Sunday, March 20, 2011

At this rate...

Okay, I had a leisurely morning. Then I went for nice long walk with my dogs and boyfriend. I'm finally sitting down to my list and then I read one blog and everything changes direction!

Nishi posted a wonderful interview with Vintage Fashionista, Brigitte Daguerre. I've been to the site and it is AMAZING. It flushed out some wonderful memories and a major TO DO.

I used to shop vintage at a local store here called Nellie Dunn's. I loved going there and I found some of the most amazing dresses. I wore them to church, social functions, school. I bought hats and gloves and even killer shoes. Many pieces are gone but a few remain in my mother's downstairs. It makes me want to buy a sewing mannequin so I can blog about each dress.

I've already written Brigitte about my grandmother's 1920's party dress and 1930's wedding dress. I want to have them replicated because they're in such poor condition.

The party dress is a pale pink silk dress in a bias-cut. It is simply stunning and fits me as if tailor made. Sadly it wasn't kept well and has many insect holes and a few stains.

The wedding dress has a story--a story of two amazing people.

My Grammy was 26 when she married. An old maid, she often told me. She'd dated mostly Yaley men and was a college graduate herself. The moment she met my grandfather at a swimming party, she was horrified. She went home and told her invalid mother that she'd met the man she was going to marry and she wasn't happy. See, he wasn't a Yaley.

He dropped by soon after, unexpectedly returning Grammy's towel. He caught her in her bathing suit cleaning the kitchen floor! She asked him to sit with her mother and a magical thing happened. Her mother's condition was often difficult for promising suitors but not for my Grampy. He and his future mother-in-law hit it off and were very close until she died. He even built her a custom made wheelchair.

Grammy's dress was actually three separate dresses layered to make a beautiful hazey flutter: the first merely a creamy slip; the second had wider straps and a straight shape; the top dress was organza with orange blossoms at the base of each capped sleeve and on her waist at the sash. It was not a wedding dress, though. Grammy saw it in a store window for $8--a price that fit her budget.

I love two particular pictures of my grandparents. One is on their wedding day. Much was going on while pictures were taken so Grace and Nels weren't paying attention. In the photo he stands barrel chested, clasping her to his side as he looks fondly down at her. She has her hand on his chest and is looking up with adoration, one foot lifted in the air.

The other photo was taken 55 years later. Nels is still rather barrel chested, clasping his bride to his side and looking down at her fondly. Grace has her hand on his chest and is looking up with adoration, one foot lifted in the air. Neither time were they aware that a photo was being taken.