The Roaring Twenties are starting to make sense to me.
After an intense period of war and pandemic, this was an era of economic prosperity that gave us technological advancements in radio, telephone, cars and many electrical appliances for the home.
Modernity was a major theme of these years. Women had finally taken the right to vote and were beginning to claim their place in higher education and the workplace.
It was a period of excess, progress and of modern convenience.
This period also gave us the rise of the Jazz Age, dance clubs and flappers with their bobbed hair, shorter hemlines, silk stockings, fabulous accessories, and high heels.
After years of war, sickness and economic troubles, people just wanted to dress up and go have some fun.
Yesterday, I had nowhere to be and nothing to do when I got there but badly needed out of the house so I ran some errands. It is an exaggeration to say that my usual errand running attire these days is a step above homeless chic. However, it IS fair to say I have spent most of the last year in yoga pants and running shoes.
Yesterday I put on my favorite jeans, a cute jacket, my favorite hat, a necklace AND a shoe with a slight heel. My faux leather lime green purse looked cute with my blue sweater. I know this because I received several compliments and the pharmacist at CVS even asked why I was “all gussied up.”
Friends, it felt good to dress nicely. Note, I wasn’t dressed up. Just dressed better than my new normal. And evidently better than the normal at the pharmacy.
The experience made me want to put on a dress, get my hair done (perhaps a 1920s bob?) and go DO something! Maybe take myself out to dinner or a movie or stroll through a museum!
I am curious to see how this will all end up. Will the new normal be even more casual than before the pandemic? People were already wearing pajamas to the grocery store so it’s hard to believe we could get much more casual.
Or will we swing the other direction and embrace putting our best foot forward? Given how hard it is to buy a nice dress or work appropriate blouse, I suspect casual will win the war. But I’m going to do my best to push back.
And no, don’t look for me dancing on tables in a speakeasy! Just don’t be surprised to see me quietly browsing a bookstore in a dress and fabulous accessories.