Thursday, May 26, 2016

Fads of '48

When my sister Lonnie died last year it was left to my nephew to comb through the collections of her life. And my sister saved everything. He was lovely to ask what I wanted. One memento meant the most— her Betty Betz "Things 'n Stuff" scrapbook. She had started it the year she turned 15, her freshman year in high school. I was not allowed into this teenage world as I was only 6, though I would sometimes be reluctantly dragged along on outings (her reluctance not mine). What I would do was pour through her scrapbook when she was out of the house, being very careful and always putting it back in its hiding place.

It looked like being 15 was the most wonderful thing in the world. Never mind what was the true outcome of that. Many years later, when I admitted to Lonnie how I would sneak peeks, she told me she always knew but had let it go. We were both then very grown up women, looking through the scrapbook again, this time together.

With "Things 'n Stuff" now in my possession, I relived not only my life but hers. One thing I had forgotten was a page she drew titled "Fads of '48". She obviously had every intention of making a record for all eternity.

"Fads of '48"

It's always interesting how fashion fads begin. Try to remember that in 1948 we may have had movies and magazines, but nothing was instantaneous, and there was barely any television. Even developing photos at the drugstore took 5 days. Nevertheless fads existed and, by the looks of my sister and her friends, were followed. Herewith:
"Dad's old shirt, washed out jeans, loafers"
* * *
"A long full coat with a hood" or in this case, a babushka. 
Note the "stadium boots", de riguer for winter wear
* * *

"A full skirt...or a pencil thin one"

Pencil skirts... with pearls
* * *
"A ribbon around your neck, peasant blouse, a very full ballerina skirt with some petticoat showing, ballerina shoes"
The ribbon (with cameo), the peasant blouse and full skirt as a dress, ballet flats. I'm on the left, squinting as usual