If I Lived 130 Years Ago
My mental image of myself would be something like this:
“I declare, I’m laced so tight I can only languish in this chair — but I do it so beautifully.”
“Not only am I perfectly turned out, but I am ready for any weather eventuality. And you know what, I am going to have this portrait clearly labeled to everyone knows where it should be placed.”
Or at the very least this:
“Not only am I perfectly turned out, but my home is an orderly and welcoming center of culture. Tea from a samovar, anyone?”
I would admire women dressed to the nines like this:
“If I can afford it, I’m wearing it. Fortunately for me, Coco Chanel is only 3 years old and has not yet told anyone, ‘Before you leave the house, look in the mirror and take one thing off.'”
But in reality, I would probably actually look like this:
“Are we almost done here? I have biscuits to make, floors to scrub, and kids to chase off of my lawn.”
(And did you notice? It turns out I have at least two pictures of someone with an umbrella.)
I saw only one umbrella. Love these pictures. I admire all the work that went into those clothes. Glad I didn’t live back then!
I had a picture with an umbrella in yesterday’s post, and I thought that was the only photo of this type that I had ever seen with an umbrella in it.
I DID notice the second photo with umbrella! And my goodness that woman had a lot of beads on her breasts! I would say, if I were one of these women, it would most likely be the tea lady. She looks neat and practical, and with her thumb cocked, she looks just slightly nervous about the photo session.
She looks like a good one to be. My practical lady could bring over some biscuits (which your tea lady would not eat, to keep her girlish figure) and sit and trade quilt scraps and commiserate about local kids. 🙂
Oh, ABSOLUTELY I would eat bisquits, with some lovely summer jam! 🙂
I always have mustang grape jelly and peach preserves available. I think we will stick with peach for you so there’s no chance of getting a stain on your lovely outfit!
I noticed the umbrella too! The bead lady not only looks rather fierce but also seems to have an unfeasibly high bosom. They all look smart compared with how we dress today – though I’d rather wear today’s clothes.
Yes, wouldn’t we get looks if we tried to walk down the street in fitted and beaded dresses, even if they were in modern style!
So. Much. Fabric. Wonderful photos–weren’t there any cowgirls back then? I see you finding a way to be more comfortable than the ladies in these photos!
Of all the pictures I have collected, I only have 2 I know to be from Texas. In one of those, the lady is dressed very plainly, just like the lady in the last photo in this post. In the other, the dress has a big ruffle at the yoke and some silk flowers, but it doesn’t come close to the fanciness seen in some of these. Some of these look so confining, you are right, they would not be good for doing actual work!
My advice is you should forget all that cataloguing and take up a career as a caption writer. Coco Chanel indeed! Thanks for the bright spot amidst other darker areas.
You are welcome!
I am just channeling what these ladies would say if they had a chance! Spending all that time scanning their images puts their opinions in my head. 🙂
I too, would be the last photo. Whenever I see old photos like these I always think the same things….they look so uncomfortable. And they had to get hot. And wouldn’t be great if we could see what those dresses looked like in color?
And I love looking at the fit of the really nice dresses, but there’s no ease in some of them! You wouldn’t be able to gain an ounce and still fit in your clothes.
And the dresses, as snugly fit as they are, are only one part of the problem. All the layers of undergarments would do me in!
I loved the humour of this post- my smile for the day. (Wonderful photos and commentary too!)
Oh good, glad I could contribute a smile to this world. We need them!
I think someone needs to tell the bead lady that her rack’s too ginormous for all that decor! Lol!! What a great post! But I’d look like the biscuit lady, too.
Have you seen the vintage ad from Singer (I think), about how to prepare for sewing? The suggestion that stood out the most was fresh lipstick! Oh my!!
Maybe Singer and Maybelline were owned by the same corporation by that time? But probably not, or there might have been ads that said, “Before you apply lipstick, make sure you have done some sewing today.”
I don’t envy those women the tight and hard-to-clean clothes, but I do envy them their sense that any shape was the right shape, that older ladies could look like ladies and not like skinny 12-year-olds! 🙂
That was SO funny and true……I’m for the last one! 12″ waist? I think not 🙂 Lets get those biscuits going!!
Sounds like I better get baking for this virtual tea party we are having! 🙂
This post is a delight! More of your lifestory in pics please!!
That is a great idea! I will have to get on it right away. Those pictures just bring out the storyteller in me!
I’m absolutely the woman who has chores to do and children to chase away. These are great pictures! If you find a picture of a woman in an old lunatic asylum that will be me by the end of the week!
School will be starting soon! Hang on until then! 🙂
LOL My “baby” is almost 32. I have to rent kids to holler at nowadays!
That would be a great way for kids to make money. Easier than mowing lawns. “Hey kids, rent yourself out to those people who miss their days with kids at home! Toss some toys, leave some crumbs, get yelled at, go home richer!”
$5.00 bonus if you let them ground you for 30 minutes!
I love the pictures! I think umbrellas were invented in the late 19th C so must have been a proud possession