Is this really only a hundred and twenty-five years???? We’ve come a long way, baby!
The whole idea of puffy dresses and prairie life became a GREAT part of my intro to “Second Chance Christmas“, the second novella of “The Sewing Sisters’ Society” collection, and part of the overall Prairie Brides series…
Because claim shacks were small.
Folks didn’t always allow enough safe room around wood stoves and/or fireplaces.
Bustles made skirts wider.
In a world governed by mathematics and physics, A + B = C.
And C = skirts catching fire!
For practicality’s sake women in the west had to adjust their longing for European and Eastern fashion and slim down their skirts.
Tapered, not bustled….
Slim, not voluminous….
And then… shortened….
And then shortened some more….
Wait for it:
Skirts and pants…..
By the mid 20th Century a World War changed so much… Men went off to war.
So did women.
Women couldn’t wear skirts in all areas…. so they were issued trousers….
Women at home went to work manning the manufacturing processes…. and wore pants.
And a new shape was born from necessity, from self-reliance, from role reversal. And it’s never gone back, has it?
Here’s a great article about women and pants and how Calamity Jane set the Western tone for horse-ridin’ women:
When we look back and see how for millennia women wore dresses… That it would have been considered out-of-this-world in-your-face to dress down…
Even into the 20th century…
Suffragists didn’t just fight for our long-awaited right to vote. They set a bar for an equality that we can never take lightly… but not at the expense of our respect, right?
I love getting dressed up. I love pretty dresses. But the other side of me is so totally down with blue-jean-casual… when I’m writing a story or running a power saw or cleaning a donkey pen or painting a house or room… or making jam to sell at our roadside stand.
So tell me, what’s your fashion fave and why? Is it how it makes you feel? Or how you like to be seen by others? Or would you just love to go back, back, back and dress in those ladylike fashions once more?
No right or wrong answers here, and there’s a Kindle copy of my new full-length historical
“A Most Inconvenient Love“ for one lucky person today. Leave a comment below…