Thursday, April 21, 2011

Easter Dresses

Out of the blue this morning as I was drinking coffee, I thought about my mother and cried. My mom had style and movie star looks.....she had olive skin, brown eyes and hair the color of deep rich coffee. My first memories of her beauty rituals...... brown Maybelline eye pencil, cake mascara, and red lipstick......and she sweetly wore the Evening in Paris perfume that my brother and I talked our dad into buying for her every Mother's Day.

I remember her at family gatherings when I was a child, always slim, her legs crossed, and a cigarette between her fingers.....I knew that I would never be that beautiful. When my oldest sister married her husband told her, one of the reasons he asked her to be his wife was because our mom was so beautiful, he knew my sister would age well.

Every Easter, my mom would go shopping....when I was small there were always frilly ruffled dresses with starched lacy crinolines, patent leather shoes and of course a hat. As I grew older, at last the ruffles were cast aside, but every Easter I got a new dress, and so did my mom.
One of my all time favorites.....and the only time it ever happened......we had dresses alike, almost........hers was black, mine was white. I loved that dress!
My mother loved suits and tailored clothing.....her favorite color was red. She wore high heels until she was eighty-five, I inherited my love of shoes from her. She never looked her age, and took great delight when people would exclaim about how young she looked. Something else I inherited......her nightly ritual......ALWAYS, take your makeup off, ALWAYS put your night cream on. Even when she knew she was dying, she wanted her nails done, her hair done.
Some might say she was vain, and maybe on some level she was......but she also knew that in this world, as unfair as it is, people are judged by how they look......she would tell you looks were not everything, but it was important to make the most of what the good lord gave you.

My mom struggled with me, I was blonde and blue eyed and fair opposite of her.
I entered a high school beauty pageant on a dare once, (no, I did not place) that night when we got home, she told me, as kindly as she could, don't ever do that again, it is not where you belong.
Did I say that tact was not one of her strong points?ha ha!

She taught me to sew my own clothes, she made many of hers and mine. In high school, I made almost everything I wore.......I have had the itch to sew again lately. I was good at it, my first major was fashion design.

Easter brings a flood of memories for me about my mom, I didn't get her looks, but I think she taught me style. She was a stickler for posture, for manners and dare I mention again, she passed on her love of shoes to me! I have had the urge the past few weeks to go buy dresses, I think once again, it is the Easter holiday and memories of her that have triggered those urges.
I see her now, in her favorite dress shop, looking, trying on and the look of delight when she found the one. Shopping with her was fun, and honestly, since she passed I have done very little shopping at the mall, it is just not the same.

We sent her off in style, in a rosy red suit......I am sure she is somewhere tonight wondering why I don't have a new Easter dress.


  1. Wow, your Mom sounds like my grandmother and I did not inherit any of her traits either. Except for the style of clothing we both love.

    If you find that dress... don't forget the hat :)
    Jules @ Trying To Get Over The Rainbow

  2. This was a touching post and portrayed your mother in a beautifully poignant way. This is the first of your posts I have read..but I will be back!! Hugs!

  3. Sorry you cried about your Mom. I was thinking this morning just how unstylish I actually am - and I have passed it onto my girls. oops.

    Your Mom sounds like a lovely woman. I miss mine too - I do understand.

  4. I posted one recently about my mom & had fun remembering things about her to share with my blog family. Have a great friday & a wonderful weekend.

  5. That was a lovely tribute to your mum - she was obviously very beautiful and your described her so well. I don't think she was vain at all. My mum was in a nursing home when she was 84, but I still made sure that the staff knew to put her earrings in and let her wear her necklaces, and put her moisturizer on, because that is how she always looked. I still miss her very much. Lovely post.

  6. Ohhhh, I wish, wish that you had attached a picture of her!! I'd love to see it! Funny, my mother, while not looking like yours, was much like her in some ways. It was a different generation and "dressing" was how others thought of you. My grandfather used to tell my mother that unless she got "cleaned up", she could not go into town with him. She was always saying to us "what will others think of you if you wear that?" She was a larger woman but bought many of her clothes from Lord & Taylor and Saks to look nice. In my early years when they could not afford it, she made many of our clothes too and we wore look alike clothes for many Easters.
    You mother sounds beautiful, but then from your blog pic you look just gorgeous!!! Being a brunette all my life and envying blondes, I bet Rick would agree!!
    I know that feeling of seeing something that reminds you of your mother and tearing up at the memories. So precious.

    I say....go have fun shopping and get a pretty Easter dress!!!

  7. You described that generation so well. They all dressed "up" as they called it. And posture and manners were often paramount.

    As I was finishing my career, the office had gone to "casual dress" and it had gone waaaay too far. People were coming to work looking like they just fell out of bed. I hated it.

    This was a wonderful tribute to your mother. My own passed away a year ago this week and she has been often in my thoughts. So this was a very affecting post for me.
    Have a wonderful day.....Marsha