the medieval museologist

I got this rayon skirt set for my birthday back in May, and I gotta say – it’s practically magic.

True to its knight-and-princess print, this outfit makes me feel otherworldly in the best way. It’s part of my growing stable of “eccentric Deco dame” duds. I’ve said this many times before, but dressing three times mt age gives me a comfort and a confidence moving through the world. I have a high voice and a baby face, which ’50s pinup styles accentuate uncomfortably. Signaling “nutty rich grandma” may be overcompensating, but it lets me know I’m taken seriously. I did a double take the first time I got “ma’am”ed, but it’s way better than “when are you graduating from high school?”

(Yes, I got asked that. Last year. At the age of 22.)

Plus – I know it’s silly, that it’s flirting with the historical revisionism I castigate others for, but part of me loves imagining myself as a working woman in the ’30s. A lady in a smart suit was going places, literally and not. I feel just a little like Edith Crawley or Jenny Lee. I know it was harder than we acknowledge, and I know it’s often still an uphill battle – but, my god, how exciting.

And this suit in particular puts me in the working gal state of mind. As of last month, I’m officially enrolled in Northwestern University’s museum studies program. It’s three semesters of online classes plus a conference in Chicago next year, and I’m pretty over the moon about it. Working with material history, mining the stories of objects and letting them tell new ones – it’s what I live for, honestly. I can’t wait for the rest of my life to start.

My concentration is in living history and reproduction (quelle surprise), so I’ll be broadening my historical sewing repertoire over the next few months!

Suit: ’30s or ’40s, gifted

Hat: ’30s, The Vintage Hat Shop

Everything else: thrifted

Author: skye

I aspire to be a bright-eyed girl in a big city, even though I wear glasses and live in what amounts to a hole in the ground.

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