When asked to describe my mother’s best dress in a journal prompt I was hard pressed to remember the last time I had even seen my mother wearing a dress. How could I describe her ‘best’ dress when I could not even picture her wearing one? The best I could come up with was at my wedding thirty five years ago. Thinking all the way back through my childhood I could only picture her in pedal pushers, the Jackie-O stretch pants and later on, blue jeans. I recalled that we had worn dresses to church on Sundays but I think she might have given those up long ago.
I headed on over to her house yesterday on a dress quest. I first asked dad if he could remember the last time he saw mom in a dress and he couldn’t. Then I asked mom and she said, “Hmmmmmm….” so we looked through her photo albums to see if we could find a photo of her wearing a dress because she insisted she once wore them a lot. Not only did we hit the jackpot in that regard but mom enjoyed describing the dresses we found to me- both the colors and fabric – in great detail just as if it were yesterday. Because the photographs were in black and white, I found myself surprised when she told me what color the dress was. Being an excellent seamstress, my grandmother had made all her dresses for her.
Here is a cute shot of mom taken from behind as she is getting in the car. She said this dress was a light BLUE. We both liked the way the sleeves were not set into a bodice but was all one piece with the bodice.
Mom is sporting a PURPLE sundress in this photo. She said, “I really liked how I felt when I wore this dress, I felt pretty.”
I was most surprised by the description of this ensemble mom wore posed on the steps. She said the pleated skirt was a sparkly silver graphite that reflected light. I imagined it to be like some of the Kaffe Fasset fabric I’m using in a quilt, awesome fabric because depending on how the light hits the color is different. Mom said she thought the sweater was probably fuchsia.
But Mom’s best dress, the one that was her favorite of all time was the one in the above photo. The under skirt was a pink pencil skirt. The overlaying skirt was a gauzy brown sheer fabric and the bodice and bowtie were also brown, probably satin. By the way, that is yours truly that she is holding and I forgot to ask her what color I am in.
I enjoyed the time spent with mom reminiscing and splashing these black and white photos with color. Had I not gone on a mission to find a photo of mom in a dress these photographs would have been forever etched in my mind as just black, white and gray. Mom says she thinks she stopped wearing dresses because my dad told her she looked better in pants but I’m not so sure about that. I think she stopped wearing them because she loves the comfort that pants provide. She is just a casual kind of gal, my blue jean mama.