Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Story Dresses

I have still been thinking about Jude's post with photos of a little red dress, a family heirloom.  I commented there that our family had a "red dress" too.  My sister and I both wore it as little girls.  I was recently at her house, where it resides, so I snapped a few pictures of it to share here.  When I looked at the tag, the familiarity of the brand name came back in a rush and I could hear my mom's voice telling me that this was a brand she bought frequently as it was good quality, but inexpensive.  Important factors for a single mother of two. 
Isn't it cute?!
My sister wore it first, then it was my turn.  I used to joke that I was the "Hand-Me-Down Queen"  as most of my clothes belonged to my sister or a family friend before I wore them.  But, they were well taken care of and this dress lasted not only for this second girl, but for our 4 daughters who followed.  I am not sure if it can be attributed to my mother's generation or some other factor I am not aware of, but my mom took great care of everything!  Clothing, furniture, family name it...they lasted her lifetime and she kept it all!  I am so glad she did, so we could share in the tradition of the little red dress!

Here we all are!  We couldn't find the white petticoat the day I snapped the pictures.

There was another dress, by the same maker, that she saved that was equally special to me.  
Maybe even a pinch more so, because the story was this dress was bought for me!
At least that is the story as I remember it!
I believe all the girls wore this one too.  This is it...

So cute!
You can tell it's been stored for a while!  Did mom's actually iron their daughter's dresses back then?!!!  I don't remember that task!  Ha!
I guess now these little treasures will wait patiently for granddaughters to carry on the tradition!
Here are a few more detail shots...
The back
The trim at the neck

The brand: "Youngland"
I love the positive-negative effect

All of this reminded me of an excellent play my sister and I went to see last year.  It was based on this book and it was excellent!  The book is simple, charming and thoughtful.  The play added another dimension, another layer.  It broadened the experience with laughter and tear invoked memories.  It brought the audience together, especially the women, through shared experiences with those we didn't even know.  I thought about it for many, many days afterward.  If it ever comes around to where you are, or if you happen upon the book...I highly recommend both!

Photos by NAE @pomegranatetrail ©2011


jude said...

do you know, i actually like to iron!

Nancy said...

Not me! Hurts my back. I am feeling around for a memory... my mom had this kind of Coke bottle was glass... with a rubber stopper in the end, with poked holes in the rubber thing...Mmmm - something like that...and that is what she used to sprinkle the clothes with water as she ironed. I had forgotten all about that. I also remember her pouring distilled water in the iron.

cindy said...

i remember begging mom to let me iron, getting to iron dad's handkercheifs & the pillow cases. I still like ironing flat small things, not shirts, dresses, things with weird shapes, pleats, etc. early in the marriage, thought i'd do Him a favor, ironed a shirt, he asked me not to do it again, please.

love your red dress & the memories.

Nancy said...

Yes I don't mind flat simple things...but that's it! lol

cindy said...

i've put maps of the Imagination: The Writer as Cartographer book on hold at the library, will look forward to looking at it.

Nancy said...

Oh good...tell me what you think. The hard thing about the library is having a time frame in which to finish all you've checked out!

Anonymous said...

hi Nancy, have had a couple of goes doing this, hope it works this time!

Nancy said...

Margaret- Yea! Here you are! Welcome!

Kim said...

I love the dress, and those photos. Such great memories, and I hope I have a daughter to pass it on to as well!

Nancy said...

Yes Kim that would be fun, now wouldn't it!!
Thanks for stopping by!

deanna7trees said...

those dresses are so sweet and still in such good condition. my dresses were always starched and iron when i was little. funny but i just read that book you refer to a couple of weeks ago. a quilting friend gave it to me because she knew i would enjoy it and i did. wish i could see the play.
i do love to iron straight pieces. love seeing the creases disappear like magic. my iron and board are always open.

Nancy said...

Yes my mom kept everything in great new, really.
I was not sure how they would make a play from that slim little book, but it was very much expanded and enriched. So wonderful.
My iron/board are always up too! Mostly because I don't like to drag it out when needed, plus it makes for more surface to lay things on! Right now it has an old child's chalkboard set up for painting some file folders! HA!