She's going to have to settle for a double post today, one of which is to introduce a new segment to the old bloggity blog. As you probably know, I have a soft spot for both vintage and historical fashion. The Rate the Dress segment of The Dreamstress's blog is one of my favorites as is the website, A Dress A Day. There are a host of blogs dedicated to showing real life examples of the fashions of the day, however, there is one thing most of them lack, and that is women of color.
When we think of black women and fashions of the past, well, let's be honest. I don't think most people think of black women and fashions of the past. We tend to think of black women of the times in one of three ways.
|Arkansas sharecropper, 1936|
Maids, slaves, and/or poor and downtrodden. Obviously, given the social climate, many women did live in these circumstances. However, that doesn't mean all black women did nor does it mean those who did gave no thought to fashion or dressing well. Far from the truth actually. Though the images are less common than their white counterparts, many of whom also worked as servants, maids, and in other poor, less fortunate straits, black women were just as interested in their manner of dress and spanned all sorts of socio-economic lines.
Don't get me wrong. There are some sites out there that shout out to my beautiful sisters of color. My current favorite is the Vintage Black Glamour tumblr site. But there aren't near enough and since this blog focuses on sewing, housemaking, and vintage/historical fashion, I thought it would be nice to do my part to fill in the gap. I'll also be adding women of other colors as I find them and provide whatever information I can find to go along with it.
Shall we get started?
|Bessie Coleman, the first black female aviator|
|Aida Overton Walker,|
The Queen of the Catwalk
Somewhat related but if you haven't read Cane River by Lalita Tademy, you really should. You should also read this article and perhaps even The New Elegant Black Woman's whole blog. I'm not really sure how I feel about her viewpoint as I just found it and haven't had time to digest but on its face, there are definitely some things there to make you say hmmm.