I hear that statement nearly every day in this business. Truly, every damn day. Sometimes even from myself. Sure, sometimes our daily activities dont always call for wearing full skirted party dresses, encrusted with rhinestones and lace – but that doesnt mean wearing a dress is out of the question. Women from eras past wore dresses nearly every day. In some eras, they ONLY wore dresses, as womens pants were almost unheard of (hence the lack of vintage pants in the older eras). Only until the 1930s and 1940s were women wearing pants.. and very few at that. It was still quite the norm for women to wear dresses every day. I meet with women in their 80s and 90s almost weekly when I go on house calls – and I always ask, “Did you ever wear pants? Do you have any?” – And the answer always is no. Most women were never allowed to wear pants while living with their parents, especially if raised in a Catholic home (nevermind wear the color black! Yikes!)
But many women did wear dresses…and not just to dances or cocktail functions. They wore them everywhere. Women now, only wear them to “fancy” functions and need an excuse to purchase or wear a dress – and wear pants most of the time. Its funny how times have changed! My take is: You dont need an excuse or a function to wear a dress. Just wear one. Whats the big deal? If you feel too dressed up – isnt that a good thing? Isnt it better to feel too dressed up than under dressed? (Think: PJ bottoms and a tank top with flip flops – GAG!). I dont always dress to impress, but I try! My biggest excuse is the weather – living in the frozen tundra of NH kind of puts a damper on dress wearing for about seven months of the year (not to mention, the shoes are limited due to slush/snow/etc). But once that sun starts shining and those temps are rising – you cant get me out of a dress! And for those fancy dresses, sure – sometimes you need an occasion, yes. Dont have one? Create one! Make your boyfriend/husband take you out to a show/dinner/event! I have a closet full of pretty dresses that give me a good excuse to make the old man take me out for a nice time every so often 😉
Here are some great vintage photos of women wearing dresses – doing average things – just to show you that you dont have to be doing anything special to wear a dress.
Just wear one!
Putting on a bumper sticker – and wearing a dress.
Cutting a rug with your friends – and wearing a dress.
Grocery shopping with your homegirls – and wearing suits! HA!
Walking down the street – wearing a dress.
Hanging out with your friend and acting silly – wearing dresses.
Hitchhiking – and rocking a dress.
Hanging out with some boys and their dog – wearing a dress
Shopping at the local WalMart (?) – sporting a dress (as opposed to the preferred apparel)
Hanging out at Jenks Boardwalk at Point Pleasant New Jersey (my old stomping grounds!) – Wearing Dresses and Suits and Bikinis all in the same place!
Last but not least – taking care of babies – and rocking dresses! (this one is for you, Amy!)