Saturday, April 21, 2012

s is for summer dresses


(this is a re-post-- i had written something for s today but decided i wanted to put this up instead)


hadn't planned to blog and or write today--but as i have told you, it hits me and haunts me sometimes until all i can do is get it over with--not knowing mostly where the thoughts or ideas will lead exactly but today it is a feeling---one i am not confident i will be able to convey, but i shall try--


a quick trip to the mall today with robyn, had us exiting through one of the women's clothes departments---and there is where i stopped to touch it to let it take me back to my mother's summer dresses---

it seems some of the styles she wore when i was a child are returning or maybe it was just the delicate mix of the floral colors, that brought her image rushing back to me in a flood of emotions--


i could see her on a Sunday afternoon, sitting on the front porch of my grandmother's house, my dad's mom--"queenie"---


as a child we would go there for dinners---straight from church--so mama would never change her clothes----in the summer or even early spring, it would be hotter to her than a sauna---she would have her stockings on and girdle----she was quite miserable and the fans in the piano bench were always taken out and used profusely by her and my dear aunt alice---



lily my great aunt, would always be in a sweater, as she had a stroke years before, she was often cold even in the hottest of days-


my mom always thought she was enormous and we all tried to tell her, that she could take her hose off and she didn't need to cover up her arms---but she never did and always did-


today i could smell her chantilly and hear her funny laugh---but most of all i could remember her dresses and the searches for them-


the many shopping trips with her, the trips downtown, the way the car felt when we returned to it on a hot summer day----the way we fought over my clothes, the way she told me then, what i tell my daughter---and now how i see how much joy she must have felt, when we found that perfect dress--the one that she and i both loved and the rarity of that occasion-


but most of all i see her-i see her as she was, so full of life---her legs making that scratching noise as she crossed them and made that look at me--the look that she thought no one else saw--the look that meant, i am dying out here on this porch, i can't wait to come home and take these clothes off and get in my "house-coat"----which she wore to extreme---

yes the summer dresses only worn on Sundays, are what brought me back today and made me sad and regretful and nostalgic---

when i see her next how i hope it will be in the summer on a Sunday

80 comments:

  1. I just went to Kohls the other day and noticed that the summer dresses looked a lot like what they wore in the 50s. I thought that was kind of interesting. I wonder if that style will catch on again.

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  2. oh i am sure it will--i think it already has come back in style a couple of decades ago--my daughter loves it, but then again, she loves almost all fashion--hope you enjoy your weekend, sherry :)

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  3. My daughter was born an old soul, I swear. She can now buy whatever she wants and yet searches thrift stores to buy vintage dresses. They are very cute.

    T

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    1. same with mine---and she loves the vintage store--thanks :)

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    2. Just had to add that years ago, I did just that too, shopped for vintage dresses and jackets, pure silk and jersey from the 1930s and 40s. That was before synthetics. Many were custom made.

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  4. Beautiful memories! I can just picture her fanning herself with those fans she took from the piano bench... Very evocative post. I loved it!

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    1. i still have some of those old fans--mostly from funeral homes, my grandmother had gathered--thanks so much dana :)

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  5. I never wear dresses these day, but can remember the excitement of getting a new dress when i was a child.

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  6. i don't wear them either--they simply do not flatter my body type--but oh i love them--have a good weekend paula :)

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  7. The only time I wear dresses, or even skirts, is for formal occasion - and then, only if it would be unacceptable to wear even the smartest trousers!

    Yet, I have to admit, when I'm all 'dolled up' in a nice dress it does feel rather nice - but I couldn't do it every day! ;-p


    SueH I refuse to go quietly!
    Twitter - @Librarymaid

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  8. my mother wore them all the time when i was younger but as in her later years she switched to pants--thanks for reading sue

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  9. lovely and so sensory. Interesting how our childhood memories are that, so sensory. I felt like I was in the moment.

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    1. oh so nice to hear when someone feel this way--thanks so much sandra :)

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  10. Enjoyed reading this; I remember my mom and her girdle; squeezing into it for Sunday church, taking it with relief literally the minute she stepped back inside the house. I bet being in it all day like your mom did for Sunday lunches was very miserable indeed on those hot summer days! Great memories; I haven't worn a dress in a bit so not sure what the styles are these days; I'll have to go out and take a peek :)

    enjoy the day!

    betty

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    1. there are some beautiful clothes period out right now, i think--wish i looked good in dresses--oh well---thanks for sharing your memories and hope you have a wonderful day too :)

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  11. Nice posting and loved reading the memories of your Momma. I remember most the Sunday hat's. Very few wear them now.

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    1. i know--a lady at our church was suggesting we have an old fashioned day and dress to the nines with our hats and all---thanks :)

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  12. Little girls do love dressing up and the prettier the better. Wonder when I lost that desire? It's jeans and slops for me now :-( This is a lovely post.

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    1. i know---but my daughter loves to dress up--me not too often thanks susan :)

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  13. Fantastic memories Lynn. I have memories like that of my grandmother. Mom didn't wear dresses much. Have a good weekend Lynn!

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  14. wonderful having the sweet memories isn't it--thanks and you have a great weekend too :)

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  15. This is such a touching post, Lynn. That's exactly how I feel when I think of my paternal grandmother and her aprons.

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    1. my grandmother, queenie wore aprons too--as does one of my sisters--this past birthday i gave her a really cute apron---thanks so much paticia :)

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  16. A touching post. Isn't it funny how we associate certain smells and the feeling of fabric with a memory? My mother's scarves (I used to play with her scarves and hats - and I still like hats and scarves) always made an impression on me. I thought she looked like a movie star. I can still remember the smell of her chiffon scarves, so comforting.

    What some of us women suffer for fashion - but it's like cars for men, I guess. A little pretty. . .

    By the way, Lynn, that was a sketch (a drawing, not a painting of the building windows if that's what you meant by your comment on my blog). I sketch first, for use later. One day I might post some of my art, but for now, it's not scanned, so only in my sketchbook/travel book for now.

    Thanks for stopping by, I look forward to your comments.

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    1. oh--okay--i would love one day to see your art--i love art--and am always thrilled to see others, paintings, and objects---yes it is so funny the smell thing--so powerful--thanks for your wonderful comments and i too look forward to yours :)

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  17. Wonderful memories made from such simple things. That's what's always a bit of a surprise to me. I remember my gram's pies still steamy from the oven and way she tied her housedress at her middle. There are no GRAND moments I can recall, but those simple things stir such wonderful thoughts of her.

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    1. i can see her now and smell--apple pie?--thanks for sharing:)

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  18. Lynn, what a sweet memory...have a blessed weekend!

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  19. what a lovely memory. It's amazing how much sensory detail we remember :)

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    1. it really is--it all brings it back sometimes, when we least expect it---thanks jemi :)

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  20. What a sweet nostalgic memory! I could see it!

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  21. That's unny -- I visited somewhere that put me in a nostalgic mood too.

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  22. Such a sweet memory. Thanks for sharing.

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  23. I came back after I remembered that I wanted to say that a quilt fabric store near us has a marvelous collection of vintage inspired fabrics. Those old dress prints that I recall, along with the old quilts made by my grandmother--those fabrics are now being replicated.

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  24. oh how wonderful---my daughter keeps saying she wants to make a quilt--thanks for coming back with such interesting news :)

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  25. Such a beautifully written, nostalgic post. It took me back too- reminded me of my grandmother. I haven't heard the word 'housecoat' in quite a while. :)

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    1. yes she had many a housecoat---thanks i am glad you read it and enjoyed it :)

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  26. Lovely post. I used to make lots of my own clothes, and I always liked floral fabrics-still do!

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    1. me too--and my mom sewed also--thanks catherine :)

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  27. Oh, loved this post! Reminded me of my mom in law. I remember going to church with my with her(She was 84. And she was smartly dressed plus high heels. After church she hurried us home and when she was inside her flat, she almost ripped the clothes off. When she had her flowered house coat on, her expression was pure bliss.
    Have a great weekend, Lynn. :)

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    1. oh she sounds wonderful--similar memories, huh---thanks cecilia--hope you have a nice one too :)

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  28. This is really lovely and really sweet. We remember some of the most specific details about people. In a way, that keeps them close, having that little special reminder, like summer dresses.

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    1. we do keep people alive this was don't we--thanks so very much shelley :)

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  29. This is a very sweet, tender memory. It makes me go back to the memories of my childhood. Thanks for this nostalgic trip. =)

    From Diary of a Writer in Progress

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    1. i glad it did--thanks so much for taking the time to read it and comment :)

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  30. We all seem to have memories of our loved ones that bring them back to life, at least in our hearts. This was beautiful.

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    1. we do keep them close to our hearts--thank you so much:)

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  31. We do have memories of our loved ones, I think the title of this piece is perfect, Summer dresses.

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    1. thanks so much--i am glad you liked the title :)

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  32. I remember taking the yearly trip with my grandmother to find the perfect easter dress. You know, the one you wore with the white leather sandals.

    This post reminds me of this memory. A special time that we never knew at the moment was going to make a fond memory.

    Thanks

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    1. i am happy it reminded you of such a lovely memory--thanks :)

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  33. It's wonderful that you have these dear memories.

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    1. i am so glad for them--thanks cynthia :)

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  34. This is such a lovely story about your mom! I'm so sorry that you lost her, and I'm sure she would be very proud of you. Julie

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    1. i know she was because she loved unconditionally--thanks so much :)

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  35. Great details in this post. I can tell that you loved your mother very much. Thanks for sharing.

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  36. What a lovely trip down memory lane, amazing how these recollections bloom at the strangest times.

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    1. isn't it, you just never know--thanks rch :)

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  37. This was lovely and so poignant. Our memories are so entwined with our senses and sometimes that catches us off guard...a smell, a sound, the feel of fabric...they often catapult us back in time. I loved this post.

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    1. that's exactly what happened--thanks for your sweet insights, joyce :)

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  38. Lynn, a wonderful post...I remember all the dresses from my grandmother and mother and yes, the stockings and the girdles and slips! How fun to remember! we just don't wear dresses like we use to!

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    1. yeah those slips are pretty hard to find these days--thanks tracy :)

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  39. We always got the prettiest dresses at Easter and then wore them to church all summer long. Such a nice nostalgic post, Lynn.
    By the way, you have won a magnet in my A to Z Blogging Giveaway. Send me an email with your address to writepam71@gmail.com and I will mail it out to you.
    Blessings!

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    1. we did too--loved the Easter hunt for the perfect dress and shoes---thanks--okay i will and blessings to you too :)

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  40. It amazes me how much my daughters love dresses. As a child, I could not stand to wear them, but I don't even bother buying my girls pants anymore. I wonder how long this will last?

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    1. that's great--i love dresses on little ones so much:)

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  41. Oh I love summer dresses. I don't wear them very often though.


    Sonia Lal @ Story Treasury

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  42. I love this post. Summer dresses are the best, especially on my daughter :)

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