Back when I was in junior and senior high school these things were always important to me. I had to have everything match from tip to toe. When we went to church or anything dressy, we sported it all - dresses, scarves, hats, gloves, shoes, and purses.
I was very fortunate growing up. My mama was a teacher and really enjoyed clothing, skin care, makeup, and accessories. Monetarily we weren't really wealthy or anything. But both of my parents worked, so mama and I could also aford to get our hair cut, curled, and in her case colored. She taught me so much about fashion, color combinations, etc. I loved to watch her with her skin care and make up. Often she would spray me with a spritz of perfume! Then there was her nail polishes. She usually used some shade of red. She would also follow the moon at the bottom of her nails. I noticed nails polished the same way in movies meant to take place in the 40's - 60's. But I guess a lot of this explains a lot of my obsessions with these things! The best part of all of this is we would go shopping to some of the better stores four times a year and she would let me get one outfit each time. The rest of the time she would show me to have all these beautiful things at very reasonable prices. Lots of it was searching sales and finding discounts. Today I still enjoy buying at the outlet stories.
Some of these ideas are dated, I know, but it was how my generation learned. The only time we wore capris, slacks, shorts, etc. was for sports activities and outdoor events. In school we were expected to wear dresses or skirts that hit below the knees. If the principal or a teacher thought our outfit was too short, we were made to kneel. If our skirts didn't touch the floor, a girl was often sent home from school. We also had to wear stockings with our shoes and sandals when we had on a dress or skirt. I remember my mama being so happy when panyhose first became popular and when teachers were permitted to wear pant suits to work!!
When I was 20, my brother and sister-in-law were living in Illinois as my brother was going to school for his PhD. At that time United flew from our little local airport and they had a discount card for those 18-21. I was able to fly to see them because it was about 1/2 the normal cost. I can remember the pink with navy trim suit I wore. I also had navy low heels and carried a navy purse and wore white gloves. I didn't wear my hat then as I didn't want it messed up on the plane. It was the first time I flew and I only knew what others told me. The plane wasn't very full and at a layover to pick up passengers, the stewardesses (that's what they were called in those days) came to my seat and were talking to me. One asked me if I was going to "Stew School" for United. The others were excited and before I could answer, they started telling me the ins and outs of school! I was kind of in shock. I mean, I couldn't have because of wearing glasses and being married. Those were two rules that couldn't be broken then. But they were all so beautiful with great personalities. I didn't even think I was pretty and I was so, so shy. Finally I took off my gloves and they saw my wedding rings. Then they changed the subject and we talked about my husband being in Viet Nam and my brother at the University of Illinois. They told me because I was dressed to a tee, the right age and going to Chicago, they thought I was going to school!!
Even today there are some fashion rules my mama taught me that are difficult for me to give up on. The white after labor day rather went by the way, as she wore white a lot in her later years in Florida. As soon as I lived here, I did, too.
I have had a difficult time with going barelegged with shoes and sandals. I never did like bare feet inside a shoe. I still try to match my purses with my shoes and outfits, but I would rather have a few well made ones than a lot of inexpensive ones just in order to match. And to be honest, I hate changing everything around a lot. Each season seems to work for me.
My hats I still love though I usually only wear the good ones to church. I have several western style ones and lots of ball cap styles. Most of those are from Bob. I also have some visors, but rarely wear them as I have to keep out of the sun and they don't give much protection. Some straw hats that kind of flop are a part of my collection, too.
Because of all of this, I guess it was no surprise when I went to cosmetology school when the PD had the layoffs. I enjoyed doing manicures beside hair. All the wonderful colors are impressive. So many are alike, but I always changed mine up each season. Our teacher was fond of saying " You can't sell it if you don't wear it." That is so, so true. I love OPI polish. It holds up really well for the price. And I love their colors and the names!! some of my favorites are Hawaiian Orchid, Barefoot in Barcelona, and Cajun Shrimp. So much fun!!
A lot of family and friends will give me scarves and/or pins. I love them both. Mama also taught me if you have one or two good pieces the others can all be costume. And being I never like to be like everyone else, I still mix a lot of her costume jewelery even though it can be 45-60 years old. I love it! Sometimes I'll get strange looks, but hey! I like how I look and the appreciation for the fashion lessons my mama taught me.
I know I have shown this picture a lot, but I think it shows my mama's love for matching, hats, skin care, and makeup. She was paralyzed on her left side and in the nursing home but her aides all new how she liked to dress and how to do her face care and makeup. She was 84 in this picture on Mother's Day. She passed away in July that year. One of aides wanted to come in to dress her even if she was off duty. They called her in, and the woman did her hair, her face and dressed her in a beautiful dark jewel green outfit. I think she would have been very happy.
Love and peace to all my friends.