When I was a little girl of 8 years, I started to mend holes in clothes. Fast forward to a Bachelors Degree in Ethnic Clothing, Textiles and their Retailing from Michigan State University, College of Human Ecology. The program was taught from the perspective of ecosystems. That is inner-connectedness of materials and their uses to humans.
After graduation, I lived and learned all I could in California. I mentored to a brilliant dressmaker, Lina Morgan and thanks to my art teacher, Ray Jacobs at the Laguna Beach Academy of Art also gained a total change of perspective, seeing life in terms of color and design, multi-optional. With these tools, I enjoy 38 years of working full-time as a creative professional dressmaker.
With your permission, may we discuss the issue of white wedding dresses representing purity of a woman’s sexuality. Aside from the sociological the political and the chauvinistic issues, mine is from a dressmakers perspective.
I love satin and laces and good workmanship especially in wedding dresses. Not too long ago young women started to trash their dresses after the wedding trying to “make right” the fact that they were not virgins at the time of their wedding. I heard and saw videos of young women applying paint, scissors and sometimes even laying down in a river to destroy the dress and its whiteness.
Not all of them, but, many traditions have great cultural value. I believe this one is worth keeping. I suggest we keep the notion of purity and we keep the white dress by assigning a purity of INTENTION to our commitment to stay married. To stay true to our partner and the vows we speak out loud. Have the whiteness of the dress represent the clear lily whiteness of our intention of staying together though thick and thin.
To me, this tradition needs an update, similar to an upgrade. Let me know if you agree or disagree. This upgrade seems more in line with our world today as we women get more free from male dominancy by taking your “should” . . . off of our bodies.