what were we thinking?!?!

i remember seeing pictures of my parents. their wedding picture was particularly hilarious. or maybe it was just my dad’s suit. very 1975 and his hair and glasses were very much in style… then. i remember going through my mom’s packed away clothing and wearing her bell bottom overalls for hippie day at school. some of her dresses found their way to college with me and i would pull them out for a costume dance. it was always easy to look at their younger, smiling faces and wonder what exactly were they thinking?

and then, the late 80s and early 90s hit, from which i may never be able to redeem myself.

fortunately, for all of us, i don’t have any of those pictures with me in digital form. what a tale that bad, bad fashion era would tell!

  • i proudly wore my baggie t-shirts and was sure to double roll the sleeves
  • i wasn’t allowed to peg my pants… but i did, as soon as i got on the school bus! my mom would say, “if you only knew how silly you looked!” and i would brush her off as the less than trendy mother she was
  • when slouchy, scrunchy socks were all the rage, i wore them, i doubled them, i alternated their colors
  • a particularly exceptional outfit of mine in 6th grade was a pair of purple parachute pants (akin to m.c. himself) with a paint splattered pink and purple shirt (sleeves rolled) and puff paint hearts all over the front… i’ll let you borrow it sometime!
  • scrunchies – i made them myself and was extremely proud of my creations. they were so versatile… doubled up in your hair OR on your wrist!
  • the leggings phase that is creeping back into ghastly style (see below)
  • in 1990 as i waited for my school bus to whisk me away to 7th grade i rocked a hideous bandana turned wrap-around OVER my jeans with beads added… i know the visual is messy but just know it was a craft option at the family reunion that year… and while i stood there self consciously – everyone at the bus stop raved about that new song by vanilla ice
  • sticking with the very memorable 7th and 8th grade years, my friend jenny and i morphed into the exact same person where hair was concerned. we pulled half of our hair back, fastened it in a clip. our bangs were the icing on the creation. with curling iron in hand we curled the bangs, then we teased the bangs then we cemented the bangs in place with hair spray. really everyone had the claw bang, it was a necessary right of passage

all these years later my parents’ nerdy wedding picture is looking more and more hip and my fugly years are just plain out scary still. i know the 80s and 90s have found ways to creep back into style… but i firmly believe if we all do our part we can rip this problem out at the roots! if you need more ammunition for this very worthy cause, please examine the picture below circa 1993 or 1994 (thanks to matt for reminding me of that black hole of a time in my memory!)

the bottom line is this picture never should have happened! what was i thinking on so many levels!?

to echo my mother’s far distant admonition, did i know how silly i looked? and who is that guy (i honestly can’t remember) and why is he wearing an elf hat with his doc martens and why is his hand on my leg!?!?? am i really not wearing make up!?!??! my sisters were sporting it before middle school! and my fake keds with the white socks pulled over my leggings… i have no excuse. it’s shameful really. all i can say is that my best friend there, margaret, didn’t stop me then… hopefully she’ll be more forthcoming with fashion advice in the future!


4 thoughts on “what were we thinking?!?!

  1. >My BF Whitney and I planned our first day of 7th grade outfits to match- black spandex shorts and green paint splatter shirts (that we made in Young Womens). Oh, not forgetting the little round plastic buckle that you fed the corner of your T shirt through and cinched tight. Sigh. Fortunately for me we couldn’t find matching spandex and had to wear jeans. I never did peg my legs (I wasn’t tricky enough to do it on the bus;-) and I never owned an ESPIRIT bag. I did wear those big foam shoulder pads with T shirts and use a gallon of non aerosol (save the ozone!) hairspray on my hair.

  2. >I was your make-up pusher, telling you once you were 12 it was just peachy; but you declined. I insisted. You refused.The Jenny-morph years weren’t so bad. They netted you multiple front yard tee-peeing declarations of love from the boys.

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