Adapting to Change – Dress

I think I could write a book on the changes of dress over the past seventy years! As a child in the 40’s I only wore dresses. We didn’t have very much money so my mother made my dresses, many were hand-me-downs that she made over for me. In 1946 – ’48 we lived in Covington, Oklahoma where there was a feed store that sold pretty printed feed bags. My Kids in Covington, Okla.sister, Lorraine, and I would pick out the prettiest bags, Mother would buy them for a few cents and make us new dresses! In this picture we both have on our feed sack dresses! Notice she trimmed them to dress them up a little! My mother was an excellent seamstress.  I remember a used adult coat she took apart to remake for me. It was beautiful, fit me perfectly, kept me warm and I loved it! I wish I had a picture of it but I don’t.

In about 1950 or ’51 when we lived in Elk Run Heights, Iowa near Waterloo, my cousins, friends and I had so much fun! Down the road, across the railroad tracks and a little farther down the road was a pasture with cows. A creek ran under the railroad tracks and through the pasture. We’d slip under the fence and run to the creek. We found a perfect place for swimming! I learned to float and to dive down and swim under water. The only problem was I couldn’t wear a swimming suit. I had to swim in a dress… Well, that didn’t stop me! Oh, we had so much fun! It was during those years I got Anita & Billy0003my very first pair of pants to wear for play. This is a picture of Billy and me. It must have been a cold day because he’s all bundled up but I wanted to show off my new pants! It looks like I’ve got new saddle shoes on too!

We moved to Des Moines, Iowa when I was going into 8th grade. We always dressed up for church. Always. I never felt like I was showing off…we dressed out of respect for God’s House. About the main time I bought new clothes was for Easter! But it wasn’t for

Anita Going to Church0004showing off, it was just what everyone did. This is me in 1953. I bought this new outfit with my babysitting money! Suit, hat, gloves, purse, nylons and shoes!

In 1954 I got my first swimsuit!                        I, along with some

Anita 19540002friends, went to a youth camp near Minneapolis, Minnesota for a week in the summer. A generous friend paid my way to camp. I had to have a swimming suit! Here I am. I never did go swimming at camp but we sure had fun in the row boats!

I never wore shorts, ever.

This next picture Jerry has been carrying in his wallet for 55 years! It’s

Anita swimsuit 1958me in a swimsuit, taken the summer before we were married!

Don’t worry…I’ll not put a picture of myself in a swimsuit today! But I can assure you, I’d never be seen in a tiny two piece swimsuit.

Looking at my pictures and seeing girls today, you can see why it’s taking some adjusting on my part.

I’m proud of my granddaughters. They are in style but they are maintaining their dignity.

Dress is so different today. In my younger days we dressed modestly. But today modesty is out, for the most part. It seems that the more you show, the more in style you are. That’s hard for me to understand and accept. I would be embarrassed to death if my bra straps showed…today it’s the style to show them!

I don’t understand why folks don’t dress up for church. I still do. I always will. To me it’s a matter of respect. It doesn’t make me a better person or a better Christian. It simply makes me feel better about myself. I like putting my best foot forward. I’ve been told there are places where folks still dress up for church. I’m so glad and I wish we did here but most folks don’t.

I was pregnant five times. I made some of my maternity dresses but not all of them. Oh boy, what a difference in maternity clothing today. I think I like mine better! I was proud of being pregnant but I didn’t want to show off my belly. This is very hard for me to understand.

I’ll be turning 75 this year. I’m trying to be tolerant and understanding of the way folks dress today. I thought writing and posting pictures of my past might be therapy for me and might help my readers to understand a little of where I’m coming from.

There’s so much more I could write but for now I’m finished. I may write more later but I’m feeling drained right now. Times and dress change and I must change with the times and be accepting of most of the new fashions…but not all!

About allinadayofme

I can't believe I'm in old age! I'm now in my eighties! I'm a child of God, wife to one, mother to five, grandmother to 15 plus two granddaughters-in-law! I'm a great-grandma now! I'm a sister, aunt, cousin, friend and neighbor. I'm a housewife and former ESL tutor. I love reading and writing. I've just retired from writing and editing a newsletter, Prime Time News, for seniors. I love genealogy, traveling, birds and animals, blogging and taking pictures.
This entry was posted in Adapting, Challenge, Childhood, Church, Dress, Easter, Family, Fashion, Friends, Grandchildren, Iowa, Life, Me, Memories, Michigan, Mother, Oklahoma, Swimming and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Adapting to Change – Dress

  1. sydneyandkay says:

    This blog Is wonderful! I completely agree and I NEVER wear anything else besides a skirt or a dress to church and I always dress appropriately and I am glad I do! I respect clothing and I don’t want to show anything off and at my church it’s not to bad ally of people dress up! So I am trying to cheer you puny telling you the good things because there are alky of problems your right . Hopefully people will dress more Appropriately soon and it is just a faze like the 80’s? Not that it was like it but ya know hopefully people will realize to dress appropriately from now on ! Everyone read this blog and you will understand ! Very well written grandma! I Love you so much!
    Syd ❤


  2. Sue Husted says:

    I just love this new series of posts you are doing. I can identify with a lot of things you are talking about from the past. Keep the stories and pictures coming. It looks like you were a slick chick in your day, in the bathing suits and the things you wore. I remember making some of my clothes too, when I was in high school and college. My mom and grandma sewed some, and did mend a lot. I remember feed sacks for sure. And oxford shoes. I took 4 yrs. of home ec. The 4th yr. we made taylored suits, and I was so proud of mine, it was royal blue, a box suit they called it, with a silk lining. I sewed in college and made look alike vests for couples who wanted them. Look alike shirts and jackets were big back then. Thanks for helping me to remember.


    • Thanks for being a friend to me. It’s fun to go back and remember times and friends. I only took one or two years of home ec but I wish I would have taken more. My mother took home ec all through high school. She was an excellent seamstress.


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