When Kylie, over at Lucy Violet Vintage, wrote about her year 12 social with a photo of her resplendent in a tartan taffeta dress, well I couldn't believe my eyes! Because Kylie was "that girl" - you know, the sort of girl you wished you could be. I wished I could be that girl with that frock and those friends at my year 12 school social.
Instead, I attended my high school dance as a quietly belligerent 80's punk. I wore a wedding dress which I had cut up and sprayed with splashes of black fabric paint, accesorised with leopard print leggings and lace up boots and hair standing 6 inches up off my head. Yes! I was that girl.
But wait! That's not all! The afternoon before the dance, I also dyed my hair electric blue. No big deal these days - but back then in the dim dark 80's, I had to get my sister in the city to buy the hair dye and post it to me - the parcel arriving on the day. Okay so I know I was looking a bit different but thought there was a level (a low level but a level more or less!) of acceptance of me and my funny clothes and sticking up hair within the school community. (Yes I know the girls told me I couldn't do my deb because I would ruin the phots but they were joking right?)
Have you ever had one of those moments when you fall into a ravine? When you're like Wylie coyote in "Road Runner" and you've stepped off a cliff but haven't realised it yet? And you're running in the air, just before you plummet? Well that was me, arriving at the dance. I thought everyone would go, "Oh look! There's Julianne looking freaky as usual". I didn't expect the gasp followed by the silence. Me running desperately in the air before I started the rapid descent!
I hid in the toilets for some time but I could hear other people at the sinks talking about me in there too. So I was dragged out of there by a friend and managed to have a good time....up until my high-school-drop-out-ex-boyfriend gate crashed the dance, drunk, and caused a kerfuffle. (And yes, dear reader, I married him! Needless to say he is now a very successful professional and I am no longer married to him).
But thanks to dear Kylie at Lucy Violet Vintage - I was able to re-live my high school dreams, cast away the nightmare past and feel like the bell of the ball in this, a pure silk tartan taffeta designer dress from the 80's that arrived as a sweet soft parcel in my letter box last week. Kylie found it at the op shop and remembered my comment about always wanting such a dress! What a gem, right?
Has anyone seen the episode of Bob's Burgers where Bob's wife encourages him to re-live his disastrous school dance experience - where he was dumped by his date and didn't even go - by being chaperones at their daughters dance? And then to complete the experience his wife gets drunk on peach schnaps and pukes on him? Well, fortunately, my night out on the town in my high-school-dance-dream-dress was nothing like that.
In fact, I wore it to see Dolly Parton in concert! She was a shining super star that night who warmed the crowd with her generous angelic voice and stories of her hillbilly youth as one of 12 kids. And yes, I shed more than a few tears because she still manages to crack open my heart.