9 February 2017

Style Through the Decades

I get the same bus to work every day.

My journey to work is filled with people watching as the bus passes by people on the street and (discreetly of course!) looking around at my fellow bus passengers; trying to guess who they are and what their day holds from the way they are dressed.

There are two people that always catch my eye.  An old lady, must be at least 85 years old, gets on the bus every Wednesday morning.  Where she goes to, I do not know, but I am always fascinated by the way she dresses.

Her highly polished black court shoes with a tiny heel.  A little hat on her head with a beautiful hat pin. A smart coat (blue for Summer, red for Winter) and a black leather gloves.  She always looks immaculately dressed and like she has stepped right out of a 1950s novel.

I can imagine her in her younger years dressed like this:


Whilst I see the occasional elderly lady dressing this way, more often it is the elderly gentleman who have stuck to the more formal styles of the 1940s and 50s.  Everything from a suit with waist coat or a tie, to the jumper, tie and shirt combination.  There is one elderly gentleman who waits at the same bus stop every day; standing there with his bowler hat, beige coloured army style mac and a suit.  He is obviously far too old to be going to work.  Yet this is how he dresses every day.  I love it.

Back in the 1940s and 50s it was common place to look smart when you went out.  The hair was done, the shoes shined, the good coat on, the dress or the suit immaculate.



Years go by, society changes and styles evolve.  I remember asking my mum when I was 7 or 8 (and she was 46 or 47) why she did not wear jeans or trousers and her scandalized face that she would even think of wearing anything but a dress or a skirt.  For her, at that time, it was not the done thing.  

Whilst I am glad that times have now moved on to the point where my now 76 year old mother isn't adverse to wearing a pair of jeans or smart trouser;, I cannot help but mourn for the bygone era where you dressed up when you were leaving the house or going on a journey.

Each year I see less and less of the elderly women and gentleman with the smart clothing, dressed up to the nines; even if they were just going to the post office.

I look ahead towards the future and wonder what younger generations will think of us.  Will we be  the generation of  tracksuit bottoms?  I hope not.  I have made a pledge to myself that I will always dress smartly when I leave the house, whether I am 37 years old or 87.  We cannot let our grandparents' generation down.  Style is timeless.

2 comments:

  1. I get similar thoughts whenever I see a well dressed older lady or gentleman, or when I'm watching a film or TV show set before the 1960s, and the characters are dressed in immaculate clothes, with perfectly styled hair, and are wearing a hat or a hair scarf and gloves. I'm glad that we have the freedom to dress as casually or as smartly as we want these days, but another part of me is a little sad that we never got to experience the time when everyone dressed as smartly and perfectly as they could to fit in to society. It seemed so glamorous! I love the thought of wearing a hat and gloves with every outfit, and styling my hair just so. xx

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