Tuesday, February 21, 2017

What Ever Happened to the Easter Bonnet?

In your Easter bonnet, with all the frills upon it,
You'll be the grandest lady in the Easter Parade.
It was just as much a fixture of Easter as deviled eggs, and new shoes for Easter services. The Easter bonnet was even so much of a fixture of the holiday that it had it's own song. Where ever did it go?
So why new hats at Easter?
Well the tradition appears to have origins in the Christian custom of Easter being the time for new clothes after the fasting of Lent, and the Church-going notion of wearing your "Sunday Best", meaning that at Easter your best had to be "better than best" to celebrate the resurrection of Christ.
The custom of wearing hats at Easter is also tied to the American tradition of The Easter Parade, which emerged in the 1870s after the end of the Civil War. People were stepping out with positivism in their lives, and women would stream out of the churches following the Easter service dressed up in their best, and often new clothes, including that ever important bonnet.
The 1948 film "Easter Parade" starring Fred Astaire and Judy Garland, and the music of Irving Berlin really immortalised the practice of wearing Easter Bonnets, with the popular song "Easter Parade" which was originally written in 1933 and became one of the most popular songs about Easter.
Although Bonnets started out as a practical form of head wear they became more and more elaborate as the 19th Century progressed, and its clear that as the tradition of the Easter parade grew in popularity, the bonnets that accompanied them became more and more outlandish and much less bonnet-like! At the depths of the Great Depression a new hat at Easter, or a refurbished old one, was a simple luxury.
Now, in a more casual society, Easter Bonnets are becoming harder to find, as fewer and fewer women bother with the tradition. Modern Easter bonnets for children are usually white wide-brimmed hats with a pastel colored satin ribbon around it and tied in a bow. It may also have flowers or other springtime motifs on top, and may match a special dress picked out for the occasion.
Poor Robin, an 18th-century English almanac maker, offered the verse
At Easter let your clothes be new
Or else be sure you will it rue.
Is there a resurgence of the Easter Bonnet?
Karen Grigsby Bates, on NPR's Code Switch team said... There is often, for those of us who are a certain age, the Easter outfit. You know, your shiny patent leather shoes and your dress with too many crinolines underneath it and - even little kids had hats. I had Easter hats when I was little.
Today many women still continue this tradition using Easter as a time to show off the new, members of the Royal Family especially like to carry on this tradition!
"For a while, Easter bonnets sort of fell out of vogue —it became more of a day for the children — but last year and this year, I've seen the resurgence of that tradition," says Song, who owns Detroit-based Mr. Song Millinery.
"I think there has been in the last year more presence of hats in magazines, and on TV, and I believe that these leave an impression on people. The fashion industry had disregarded this whole sector of fashion. But everybody just woke up to the fact that there's that head that we have to deal with all the time. … And anybody who wears hats, they'll tell you it completes an outfit."
So, happily there may be hope that the lovable Easter Bonnet will be making an appearance for many springtime's to come. Do you have yours?

Thursday, January 12, 2017

A Collection of Vintage Birthday Party Photos

Once again we go back to a simpler time. A moment of happiness, and anticipation. Join me in another trip down memory lane through the photos of past birthday celebrations.

A Photo collection from a simpler time, and place. I hope you enjoy it.

Monday, July 4, 2016

Happy 4th of July from the Early 1900s America

Photos and sounds from the early 1900's America on it's 4th of July Birthday. Take a little trip back in time for Americas birthday. Celebrate the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776.
Recordings from the Library of Congress






Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Vintage Toys for Girls and Boys


A collection of old, and vintage photos of boys and girls, and their toys from the early 1900's on. Take a trip back to your, or your grandparents childhood. Relax and enjoy, and please subscribe for more!




Wednesday, November 11, 2015

A Thanksgiving Day Parade Pictorial History, the 1920s and 1930s

The Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade is an annual parade presented by the U.S.-based department store chain Macy's. The tradition started in 1924, tying it for the second-oldest Thanksgiving parade in the United States with America's Thanksgiving Parade in Detroit (with both parades being four years younger than the 6abc Dunkin' Donuts Thanksgiving Day Parade in Philadelphia). The three-hour Macy's event is held in New York City starting at 9:00 a.m. Eastern Standard Time on Thanksgiving Day, and has been televised nationally on NBC since 1952.

In the 1920s, many of Macy's department store employees were first-generation immigrants. Proud of their new American heritage, they wanted to celebrate the American holiday of Thanksgiving with the type of festival their parents had loved in Europe.

In 1924, the annual Thanksgiving parade started by Louis Bamberger in Newark, New Jersey at the Bamberger's store was transferred to New York City by Macy's. In New York, the employees marched to Macy's flagship store on 34th Street dressed in vibrant costumes. There were floats, professional bands and live animals borrowed from the Central Park Zoo. At the end of that first parade, as has been the case with every parade since, Santa Claus was welcomed into Herald Square. At this first parade, however, the Jolly Old Elf was enthroned on the Macy's balcony at the 34th Street store entrance, where he was then "crowned" "King of the Kiddies." With an audience of over 250,000 people, the parade was such a success that Macy's declared it would become an annual event.



Friday, November 6, 2015

In a pile of leaves

Do children today still play in leaf piles?
Sometimes I wonder how many kids even play outside anymore, and I choose not to think how the vast majority spend their time indoors. In these days of Reality T.V. and lax FCC rules one can't help but look back fondly on those days spent outside just playing, and exploring the world outside. Letting your imagination construct your games, and riding your bike until dusk. Dusk, because you had to be home by dark.
I remember my friend and I playing "Pirates" with sticks, and of course "Cowboys and Indians", or just running around in the woods, hunting for the unknown! I also remember that my brothers and I had a "go-cart". Taking turns riding it in the alley. Back then it seemed as if we played all day, every day. We would have never have thought to just sit inside, unless we had to because of the rain.
There were chores that we had to do around the house, and I don't recall being paid for it. If we needed money for candy, me, my siblings, and friends would walk around the block collecting empty soda bottles to turn in to the neighborhood grocery store. There were always bottles to be found, and you really didn't need that many to buy a decent amount of candy.
School was a whole different atmosphere as well. You dressed neatly because your appearance reflected your family, and because your mom said so. You behaved, because if you didn't there was a price to pay. I once had a teacher tell my mom to instruct me to raise my hand when I had a question rather than going up and tapping her on the shoulder (which was startling her).
It's 10 p.m. Do you know where your children are? It was a popular question used as a public service announcement (PSA) for parents on American television. Its heyday was throughout the 1960s, 1970s, 1980s. It was first launched by a small ABC affiliate in upstate New York, and it worked. I would hate to tell you how many kids I see now running around past curfew, and I wonder where the parents are.
We had a bedtime. We had rules...
Make your bed.
Never call anyone after 9
Put your dirty clothes in the hamper.
Put your plate in the sink after eating.
We took turns doing dishes. There were 5 of us.
Don't leave the house without permission.
Take a bath, comb your hair, brush your teeth, shine your shoes.
Occasionally we would get to go to a Drive in Theater. That was a treat. Speaking of treats... Every once in a while we would be allowed to buy an ice cream from the Ice cream Man. I don't remember that many "fast food" meals, but we all remember liver night, blah! Even considering the liver (which the dog loved), I think it was a great time to be a kid.

I would be so happy if you would take the time to comment, and share your memories. Flying kites, sledding in the snow, school plays, we have all done them. I am sure that there are still parents out there making fond memories for their children, just as I am sure that those in the future will do the same. I hope you have enjoyed this little trip down Memory Lane, and please come back soon for more. - David