Why Do the Amish Wear Blue?


It’s easy to assume that Amish clothing isn’t colorful, especially considering that plain dress is essential in Amish communities. However, although focused on uniformity, clothing worn by the Amish can be in various solid colors as long as they remain subdued. Sometimes, Amish people wear colors such as blue.

Amish people usually wear blue in specific communities or on special occasions. Some Amish communities allow the color blue for clothing, while others do not. Traditionally, an Amish bride will wear a blue dress, but it could also be purple, depending on the clothing rules in her community. 

Read on to learn about the clothing items important to Amish people, what colors they like to wear, and how clothing choices vary between traditional and modern Amish communities.

blue dress
What kind of capes do Amish women wear? See below

What Articles of Clothing Are Important to Amish?

Amish people like to dress as plainly as possible. This practice makes them unique, enabling them to stand out from the rest of society and the world. In addition, plain clothing helps the Amish to humble themselves and conform to their community’s way of life.

Articles of clothing important to the Amish include plain, uniform items that don’t contain flashy features like zippers. In addition, Amish people wear clothing that covers their bodies as much as possible. For example, the men wear shirts, vests, and trousers, while the women wear dresses, capes, and aprons.

Men and women usually wear the following clothing items in Amish communities. 

Men 

  • Pants. Men wear pants that are usually black and held in place with suspenders. Known as broadcloth trousers, these are traditionally made from cotton and wool, while more recently, polyester.
  • Shirts. These are in solid colors and don’t contain any prints or patterns. Men’s shirts should be long-sleeved. 
  • Vests. Amish men in the Old Order wear black vests over their shirts. Men commonly wear such vests when they attend church.
  • Shoes. The shoes Amish men wear are typically black. Some communities allow sneakers, but these also have to be black.
  • Hats. These are traditionally broad-brimmed black hats made out of wool. In the summer, Amish men can also wear straw hats. 
  • Coats. Known as “mutza” suits, these are traditional coats worn by Amish men when they attend church or formal occasions. They don’t contain lapels, collars, or pockets. [1]

Women 

  • Bonnets. Amish women wear large, black bonnets over their prayer coverings or kapps. Single women wear black bonnets, while married women wear white bonnets. 
  • Kapps. The shape of this head covering varies from one community to another. For example, in some Amish communities, it can have a heart shape, while in others, it can be round with pleats on the sides.
  • Dresses. Amish women wear plain, solid-color dresses. The dresses have to reach at least their calves. 
  • Aprons. These are worn-over dresses. Married women wear darker-colored aprons, while unmarried women will wear aprons in lighter colors. 
  • Capes. A cape is a piece of cloth that’s pinned to the apron. Unmarried women, until the age of 30, wear a white cape to church, but sometimes it can match their dress color. When women turn 40 or are married, they wear black capes. [2] 
  • Black shoes. Women typically wear black shoeswith black stockings underneath. 
Amish blue dress
Where do Amish people get their clothes? See below

What Colors of Clothing Are Important to Amish?

Amish clothing typically features solid colors. These colors include black, blue, brown, burgundy, green, and purple. [3] People choose them because of their plainness and uniformity. [4]

The clothing colors important to the Amish are subdued and traditional as Amish are conformists, and no one wants to stand out from others in their community. That said, sometimes lighter colors are allowed in specific Amish communities.

Lighter colors are usually reserved for younger children, although adults can wear summer dresses and shirts in lighter colors. In some communities, only dark colors, primarily black, are allowed, so it depends on the rules in specific Amish groups.

Some Amish people have reported wearing blue if this color was allowed in their group because of how it was the lightest, brightest color they could wear. [5] Some communities allow bright shades of blue such as turquoise. 

It’s essential to know that since many Amish women make their clothing, the colors they wear will depend on the fabric they purchase from their local stores. [6] The Amish women typically run the community’s clothing stores.

Amish Women’s Clothing Colors 

Women’s clothing color choices in Amish communities usually depend on the occasion and marital status. For example, when it comes to the aprons women wear, they’ll wear a black apron and cape for attending church if they’re married. By comparison, if they’re unmarried, they’ll wear a white apron and cape.

Traditionally, Amish brides wear blue or purple dresses on their wedding day. However, in some Amish communities, this color can vary. Women must be mindful about the wedding dresses they choose as these items will become their regular Sunday attire.

Amish Men’s Clothing Colors

Amish men wear black suits fastened with hooks and eyes instead of buttons, which they view as too flashy. Their trousers typically have no zippers. Men also wear suspenders since belts aren’t allowed to hold the trousers in place. Amish men wear white shirts, coats, vests, or black bow ties when they attend church. [7]

To do work, some Amish men wear blue trousers, such as those made of denim. These sometimes have pockets for practical reasons, such as storing tools in them. Denim is chosen as the trouser material because of its durability more than its color.

Amish blue clothes

Do Modern Amish Follow the Traditional Clothing Rules?

Modern Amish don’t always follow the traditional clothing rules. Instead, they can integrate themselves into broader society by wearing modern clothing. Less conservative Amish groups will also have less restrictive clothing rules than traditional Amish.

For example, in some groups, women can wear short-sleeved dresses instead of long-sleeved ones, while clothing with buttons or other features is allowed in other communities. 

Generally, though, Amish people conform to the belief that they should wear plain clothing that fully covers them because it represents the simplicity and modesty of their lifestyle. They differ in this regard from modern Mennonites, who allow more freedom in their clothing.

Conclusion

Amish people can wear the color blue daily or for special occasions, but this depends on their community’s specific clothing rules. 

References:
[1] Source
[2] Source
[3] Source
[4] Source
[5] Source
[6] Source
[7] Source

Daniel Isaiah Joseph

Daniel's seminary degree is in Exegetical Theology. He was a pastor for 10 years. As a professor, he has taught Bible and theology courses at two Christian universities. Please see the About page for details.

Recent Posts

error: This content is copyrighted.