When I was younger, I was enthralled and captivated thumbing through the thick, unwieldy photograph albums of my mother's youth. Some of the images were sepia toned, some yellowed, many contained another small girl who did not look unlike myself, but who lived in a completely different geographic, socioeconomic, and temporal reality, her likeness captured and memorialized in the two-dimensional world before me. Having learned only rudimentary embroidery and sewing skills at that age, chubby fingers far from adroit when maneuvering a thin and unfamiliar needle, I was amazed to discover how many of her outfits my mother had created herself, constructed with her two hands. They were, then, humorous to me, like a costume, and now, older, I look back on them as incredible relics of another time.
The tights adorning the legs of these young high school women of 1969 immediately evoked the playful patterns of stereotypical court jesters, of those Shakespearean clowns who continued to evolve to recognizable cultural paragons. Paired with simple, fitted shift dresses in cream and black, the tights are removed from accessories of ridicule and absurdity, shifted to something beautiful and bold and whimsical. Hair long and free, necklaces long and free, this inspires me to embrace the impending carefree weekend.
(image taken from Retronaut, inspired by Orchid Grey)