How was your weekend? You can about guess how I spent mine-- shoppin', readin', hangin' with friends (added wild card: got really into season 2 of Hannibal...talk about RAMPED UP from season 1, thank you Kelsey for encouraging me to continue watching). I finished Big Bill Broonzy's memoirs and launched into silent film scribe/Mary Pickford intimate Frances Marion's autobiography, and am almost through that. I ordered new glasses (pics to come when they get in with their lenses). As for estate sales, we made it a SUPER family affair this weekend-- my mom joined in, and we had a ball! As usual, I bought the most stuff-- but the NEATEST thing I bought of the stuff I bought, was in Donelson at an estate sale that was almost all kind of eh 80's and 90's stuff....and an entire closet full of WWII and later uniforms. AAAH!
Naturally, with that kind of buy-bait, I bit, and look at my little guy in his circa 1945 splendor:
|Note: I am not actually eight feet tall, this photo was taken from the vantage point of|
an ottoman. Still, I love this angle, and feel a little like David Bailey.
Could you die?
I might have mentioned before, but for the record-- my dad is not your casual WWII enthusiast. In the same way as some people collect the odd record here and there, and then there are rabid, down-to-the-bone vinyl enthusiasts, my dad is probably the most knowledgeable Second World War enthusiast you will meet outside of a professional academic setting. Since childhood, he's inhaled every kind of militaria book, magazine, pamphlet he could get his hands on, and with the same diligence with which I apply myself to, oh, 1800's portraits or thirties' dresses. Dude knows his onions, if those onions are MacArthur's family background or Pacific theater air attacks. Accordingly, when I see estate sales with 1940's-era content, you'd better believe we make a beeline, hoping I can score big band sheet music and he might lay hands on a service medal or a copy of Yank magazine. We went to this one and I dragged him to the closet going, "LOOK! Look at all of this!" He agreed that the items from the forties' were all in tip top shape, but he's a 42L, and the sizes on the clothes were 34S. Guess who I know who's a 34S? My long-torso'd little husband! With pants and shirts at $5 apiece, and the jacket itself at $15, I was like...well, one of us is buying this ensemble, Pappy...and it turned out to be me.
We cherry picked the best shirt and pants out of the closet, and grabbed the officer's service jacket. While I was bummed it didn't have a matching belt, my dad mentioned a forties' looking leather belt could stand in pretty well in its stead. When Matthew put the jacket on, he went, "There's something in the pocket!" I was holding out for Krugerrands, or maybe at least a tie to complete the ensemble, when what should he produce from said pocket but the belt! YESSSS. There was an officer's hat, but it was $20, and a quarter inch too small for either of our heads. Maybe I'll find another!
What was so neat about seeing my guy in this uniform? Getting an idea of how little WWII era women lost their hearts to men in service uniform. Seriously? It's not like I don't already find my guy super attractive, but PLUS an army uniform? I love thinking about 18 year old farm kids or kids who had never had anything joining the Army and being given a suit of clothes better than what they'd wear to church on Sunday. How proud they must have felt in these Brooks Brothers esque uniforms, and oh my goodness how dashing when they went to town on leave from training and hung around the movie theater or the restaurants trying to pick up girls. If you were halfway cute, I bet you went from a score of 5 to a 15 out of 10 when you donned pinks and greens (as my dad just this weekend taught me the dark green service jacket and lighter green pants were called...this would be greens and like tans, haha). The pants need pressing, but look at how grown up and formal Matthew looks:
|I was going to try to edit out my skull necklace and Matthew's copy of Mario Kart, but it adds anachronistic |
ambiance, right? That and I can't figure out how to, lol.
Second thought-- when or where can you wear something like this outside of a costume ball or Halloween? The very last thing I would want to do is show some kind of disrespect to actual servicemen, but as this uniform hasn't been used by the US Army since 1955, it's not like anyone would mistake my thirtysomething husband for a) having worn it for real the first time around or b) being an active member of the military. I don't know! Being the daughter of someone really into army surplus, I definitely wore my share of olive drab in high school, but I'm not sure how this works on guys and in the 21st century. What I do know? Dude looks like this coat was made for him:
Anyway, I gotta shuffle off to Buffalo...but how about you? Do you know any WWII nuts? How are you fixed for vintage Army or other service uniforms? What kinds of collections run in your family? WHERE or when do you wear something like this without giving offense? Let's talk!
That's all for today, but I'll be back tomorrow with some more things I found out on the junk trail. Have a fabulous Monday! I'll see you then.