By Rick Banas of BMA Management, Ltd.
Oh, how the residents of Heritage Woods of Moline enjoyed the “Remember When Fashion Show.” The smiles, the laughs, the applause, the hooting and hollering.
The Director of Maintenance coolly playing a Greaser,
The Administrator dressed as June Cleaver, offering up freshly baked cookies.
These are just a few of the highlights of the show, which was part of the community’s celebration of Supportive Living Week 2012.
Sponsored by the Affordable Assisted Living Coalition, Supportive Living Week is designed to bring attention to the Illinois Supportive Living program. The program provides a cost-effective solution to older adults and adults with physical disabilities who can benefit from an affordable residential style of living with the availability of personal assistance and support services.
Residents of Supportive Living communities such as Heritage Woods of Moline also benefit from the opportunity to socialize and enjoy programs such as the “Remember When Fashion Show.”
Staff members did the research and tracked down examples of what was worn. They shared the information and modeled the fashions to the delight of residents.
Fabrics became lighter, colors were brighter and styles were looser. Lowered necklines became popular, and sales of cold cream and lemon extract escalated. The Tea Gown was worn at home, and the sack, sheath oriental costumes, harem trousers and the Hellenic tunic were all introduced. Head gear was worn and was very costumary.
When World War 1 – the first war to end all wars – began, fashion design came to a standstill and “Made in America” was in style.
Also during the decade, new materials and technologies made colors more available. The suffragettes focused on more comfortable fashion, with lots of pockets. And, hemlines began to inch up – to show the ankles.
Marked by its tight fit and knee-high length, the Flapper Dress was emblematic of the entire Jazz Age. A woman showing the skin of her legs in public would have been a case for scandal in prior decades, but in the 1920s society was changing and fashion changed along with it.
The narrow and straight style of the Flapper Dress gave women an adolescent look. The term Flapper, however, is open to debate. Some folks say that it was used to describe a young woman (bird) just learning to fly while others used the term to describe a woman of the night.
June Cleaver was a principal character in the sitcom Leave It to Beaver. June was very ladylike and slightly formal in appearance. She was notorious for consistently being dressed as a part hostess, even when doing her housework or relaxing around the house. She wore a pearl necklace in almost every scene, even when gardening.
The sitcom Happy Days featured Arthur Herbert Fonzarelli. The Fonz portrayed the Greaser, an iconic symbol of rebellion and pure coolness.
The Greaser sported a plain white cotton t-shirt and a pair of tight blue jeans. The shirt was never ducked in daddy-o. A leather jacket with the collar flipped up said “your crusin for a brusin” if you mess with this cat.
Having a comb in hand to slick back a heavily greased up head of hair was essential as was a bandanna to mop up any extra grease.
Smooth black shoes accented the rolled up pair of blue jeans, and a pair of black mirrored shades was the final accent to help convey the coolness of the Greaser.
In the early 1960s, women wore mini-skirts and leather boots and men wore Paisley shirts and velvet trousers.
In 1966, the age of the Hippie was born and Psychedelic clothes featuring bright colors for both men and women were introduced. Men started to wear their hair longer, and women identified with the Hippie look by wearing longer skirts and dresses known as Maxies. Anything and everything had color, including the body.
Women were wearing everything from ankle-length dresses to hot pants and micro-miniskirts while men were donning leisure suits.
Fashions also were impacted by Woody Allen’s movie “Annie Hall,” which was released in the spring of 1977. The clothing worn by Diane Keaton in the movie started a fashion trend of women wearing traditional men’s clothing. In particular, derby hats, tweed jackets, neckties, and baggy pants or skirts were the rage.
Aquanet hairspray helped women keep their ratted up big hair in place for days, and some men joined the big hair trend by sporting a Mullet.
MC Hammer brought us parachute pants, which seemed to come in any color or pattern one could dream up, and Madonna brought us the look of lace, black leather, long pearls and a big hair bow.
photo gallery, click here.
“BMA Management is the leading provider of affordable assisted living in Illinois
and one of the 20 largest providers of assisted living in the United States.”