When I was a kid I had a fabulous collection of “vintage” (read: used) prom and bridesmaid dresses from the 50s and 60s. They were never for wearing out of the house, they were for playing dress-up (that is a direct quote from my mom). Some dresses my grandmother bought at yard sales. Some were found in my closet from my mom’s and aunts’ proms and weddings. Some were donated by friends of my mother. Some just appeared, and we honestly don’t know where they came from.
Several of my growing-up friends have commented to me how much fun it was to play with those dresses. We would tear apart my closet (a walk-in big enough to have a window – it was like a clubhouse) trying on dresses and hats and shoes in every combination. Looking back, it seems like we played for hours and hours and hours upon end. My mom might remember those days a bit differently…
When we cleaned out my parent’s house last year I finally parted with what was left of the dress-up dresses. Most were torn in places, and rather limp. I still don’t think we threw any away. They went to the girl across the street, who was not even born when I left for college. Some of the hats did hit the trash can, there was just no saving them.
When I came across this photo from Tim Walker that closet of dresses came flooding back to me.
This image is called “The Dress/Lamp Tree” Northumberland, England 2002.
These are almost the exact dresses I used to play with. The same colors (that violet!) the same shapes, the same dresses. It is uncanny.
See more amazingness from Tim Walker on his website; his work transcends fashion photography and must simply be called art.