From the mailbag: Department store helps find modest clothing

Earlier this year my mom and I read in the Church News about young women in Kansas who went to their local Nordstrom department store and made a stand for modest clothing. (See April 28, 2001, Church News.) I was impressed by this story and grateful for the work they had done, but little did I know that I would soon have the same opportunity to stand for truth and righteousness.

This past June my mother and I were shopping at Nordstrom for a dress and were not having any luck. Everything I thought was cute was either too short, too low cut, or too revealing in another way. We were very discouraged in the lack of modest, yet cute clothing. After a while, my mom was approached by a Nordstrom department manager, who asked if she was finding everything. My mom replied that we were having trouble finding what we came for: a modest dress.

She was really interested in what my mom and I had to say about our desire for modest clothes and gave us her card along with the number for the head Nordstrom buyer so that we could share our feelings with her, too. Eventually we arranged for a meeting to discuss our ideas.

In preparation for the meeting, our ward's young women spent one night brainstorming ideas of the types of modest clothing we would like to see, and I compiled these ideas into a brochure. I invited other young women and my ward and stake Young Women presidents to the meeting. We were expecting only a buyer and a department manager; instead we were greeted by the buyer, two assistants and the Nordstrom store general manager.

Everyone was very receptive to our ideas and agreed that more modest clothing was needed. They took detailed notes and promised to show them to their designers. They said more modest clothing would appear in the store before Christmas. We felt that our ideas were taken seriously and we were confident that they would carry out their promises. We thanked them for their time and interest, and they actually thanked us for coming in. They said that they had heard from other customers hoping for the same things and were glad that we had taken the time to share our thoughts.

When we left, my mom gave the department manager and the buyer copies of President Gordon B. Hinckley's book, Standing for Something, to help them see where we were coming from. Plans are now in the works for committees to get together to pick out more modest clothing and we will be keeping in touch with the buyer to continue this progress. Another meeting is scheduled for November and I am busy inviting many friends from Church and the community to attend.

The inspiration from my sisters in Kansas is really making an impact. I am not only more aware of how I want to dress, but I can see more areas for improvement around me. I am glad I had the opportunity to stand for truth and righteousness and that soon more modest clothing will be available for teenagers where I live.

Lyndsey Payzant, 17, is a Laurel in the Rancho Cucamonga California Stake.

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