Monday, 23 September 2013

Because I’m into vintage…

Vintage things have always been a big part of my life — my mum is antiques obsessed and I’ve inherited her love of pretty things; history was one of my favourite subjects at school and, I’m in my very early 30s and am fortunate enough to still have four wonderful grandparents, all of whom have very different experiences growing up in my favourite era.

One of my two lovely nannas.

But two things have happened in the last few months that have made me think a lot about what people think of vintage, pinup and rockabilly folks like me. The first was I went on a date with a very nice guy who kept asking me why the 50s. Was it just the clothes and the hair, or was it other things too? Would I go back if I could? It was hard for me to explain to him that it was mainly 50s, but not only 50s. But it was also hard for me to explain, without him acting overly chivalrous and assuming that just because I'm into vintage, doesn't mean I wanted a man to take care of my every need, drive me everywhere, open the car door every single time I got in or out...(there was more, but you get the picture).

The second thing was this blog post by Mary Van Notes that was re-posted a few times: ‘Just because I wear vintage…’ (the title of my post is an adaption of Mary's post - credit where it's due!)
So, this guy and this blog post got me thinking a lot. There are many things on that ‘just because I wear vintage’ post that I actually do (like watch Mad Men), or want to do or wish I could do (like roller derby or swing dancing – one day I will do both!), but there are many things that are super accurate.
The big one for me is:  “just because I wear vintage, doesn’t mean I want to live in the past.” There are many, many things that I get all nostalgic over and wish I could experience it for myself. But that doesn’t mean I hate living in the naughties. I don’t mind doing housework and keeping my place clean and tidy, but I love my washing machine. I love cooking and baking from scratch, but boy, am I ever desperate to get a Thermomix. 

Just because I dressed as a 50s housewife for my housewarming that one time...
I’m a bit old fashioned. I do often refer to myself as a bit of a 50s housewife because I love cooking and baking, I love feeding my family and friends, I have fairly extreme ideas of what is clean, tidy and organised. I dream of restoring a workers’ cottage into vintage glory and filling it with duck egg blue kitchen appliances and retro furniture. I mostly dress like a pinup girl, but sometimes I go for rockabilly, or a 60s mod, a 70s hippy. When I have people around, I always clean, tidy, vacuum and have something homemade ready to go, even if they’re just dropping in. I think table manners are important and host gifts are essential. All of those things. But that doesn’t mean I would expect to be the only one in my house (if it had more than me living in it!) doing the housework, cooking and cleaning. It doesn’t mean I think I am a failure because I am 31 and single.
I’m old fashioned, but I’m modern too. I am good with computers and gadgets, I love to play around with Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter and I’m here, blogging. I have an excellent corporate job, a diploma, a university degree and post-graduate certificates. I mostly wear vintage or vintage repros, but sometimes, I just want to rock some Black Milk Sesame Street leggings or dress up like a superhero for Supanova and that’s okay too.
Sometimes I dress in Sesame Street leggings. Because I can.
I have my own car, my own bank account. I can vote, I can make decisions about my body and how to take care of it with regardless of whether I’m married or not. I’m not particularly concerned about marriage, but I know I want to be a mum. Even if I’m still single when I choose to have babies, that’s ok, because it's 2013 and not 1952, I have the option of doing it on my own. 

If I had a time machine, I would definitely go back and spend some time in other decades. But I’m pretty bloody glad that I was born in the 80s, grew up in the 90s and am an adult in the 00s because I’ve got the freedom now to live the best of all of those worlds.

1 comment:

  1. Great post. I feel you on all this! I feel very similar. There are aspects of myself that are traditionally feminine in that 50s sort of way and yet there's a lot of me that isn't, and I'm cool with that. I also watch Mad Men and wouldn't mind learning to swing dance, it was more that I get annoyed that people think that of me. I don't like being put in boxes!