is the value of the plain/straight cut suit? Why not use one off the rack, or better yet, not wear one at all?

Since so much emphasis seems to be placed on this article of clothing in some circles, even to the point of banning people from communion and church membership, there should be some really, really good reasoning behind this.

If it costs more to alter a suit once purchased, or even to have a suit custom sewn, doesn't simple stewardship come into play here?


Part of menno tradition, tied [no pun intended] to the attack on the necktie, or so I was told. Necktie is like jewelry, so forbidden, plain suit is designed to be worn without a tie and yet be dressed up.

Primary reason to support it? So men get a taste of what women have to swallow wholesale 24-7 in conservative menno churches. And for a few hours a week, they look amish too... like they actually belong to the same church as the women.
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Re: The Plain Suit

Postby NMP » Tue Jan 27, 2009 8:06 am

The Plain Suit is also not an Anabaptist idea, It was adopted by Mennonites rather recently from other denominations.
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Re: The Plain Suit

Postby jcm » Tue Jan 27, 2009 8:29 am

The "plain" suit seems to have been imported into the mennos around the beggining of the twentieth century. It was imported on the backs, no pun intended, of the same people who brought revivalism, sunday school and premillenialism. It seems to have in part supplanted the bow tie, though both coexsisted for a time.
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Re: The Plain Suit

Postby appleman2006 » Tue Jan 27, 2009 9:35 am

Knight-light wrote:
Part of menno tradition, tied [no pun intended] to the attack on the necktie, or so I was told. Necktie is like jewelry, so forbidden, plain suit is designed to be worn without a tie and yet be dressed up.

Primary reason to support it? So men get a taste of what women have to swallow wholesale 24-7 in conservative menno churches. And for a few hours a week, they look amish too... like they actually belong to the same church as the women.


Thank you Knight. I have never belonged to a church where you had to wear a plain suit be be a member and yet I have worn one since I was about 16 years old. Why? Knight just gave the only 2 reasons that I can possibly see for wearing it.

I personally do not feel dressed wearing a lay back suit without a tie although presently if you wear the correct type of shirt or sweater you may be. Since our church asks it's men not to wear a tie primarily for the last reason Knight mentioned and since I occasionally must attend very formal occasions, black tie events where you would be kicked out if you were not wearing formal attire I wear a straight cut suit.

I wear it to church in the winter because it helps to keep me warm. Other then to very formal occasions I do not wear it as I consider anything but simple attire. And I should add that occasionally I will wear it south of the border at times that I would not ordinarily wear it because of the emphasis that some of my brothers put on it and my desire to keep them from stumbling. :wink:
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Re: The Plain Suit

Postby jayenelee » Tue Jan 27, 2009 10:07 am

My dad does not own one; I can't remember the issue of wearing suitcoats being mentioned in our church. I have to check the rule book... maybe that's why we still have "plain cut" suits. The church got me my first one when I was preparing to go to CBS. It got awful big for me shortly after that (work on a construction crew coupled with a lot of fasting and prayer that year.) I eventually joined FMF and prepared to go to Calvary Bible School again; FMF regulations did not permit pockets on the outside or buttons, and my old one was in violation of both. I got sized up for the one I now use and had it ordered. About that time a church in Illinois loosened up and my old coat fit one of its members better than me so we traded. The sleeves on his coat were a little short, but I had two coats that met FMF regs.

That polyester one was so hot that I developed the habit of taking it off after SS. Eventually, it must have fit some one else better than me 'cause it disappeared off the racks, and I never found it again.

I didn't wear my coat for a couple years because I never got used to it - it always made me feel funny. I was also going through the reactions that all the rest of us go through about suit coats and plain... and whatever. I started wearing it some when I was going to Seneca last year, because I felt out of place without it, and started to really like it. It has always embarrassed me how casual we Mennonites are about dressing up... when visiters attend our services, they almost always where suit and tie... we are not nearly as dressed up... so now that I can copy the World, Menno style, it does not bother me a bit to wear my suit coat wearever appropriate.... :roll: :lol: :roll: :lol:
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Re: The Plain Suit

Postby farmerboy » Tue Jan 27, 2009 10:15 am

Sorry. Somehow I can't get the 'tie=jewelry' connection.
It seems to me that plain suits, especially tailor made ones, fall under the 'costly attire' definition.
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Re: The Plain Suit

Postby puttincomputers » Tue Jan 27, 2009 11:11 am

farmerboy wrote:Sorry. Somehow I can't get the 'tie=jewelry' connection.
It seems to me that plain suits, especially tailor made ones, fall under the 'costly attire' definition.


AMEN :idea: :idea: :idea: :idea: :idea: :shock: :shock: :shock: :shock: :shock:
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Re: The Plain Suit

Postby PastorRich » Tue Jan 27, 2009 11:46 am

Sorry. Somehow I can't get the 'tie=jewelry' connection


The reason you can't get the tie/jewelry connection is because there isn't any to get. It is the figment of ones imagination. Kinda like certain vehicles being outlawed in conservative circles since they look similar to a ladies breast. Same reason they want the elbows covered on a woman. They say it also similar to breast and the elbow tips looking like you know what on a woman's breast. Get my drift? Too many laws coming from fanciful imaginations and deceived minds. For a man to look at a taillight or elbow on a woman and see something sexual, already says how far outta bounds he is spiritually.
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Re: The Plain Suit

Postby puttincomputers » Tue Jan 27, 2009 11:58 am

PastorRich wrote:
Sorry. Somehow I can't get the 'tie=jewelry' connection


The reason you can't get the tie/jewelry connection is because there isn't any to get. It is the figment of ones imagination. Kinda like certain vehicles being outlawed in conservative circles since they look similar to a ladies breast. Same reason they want the elbows covered on a woman. They say it also similar to breast and the elbow tips looking like you know what on a woman's breast. Get my drift? Too many laws coming from fanciful imaginations and deceived minds. For a man to look at a taillight or elbow on a woman and see something sexual, already says how far outta bounds he is spiritually.


need we mention dual wheeled trucks looking like hips?
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Re: The Plain Suit

Postby PastorRich » Tue Jan 27, 2009 12:09 pm

need we mention dual wheeled trucks looking like hips?


Wow! I forgot about that one! Who in the world came up with this garbage? I mean, in your wildest dreams who could dream up such stuff and then preach and teach this garbage from the pulpits? Little wonder the perversion rates in these groups are in too many cases, worse that the world. I mean the stuff I am hearing and seeing is simply unbelievable.
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Re: The Plain Suit

Postby Knight-light » Tue Jan 27, 2009 12:12 pm

puttincomputers wrote:
farmerboy wrote:Sorry. Somehow I can't get the 'tie=jewelry' connection.
It seems to me that plain suits, especially tailor made ones, fall under the 'costly attire' definition.


AMEN :idea: :idea: :idea: :idea: :idea: :shock: :shock: :shock: :shock: :shock:


Cape dresses and net veilings with strings are costly too, but I never heard anyone accept that reason for not having them. :roll: I suppose when folks were wearing all hand-made clothes, a plain suit was no more expensive than a regular suit, and easier to make without the lapels.

And actually, I remember seeing an article on ties in the local paper, written by a fashion expert who said, What jewelery is to a woman, a tie is to a man. I always find it interesting when I see mennos, where the women are plainer than the men. Youth boys with fancy belt buckles that would never be tolerated as bracelets by the women... :wink:
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Re: The Plain Suit

Postby Heirbyadoption » Tue Jan 27, 2009 12:28 pm

Just as a note, there are many who make their own plain suits, rather than going to the expense of having them tailormade.
Also, a thought on Pastor Rich's comment about no connection between ties and jewelry, does either serve any purpose beyond serving as a clothing accessory. What does today's tie do besides decorate?
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Re: The Plain Suit

Postby hillperson » Tue Jan 27, 2009 12:35 pm

How are we women supposed to carry the load of nonconformity when our men are not willing to wear a plain suit for two hours a week!?!
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