The Personal History Of A Dress

I was pondering the history of this dress the other day as I wore it. Surprisingly it is not my favorite dress and I don't wear it often, and yet some of my favorite memories have taken place while I wore it.
We had a rocky beginning (this dress and I), despite our meeting in the lovely Japan. I bought it mid-text message feud with friends while I shopped alone in downtown Sapporo. The friends were supposed to meet me, but had not come and had decided to text me instead to meet them on the other side of the city. They added that we might go back across town in a couple hours, but they weren't certain. I didn't want to pay double the subway fare for indefinite plans, but ultimately I decided seeing my friends face to face was better than arguing with them through a phone. Much of our nonverbal dialogue took place while I was in the dressing room at Thank You Mart. I also judged that if I could fork over the cash for a subway ride I didn't want to take, I could afford an adorable vintage dress with a peter pan collar for 360 yen (around $3) that I did want.
Its next outing was much more auspicious. I wore it after an amazing yukata party another host student held. Stuffed full with amazing food and still relieved I had not been burned by the various fireworks we had set off, I slipped out of my borrowed iris print yukata and into this dress; pairing it with my gold flats and vintage leather belt. In a subway locker downtown a friend and I stored our yukatas before trotting off to a Rockabilly club. Around 3:00 am with legs and feet aching from nonstop dancing we ambled to an all-night ramen shop with some of the djs from the club. After eating our fill and being gifted with dozens of free Rockabilly cds, we wandered to Odori park to sit on a bench and watched the sun rise while recounting and reliving the glory of the night. When the first subways of the day started up again at 6:00am I finally went home to my host family and sleep.
The dress has been worn often since then, but lately had taken up residence in the dark recesses of my closet. So, when I saw it recently I thought it deserved another outing and while the events of this particular day can not compare to the memories it already carries, some days are best spent remembering wonderful events and complex people. Further, when I ponder how much this dress has endured with me I can not help but wonder what adventures did it indulge in before I was even in the picture...

Outfit details: jacket- H&M, dress- vintage, vest- H&M, bag- Pull and Bear, shoes- Urban Outfitters, ring- gift from my sister

CONVERSATION

91 comments:

  1. Awww, that was a cute story! I mean, not the part where you argued with your friends, but the day still worked out in the end :) What a great dress - I can't believe it was only $3!

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  2. love the outfit! i can't believe you got it for $3! i wish i could find something awesome in such a price.

    great story and i also love your ring!

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  3. Love the vest over dress look. You make it work! Thanks for sharing your memories with us!

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  4. Awesome, loved it! Cute story and such a beautiful dress!
    xoxo

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  5. What a great story. I love hearing about your escapades in Japan. Late night Ramen shops sound fantastic!

    The dress is so lovely. It was definitely worth way more than the $3!

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  6. it's amazing, isn't it? how a piece of garment, a smell of perfume, or a melody of a song can bring past memories back to life.

    by the way, thanks for stopping by my blog and comment. keep up your amazing blog!

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  7. Great stories! I love that clothes carry memories. This plays a huge part in my life, so much so that sometimes I won't wear something on an important day if I've had a bad day in it before!

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  8. Love the brown accessories to complement the browns in the dress (and your hair)! I also loved reading about your history with the dress :D

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  9. meh, I wish there were dresses for $3 in england. It's also really cool that it has so many memories - it's one of the nicest things about clothes, that you can remember when special things happened in them. It's like they live through your life experiences with you. or is that just too weird?? xx

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  10. That is a great find for $3. I love it when I can remember a day so vividly, including exactly what I wore!

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  11. what a lovely dress and the story is great. clothes can have such a wonderful personal history

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  12. That is such a good story! I loved reading it. The dress looks really amazing with your hair color too!

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  13. That's what I love about fashion--clothes aren't just clothes. They come with a history, ranging from where they were found to what was done while wearing it. Your dress looks great.

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  14. Pretty photos... I still love that shell ring :)

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  15. I love stories like this. Thanks!

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  16. Loved reading the story behind the dress - it made it so much more personal. And the print on it is gorgeous, as are the photos!

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  17. Oh! It's so pretty! I love that you've teamed it with the little vest - very cute! What a lovely story - thank you for sharing!

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  18. I think it would probably make it so hard to let go of in the future wouldn't it?

    By the way, I've got an awesome pair of Current/Elliott jeans to give away at my blog! Come check them out :)

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  19. You went to japan! OMG to envy! Japan is one of my favoutite countries.
    I love when clothes has history. When clothes is more than just a piece of fabric.
    thanks for visit blog!

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  20. Lovely outfit! What a great story to go behind it as well. I hope one day when I go to Japan I will find some great dresses!

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  21. It looks great with the little vest. I like when clothes have stories.

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  22. Aw, what a special memory this dress has the privilege to hold. The night you described sounds amazing. How nice that the memory not only lives on in your mind, but also in the dress where you can literally step back into it.

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  23. Beautiful dress and vest! Your pictures are always a pleasure to look at! xoxoxooxo

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  24. that's a gorgeous dress - and even more so because of the stories attached to it. And it was $3? Bargain!

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  25. I was just thinking about the history of one of my old dresses a couple days ago. It always surprises me how much comes flooding back to me just by holding a garment in my hand. Not repressed memories or anything, but you know.

    The story of its 2nd outing sounds epic!

    I love the print of the dress and how it looks with the vest.

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  26. that is such a cute story.
    love it.
    xx

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  27. It's a lovely dress dear CH, but even lovelier is it's history. Thank you so much for sharing, it sounds like a very important time.

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  28. I love it when things have a bit of history behind them or an interesting story... it makes so much more special =]. The dress and photos are beautiful. =].

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  29. Oh I love stories like this! Vintage clothing always makes me think- like what kind of person wore it before me and so on..

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  30. this one is very sweet :D:D:D my goddd

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  31. i love ur bag and ur dress! very cute...

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  32. Such lovely photos. I really like the vintage dress. And those shoes are so cute.

    www.inkmyfashion.blogspot.com

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  33. I love the print of your dress, and the shell ring is beautiful. What amazing memories to go with the dress. I end up remembering the strangest things when I put on a piece I had forgotten about, it's so lovely how they can bring back those memories.

    Oh and I have only read a little Jack London, but I loved The Call of the Wild and Iron Heel. I tried to cut down my list to be honest, there were books beyond books waiting for a feature. Hope you are having a beautiful weekend dear.

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  34. you have got such pretty collection of dresses!

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  35. That was such a nice post - its nice to hear the history and stories and memories of clothes. Just yesterday I was going through my overstuffed wardrobe and my friend was trying to persuade me to get rid of some outdated clothes I don't wear anymore but I'm reluctant because I associate them with a particular time and events in my life. And I'm trying to convince myself that i will wear them again...someday!

    The dress is really cute - well worth the $3!

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  36. I love it when people can recall all times spent while wearing a specific garment. I must be memory challenged or maybe I wear some clothes way to often to be able to remember everything I did while wearing them. Anyway, it's amazing!

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  37. I love these pictures, especially the first one. Nice dress!

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  38. Every time I think of a certain memory, I'll definitely remember the outfit I had on...thanks for sharing your stories:)

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  39. Love the pictures, looks like they're from Dawson's Creek!! Last Friday I was wearing a dress and suddenly I realized I was wearing the same dress exactly one year before too...so now I decided that's the "July 10th dress"!

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  40. That dress is adorable - and what an interesting history! I attach memories to most of my clothes as well.

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  41. welll the dress looks absolutely fantastic . ilove the colors. are they purlple and green.
    you are a pretty interesting person . i wouldn't think you be into rockabilly.


    hope your weekend is going good darling

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  42. welll the dress looks absolutely fantastic . ilove the colors. are they purlple and green.
    you are a pretty interesting person . i wouldn't think you be into rockabilly.


    hope your weekend is going good darling

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  43. woww.. rough beginning, sweet ending! the fact you found it in japan makes me want to go there! LOL.. sorry about the feud, though.. :(

    xx

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  44. i am in LOVE with your seashell ring.

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  45. It sounds like you've given that dress some memories. Don't you sometimes wish your clothes could talk?

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  46. Great post. It's nice to reflect on a piece of clothing and remember the memories you have created with it.

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  47. Well I must say I love your clothes, your photos, your sea-inspired jewelry, and your blog!

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  48. beautiful post, i always get vintage dresses on ebay from america and it's funny to wonder who and why someone bought it and now it's been sent across the world. i've tried to figure out too if some of my dresses are lucky or the commonalities of items you wear and wear over and over but i can't find any- usually though it's things like your story were you buy something in a special place on a whim!

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  49. i love pieces of clothing that bring back memories. i have some dresses that i look back on and it brings back such happy times or sad. but either way. great post

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  50. It's so inspiring how you not only have a way with pairing clothing items, but also how you have a way with words. The story was lovely as well as are you.

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  51. $3 really?!! That's amazing!! And I love the idea here, the history behind clothes and outfits is what really makes fashion so amazing.

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  52. That's such a great story. Makes me want to go to Japan. All night ramen shops? Yes, please!

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  53. I really like that dress! And I love the story, too! Isn't it great how we can form personal relationships with our clothes?? Marvelous!
    Cheers,
    Clare

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  54. Love this post because to me, clothes tell a story...

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  55. A lovely dress with a great story: the best clothes always hold personal memories rich with feelings, whether they are good or bad they are special because of the very personal, private relationship between only the garment and the wearer.
    Thankyou for sharing yours :)

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  56. I love how the dress echoes the colors and shapes of the landscape, so maybe the dress and you belong here all along. (I can't say; it just sounds good!)

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  57. Beautiful narration. I love the last bit about wondering what it endured before you were even in the picture. Really interesting to read.

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  58. I've nominated you for a blog award. Go check it out at: http://ceceliabedelia.blogspot.com/2009/07/blog-award-and-paying-it-forward.html. Great blogging!

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  59. An entirely gorgeous post which encapsulates perfectly why I have a wardrobe full of practically-unworn clothes which I'm not willing to part with because of the things that happened when i was wearing them!

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  60. You look stunning, as always. I love your ring!

    Also, I'm loving the new blog layout. Very sophisticated.

    x

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  61. Lovely dress and cute story... also the location is quite breath taking!!

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  62. Yeah, finding studs are hard, I wonder where people get them from. I really want some spiky ones, but I have no idea where to even look for them :(

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  63. This is such a cute story. How much time did you spend in Japan?

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  64. I love items with a storied past. That's why I love vintage.

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  65. i love the print of the dress- its incredibly pretty!
    ive never been to sapporo but ive heard its beautiful there- im going back to japan in about 10 days for the summer, your post made me all the more excited!

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  66. Those pictures are lovely!

    Thanks for letting me use your Party Post idea! I used it a few days ago and it went down really well! :)

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  67. You wear the dress really well! :) I like the history of the dress! haha

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  68. Wonderful :) Thanks for sharing this!

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  69. one of the reasons why i love the vintage community so much is reading about a beautiful dress going from one lady to another and the seller gushing over how the new owner wears it so much better. never fails to bring a smile to my face. it's a good thought, this one of yours, of how many adventures your dress has gone through before it got to you.

    i wonder if clothes experience even more than a person would in their 'lifespan'...

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  70. What a great story. I love this!

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  71. that's the magical thing about clothes. sometimes they hold more memories than even a old photo could.
    -Runway2Hallway.com

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  72. A lovely tale, thanks for sharing!!

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  73. This is such a beautiful outfit! I love the lake in the background. All of your outfit posts are set in such beautiful places. What a magical world you live in! :)

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  74. Adorable outfit. I believe this is what draws me to vintage clothing, the curiosity behind it, makes for a much more interesting outfit!

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  75. Wow I love that dress it's so pretty - such sweet little pockets and that waistcoat looks darling. You're a cutie

    Polly x

    Polly Farthing Vintage Blog

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  76. Oh, the magic of clothes... They make us remember memorable times in our lives...
    It's so good you decided to purchase it anyway, because it's a lovely dress!
    Looking as adorable as you are with it in the pics, I'm sure it will bring you lots of beautiful memories in the future! :-)

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  77. wow, its one cute vintage dress. Love the color and the way it is made. It's so chic and classy.

    I think Ralph Lauren also has some fabulous design just like that dress.

    Just check out this site.

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  78. sweet story! and as always, your pic settings are just so magical

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  79. you have a great memory. I don't remember this dress so much, but I really like it and for $3 can't be beat.

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  80. What a sweet story! Clothes can be very nostalgic to me (some of my favorites are things my mom wore when she was my age, or when I was a baby, which I now wear) but people often think that it is ridiculous to have an emotional connection to something as silly as clothing. I think they're silly. I cherish clothes that remind me of good times and good people.

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  81. What a sweet little adventure dress. My favorite aspect of vintage clothing is pondering the previous owners. In a silly way, I really feel excited and connected to the past when I wear something old!

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  82. Wherever you are, its gorgeous...

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  83. I love this post - the photos are great, but I most enjoyed your fabulous story to go with it.

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  84. Cute story and pictures! You may want to consider submitting that to an memoir writing contest on memoirsink.com/contests. There are even prizes for the winners!

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