Wednesday, April 6, 2011

My Style Lineage: A FTF Blog Event

Today, I'm very excited to be taking part in my first blogging event: Contra Unis hosted by Kristy Eléna of Full Time Fabulous. There was some talk of mistranslation, but whatever you want to call it, Sweet of Pens and Lens came up with the theme as a way to prompt participants to share a bit about their heritage or homeland.

I feel a strong connection to both my hometown of Boston and my Ashkenazi roots, but frankly, Red Sox tees and yarmulkes don't make for a compelling post. So, while I may not be able to visually represent where I come from, I can represent who I come from - and that's a long line of fashion-forward women.

My mother's mother was born in 1919 to Jewish immigrant parents from Lithuania. Growing up on a dairy farm near Boston with her seven siblings, it's difficult to imagine where she found style inspiration. But there she is, above, strutting her stuff in the Somali leopard coat that has since been passed on to me.

I've mentioned this before, but Grammy and her twin sister each got one of these coats as high school graduation gifts. The two of them together must have been quite a sight to see.

The twins married brothers and had their first children within days of each other in 1946, which is exactly where my mom comes into the picture. It seems the stylish little apple did not fall far from the tree, and Grammy and Mom took on the trends together decade after decade.

In the late '60s and early '70s, my mom moved to Manhattan to work as a buyer for Bonwit Teller's. The iconic department store is now closed, but to give you a sense of how fashionable it was, Joan Holloway worked there during her brief hiatus from Sterling Cooper. (And if you don't know what I'm talking about, please for the love of god, start watching Mad Men.)

That's my mom on the left, rocking widelegs and a headscarf.

When I dug out the photo on the left, my mom told me the pants were Chloe and the top was Ralph Lauren. I happen to think she rocked the '70s like no other.

Meanwhile, Grammy stayed stylish well into her 70s. 
Here she is on the left with her twin sister, my Aunt Sayde.

My mom wears blue velour to bring me to my dance recital (circa 1989ish).

Then, of course, there's me. Is it any wonder how I ended up a fashion blogger? Clearly, I grew up with inspiration galore, and I can only hope that a bit of it has rubbed off on me.


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