Mom’s choice was not my choice
When I was a 12 or so, every morning mom would choose the OOTD. I hated most of them from the bottom of my heart. Did I mention she was colorblind? However, this handicap was just an addition on top of it. Mom loved ruffles. Mom loved cute Laura Ashley floral pattern. She loved embroidery on clothes, lace, bright warm colors, baggy clothes – they have room for you to grow – she said. Gloves were on a crocheted band pulled throw the sleeves of my coat so I would not loose them! Worst of all, she loved comfy lace up shoes.
Choosing the type of item is not enough
Prior to the revolution, I had won some minor ground, but in principle not real ground. I said “I want to choose my own clothes. I want a word in what I wear. I do not want to wear pom pom hats, but headbands or berets.” Well, I got a headband, but she would pick it. Thus, my Ali McGraw headband was orange with a beige flower and teal leaves. I only loved the color of the leaves.
Jeans on the holiday gift list
Every year prior to the holiday season my sister, brother, and me were asked what gift we would like. She expected me to name a toy. “A pair of jeans.” She looked astonished despite we always got clothes on top of one toy. She said I should not worry, I would get new clothes. “What else do you want?” “Nothing else, but a pair of jeans.” “No, you won’t get them.” she said. Needless to say I instead got a pair of egg yolk yellow jersey pants, as did my sister. However, she was lucky as Gladstone Gander, hers didn’t fit. Thus, I ended up with both pairs. Yack! I was furious and complained to my granny.
Fake or look-alike jeans
On my next birthday, I got a pair of wide leg pants from my grandparents. These pants were at least the right color and material, but the wrong cut and had the European weave. “Thank you” I said and pretended to be happy to make them happy. I was sure they were mom-approved as they were dress pants style.
My first jeans were a hand-me down
The next weekend my mom’s friend visited with a bag of hand-me-downs from her son. Going thru the bag with my mom I got very excited. There was a pair of well worn in, slightly distressed skinny Wranglers. My mom grasp them first and threw them on the trash pile. I quickly got them while my mom was excited about a pure wool sky blue wool sweater and handed it to me. Despite I loved the color and cable knit I said “Wool is itchy and irritates my skin. I don’t wear that sweater.” “It is hand-made, difficult to make and expensive.” “No way.” “Sure you do, and put that jeans back.” “No.” “Give it to me and take the sweater.” “I only wear the sweater with these jeans.” “No.” “I do. Promised.” “Ok, you are allowed to wear those jeans, but only around the house and during yard work, but you wear that sweater to school.” I rolled my eyes, then I smiled all over the face and said “It’s a deal, but I also want to put my outfits together myself.” “Then you will not wear the sweater.” “I will.” “Well if you don’t I put the jeans into the trash bag.” “You will have no reason to do so” I said.
Jeans to school
At that moment when I had rolled my eyes, I had realized she would not know if I would wear them to school. She would be still in bed when I left for school and I would just have to wear the Wranglers when school ended late as then she would be already in bed taking a nap when I came back. Regarding the sweater, it looked so much nicer with a shirt underneath and that styling also solved the itchy problem.
Today – jeans in fashion over 40
I still love skinny jeans, distressed jeans, sky blue, and baggy cable knit sweaters with some sort of shirt underneath.
Did you have to fight for your fashion and style decision as a teenager? What was your battle? Were you allowed to wear jeans to school? Let me know, I am curious.
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Photos: G. Kramm
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