We Have More Than the Obvious Church Vestments

Feb 2nd 2021

Never fear: for those who have reached Divinity Clergy Wear in search of church vestments like men’s clergy robes and clergy robes for women, along with clergy shirts and preaching dresses for ladies, you’re in the right place.

With that in mind, we’re also proud to offer you some really unique church vestments that are decidedly hard to find. You can come to us for all of the above vestments, as well as all of the following.

●Stoles and Tippets: These interesting vestments are very similar to the point that you might hear either of them termed in the same way. They look like a long strip of cloth, linen or silk, which is sometimes ornately decorated or embroidered. Typically, a priest officiating or presiding over Eucharist services will be arrayed in church robes over which a stole or a tippet will lay. Most of the time, the clergy stole or tippet lays over the shoulders and hangs in front of the dress of the person wearing it, but this is not always the case. The reason for this may be that in times past, the stole serves as a sort of napkin to clean the chalice between participants of communion.

●Surplices: The surplice, and a similar vestment known as the alb have very like styling. Both of them are white garments, typically made of linen or cotton, with wide sleeves, a square yoked neck and a roomy fit. Either of them may be decorated with lace or other ornamentation but often they are plain. The surplice is a knee length garment and the alb reaches to the ankles. Sometimes a priest will wear a surplice over a cassock, which is why the term “cassock and surplice” is often voiced. Surplices are also worn by acolytes, altar servers and choir members.

●Rochets: The rochet is very similar to the alb, which means it also looks like a surplice, with the exception being that the sleeves of a rochet are more slender than the sleeves of an alb. It is sometimes paired with a cassock in place of a surplice, and it is not intended to be worn for Eucharist services.

●Chimeres: The chimere is one of those vestments that has its origins in the secular world. It is believed to be descended from the robes of academics, and thus, it retains the sleeveless design and cloak-like appearance of some of these. The church itself will dictate the function and appropriate use of a chimere, but it is often worn by members of the church choir. Here at Divinity Clergy Wear, we have a collection of chimeres that contains red, purple, black and even blue examples, both in decorated and plain, undecorated colors.

●Rabats: The rabat is an interesting vestment that is often paired with a collared shirt and a set of robes to give the impression of a clerical collar. It takes the form of a sleeveless garment similar to a vest. It has a collar that is open at the front so that the collar of an underlying garment can show through behind it. This enables a rabat to be worn on top of a shirt and underneath robes to give the appearance of a clerical collar.

●Cassocks: The cassock, often styled as a “cassock and cincture” because it is often paired with a belt-like accessory known by that latter name, is a garment that is not always considered a vestment. This is because the cassock is typically not worn during ceremonies. In fact, the cassock was actually once reserved to be the “everyday wear” of priests. That is, at any time when they were not participating in or presiding over a service, they would be arrayed in a cassock. Here at Divinity Clergy Wear, we provide cassocks in the traditional black, as well as in purple and red.

Call Us or Visit Us in Store!

Still not sure what you need? Perhaps you can’t find it on our website or you aren’t even sure of what the name is? These are all good reasons to get in touch with us at 877-453-3535 and we’d be more than happy to point you in the right direction. We’re also your source for more information on these interesting church vestments, many of which have long, colorful and interesting histories.

We’d also love to see you in our store, if you’re in our area. Our physical store location is conveniently located in Hamilton, New Jersey, and we’re always happy to see our valued customers.

There are some occasions where you really just need to get personally familiar with something before you buy it. It's that way with clothes, and not too different with liturgical vestments. Come on in if you want to see how things really look!