Category Archives: Society

Dress Timeline 1989-1999

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Going through the closet in my old room this morning. Yes the wallpaper is the same bit pretty much all else is gone.

Before the wallpaper I had brilliantly written amazing quotes and song lyrics all over the white walls. My parents didn’t even flinch. I’m pretty sure I’d have a meltdown- the killer whales wallpaper was chosen with mom on a trip to the paint store. We both rolled our eyes and laughed when the clerk pointed out we were looking at a sample booked titled something along the lines oh ” just for men”. Scattered in among the choices were hunting ducks, Labradors and my beloved killer whales.

I knew that mom and dad have recently been paring down, and my closet had become a second closet for mom,s work suits. I thought I’d open the door and take a peek. Pretty cleaned up. I saw MY three milestone dresses hanging together on the side.

These dresses: love them. Never a dress wearer or girly girl growing up. I love dresses now, but then it was only a special occasion. All three dresses made by Parin Daredia.

Parin, a neighbor that owned and Indian fabric shop, a refugee to Canada from Uganda ousted Idi Amin. Mom used to babysit her son. She knew me from about 3 years old. I loved her shop with bangles, strange candies, spicy smells. Her kitchen was even better!! Anyhow Parin…

Grade 9. The church part was lovely I still catch myself humming the hymns. The banquet part, is forgettable. I’d been at that school for only 9 months but was definitely going to the celebration. My beautiful satin paisley patterned dress. Made just for me. Me and mom went to the mall picked out the pattern, and went to Parin’s. she delivered!! I felt like a Princess (as much as I fought it).

Grade 12- high school was less than desirable. So much going on. Internally externally. Children thinking they know it all, pretending they understand the world around them. Trying to assert themselves but really still wanting guidance. Ugh. Grade 12 grad. Again the event was ?? But the dress!! I started at Parin’s shop, loving the colours and flowy fabric- I wanted a rainbow punjabi pant suit. Always ahead of my time!! ( did I mention the plaid pants?)

I settled on a dress. Looking at it now I must of been a size 6 or so. Maybe smaller- I recall thinking I was fast. Wow, the media did and does a great job on a girls head. Anyhow a family trip to Oregon and Washington did not turn up the desired fabric. Much like the wall writing- my parents drove all over looking for fabric. Bellingham, Seattle it was supposed to be Easter break not pacific northwest fabric shopping! I may not have been “girly” but I am a diva!!
So finally secured fabric at home. I had to have the stained glass! Return to Parin’s. Pattern, fabric go. She made the corset from scratch including each button wrapped in the stained glass fabric. If nothing else I have always been one of a kind when it came to my clothes!!

1999 – my wedding day. I couldn’t have planned a more amazing, special, romantic and amazing day. From the groom 🙂 to the venue, ceremony, food and weather. I remember it all. Including the dress.
(Ironically my husband spent a decade doing wedding photography so I became very familiar with the industry. My only regret for my wedding is that we couldn’t photograph ourselves. )
I never believed that a dress should cost or be worth thousands of dollars- food, flowers and the experience meant more to me.

Dress shopping for the big day: mom and I went to one bridal boutique. The only thing I liked was a green bridesmaid dress- dirty looks from sales girl. Then they only bring in your size if you are going to buy it. Eff that.
Off to the “bridal” fabric store.

At this point feeling totally overwhelmed, mom grabbed the pattern book, flipped through said “this one” I said yes to the dress. Pattern was on sale for $10 or something. Now for fabric. Found the satin elsewhere on sale the invested $120 on the lace. I love the lace, and think about it often. Off to Parin’s where she proceeded to make another unique dress just for me.

So everything goes full circle. I’ll be celebrating my 15 year anniversary soon, just had my 20 year high school anniversary, and grade nine is pushing 25 years. Where does the time go? Who knew that a little girl born in India would come into my life via Uganda and Calgary, that my mom a little girl born on an a tiny island in the Atlantic Ocean would have a daughter writing about my beautiful dresses, on an IPhone in my old room the day before Mother’s Day!

Thank you mom! I love you. Happy Mother’s Day!!!

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What Goes On The Road…

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I started this blog as a tool for work. As a post secondary student recruiter, there are some tales that should stay on the road and some that absolutely need to be shared. It has since evolved into my own personal reflections on the world that surrounds us.
Hitch a ride with me, and hopefully have a laugh, chuckle, smirk or all out guffaw as we navigate uncharted seas of life, post secondary education and the average day of this educational ambassador!

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