I had a bit of an insight on the subject of my clothes-of-other-times fascination. I was browsing a kimono website, window shopping, and thinking that if I did place an order, I would want the under-garments, the accessory kits, etc. Part of attraction is found in the business of how it all goes together.
So, I realized that what is so interesting about Victorian clothing is, in part, the layers that build it, i.e. the drawers under the chemise, the chemise under the corset, the petticoats over the corset and chemise and so forth.
All of which parallels that which is interesting about the composition of a story, in the form of layers, structure, details and the final experience of pleasure–or not–depending upon the degree of success achieved in the balancing of all of these things.
Applying all of this to the subject of story-telling will have to wait for another post; this week is going to be a busy one.
Let me tell you something about attending ten different schools in twelve years. You can come out of it inclined to guard your privacy. You can develop an instinct that panics when you think you’ve screwed up flying under the radar of the self-appointed arbiters of fitting in.
Which is why it took me until now to post thoughts that occurred to me before Christmas.
It was a week or two before the holiday when a saleswoman looked at me and remarked–“I’ll bet you’re doing carolling.”
Since I was wearing a bronze, faux-silk, ankle-length skirt, laced boots, a black and red brocade jacket and a felted hat of decidedly bonnet-ish shape, I could understand her mistake. However. I had to explain that I just like to dress that way. She told me she liked it and we both went on our merry way.
About a year and a half ago I decided that it wouldn’t hurt anyone if I dressed the way I want to; I’ve hit THAT age. I suppose I could have taken the advice of a friend who told me it was time to acquire a few of those jogging/warm-up sorts of things and consider a shorter haircut. Maybe some orthopedic looking shoes to boot.
Except that I would have just loathed it.
When I was still in grade school, I was re-drawing my paper dolls to accommodate hairpieces so that I could trace around them and draw clothes for them from costume history. I had a doll with clothes from ancient Egypt through the latter 19th century. As that was nearly half a century ago, I think I may safely say that I have nearly always been fascinated with clothes from every era except the one in which I find myself.
Ergo. If I should to choose to ignore mainstream expectations in the matter of my closet,–and I may as well, as I don’t have a conventional job demanding otherwise–well, I was probably the only person I know surprised that the result is a bit Neo-Victorian.
And now you know something about me that I might consider private.
More to come.