Obviously, I don't have patterns for the dresses my mother made. Actually, I'm not sure she did either. The blue dress with the purple dogs did have a pattern, because I couldn't have made a dress without one. But, I have another dress in that pattern that my mother made for me for the Christmas dance of 1955 when I was a junior in high school. It looks completely different--but it has mother's signature style. Coverage. I never had a strapless prom or dance dress, although they were all the rage when I was in high school. Mine might be scooped, or plunging or sleeveless, or halter, but never, never strapless. Same for my sisters.
This dress is a lovely heavy white satin faille, and it was so luxurious, you can hardly see the hoop skirt underneath. The big red bow was mother's own seasonal touch. I removed the bow in 2000 to have the dress dry cleaned and it too was a beautiful, heavy fabric cut on the bias. My boyfriend of the moment wasn't much for dancing, so I think this wonderful dress sat on the sidelines most of the evening. However, I did take it to college and wore it several more times. My husband is a wonderful dancer.
Christmas dance 1955
The house on Hannah had a very large entry hall, with the dining room on the south side, and the living room on the north side. You can see the tall radiator next to the stair way, and there was a clothes closet directly behind that. About a year after this photo was taken, mother completely changed the color scheme and the floral wallpaper was removed and we went to beige. Everywhere. Maybe that's where I get it. My daughter says we have a beige life. I'll have to check with my sibs, but she may have also removed the wall between the entry hall and the living room to make it one large room.
Next, is a photo of my daughter in 8th grade trying on my old clothes.
Wearing Mom's dress