Thursday, September 2, 2010
We'll Meet Again Some Sunny Day - DAY 19
I dug up this photo of Mum (front) with her two sisters and brother taken during a family reunion in the mid-60s, a few years before I was born.
Mum's wearing a ready-made silk suit made in New Zealand at the end of WWII, purchased for Mum by her mother, before her wedding in 1945.
Off-the-rack clothing was a complete no-no back then; rationing was incredibly tight and so was Nana;)!
It was unheard of for struggling families to have such luxuries as this and Nana would have thought long and hard before spending precious pounds on such an extravagance.
I can't remember how much it was, but recall Mum telling me it was exorbitant for the time.
What I find amazing is that this feather-light silk has survived nearly 70 years without acquiring any moth holes, rips, stains or any damage whatsoever - and that's with my parents having seven children!
What is even more incredible to me is that the suit fits Mum perfectly in this photo, shortly after she had given birth to baby number six, my older sister.
The suit would have been pretty dated in the 60s, but I still think she looks extremely chic and glamourous!
The jacket is unlined and the so is the collar, which is softly pleated around the neckline and allows the collar to float in the breeze:).
It fastens with yellow pearlescent buttons and has a very stiff peplum at the bottom of the jacket, typical of the period.
The pencil skirt is lined, has a narrow waistband, metal zipper, matching button fastening and a vent-type split at the back.
There's a little twist to the tale.
With five daughters clamouring after the precious suit for more than 50 years, Mum managed to keep it from us and a couple of years ago she let it go.
She gave it to me.
I still gasp when I look at it hanging in my closet.
I was only allowed to touch it with clean hands as a child.
Now, it fits perfectly and I'm completely overwhelmed with gratitude for a gift that is irreplaceable to me.
I will be keeping it safe from harm's way until my own daughter is well aware of the suit's history.
So just in case the sky falls, I thought I'd better get some pics of me in the suit.
I'm sorry there are so many, I don't usually add many pics, but I'm sure you'll understand.
In styling the suit, I didn't want to go all-out vintage, but instead chose modern accessories which I felt gave a nod to the 1940s.
I'm wearing Forever 21 black fishnets, Nine West bottle-green velvet wedges, black silk rose hairclip, assorted bangles and a leopard-print ponyskin belt worn around wrist.
Thank you Mum.
Do you have a similar story to share? A much-admired-from-afar piece that finally ended up with you? Do tell!