Sunday, 23 January 2011

When I was young !

Well I was once, honest ! I was also IN Fashion (once)with a black polo necked jumper a charcoal grey skirt, black stockings (see previous posts) under my mock crock shiney black boots ! ( yes Beatlemania ) I stayed up past my bedtime and listened to the music on the radio when mum and dad went out for the night on a weekend.  Radio Luxembourg and pirate radios operated off shore  on ships, can I remember the name ? no I can not ! I was looking after my brother and we were supposed to go to bed at the right time and many times I just made it bed before they came back ! Social workers would be on to us today but then everybody did it. Once you went to Secondary school you were old enough to babysit children and get paid.
I had Penpals in  USA, (Charlotte Zink) and in Canada, (Patsy Barry?) and a boy in Japan with initals KK, (I can say but not spell it !)  By the time I was interested in the goings on in Woodstock, Bob Dylan etc I was no longer in touch with Charlotte to get local knowledge. Charlotte would ask me to go over  for a holiday when I could barely scrape together the price of an areogramme to write to her!  (Are you out there I wonder and how have your lives panned out?)  **( I am now thinking that I got it wrong and that Patsy lived in Woodstock, Ontario but cannot remember where Charlotte lived in USA) I became interested in Arlo Guthrie and his songs, The Motorcycle Song and The Pause of Mr. Clause etc especially the live performances recordings when the audience erupted into noisy cheering when Arlo points out the officials keeping an eye on his concerts. Did FBI agents really monitor his concerts ? I don't know I wasn't there. Its hard to believe the whole Reds under the beds scenario now.
It was a time of much change. Or in the words of a Dylan song "the times they are a changing" or something like that.
Fathers had the right to stop your marriage if he didn't give consent at 18 yrs and you had to wait until you 21yrs to get married without his consent. In 1966 it changed to 16yrs and 18yrs. If you were unmarried you had to "Sleep In" in  nurses homes under the watchful eye of a Home Sister whilst you trained. At university there were single sex halls of residence and you did not entertain anyone in your room and were chaperoned with a male visitor in the common room. I did marry at 16 and shortly afterwards I needed an operation and the Drs insisted that my father countersigned my husbands signature.
To be an unmarried mother was dreadful, the end of your life almost, you would be shunted off to "an ill aunt" who needed looking after but really you would be sent to another town to a mother and baby home to have your baby and to return home without it. There you scrubbed floors right up to the time of your confinement. I know, there was one near where I lived and my family knew a midwife who worked there. It was always the girls "fault" never the mans. It was still law in 1968 that you could be "put away" in an institution for the rest of your life for the sake of "public morals" I worked in a female long term mental health establishment and was saddened to see the numbers of women whose only "problem" was being made pregnant out of wedlock as a teenager.
Now it would seem to be "normal" for underaged sex and rarely hear of anyone being prosecuted.  To live together and not marry  used to be "living in sin". Get divorced which used to be a "disgrace" and the female branded a scarlet woman. How times have changed. I think it was the Children Act that really gave women "rights" although burning the bra probably helped ! ? but have they gone too far?
All these ramblings just because I sold some records and they brought back all sorts of memories.

Home Taping is Killing Music and is Illegal

I found this on a dust sleeve of a record "Home Taping Is Killing Music And Is Illegal." I had forgotton that music was often taped onto cassette tapes which were easier and lighter to carry around from house to house and then in the car when we got players in them. Now we have tiny MP3 players or mobile telephones with the facility for music videos !!
We still have problems with music piracy all  these years on inspite of loads of free downloads available.!

golden oldies

Sold off the record collection from 1960s to 1980s (mine and  my late husbands) 78s LPs EPs and singles. Even had a 12" single !! Will give daughter the money towards a pair of diamond earings for her wedding day as her dad will not be there. Those of you who are too young to know (!) in the top picture are LPs....Long Players which played at thirty three and a third speed and had several tracks The next picture is of 78s which came before LPs.... with a couple of sleeves off singles (played at 45 rpm) all showing adverts for Sidney Scarbroughs record shop in Hull. You could go in and request to hear a record, go into a little sound proof booth and listen to it. I remember Stardisc and Regis Records two other record shops. I used to have a Dancette record player and still have a Fidelity PORTABLE record player. Portable in as much as a strong arm was needed to carry it to the house where we were gathering and another strong arm was needed to carry the pile of records. Other people would bring their selection as well. To take out on picnics we had a battery operated compact player and a little carrying box  for a selection of records.

Monday, 3 January 2011

Lyn and hosiery legs

My friend Lyn commented on the last post, and set me off tracking down display legs to photograph the stockings on. Messaged a contact at a big store to see if I could go into the window dressers storage area to photograph the stockings on their legs... (I used to have a shop dummy which I loaned to someone but they threw it out...) so need a leg......If the store is a no go......Which friend would be willing to model the stockings by laying down and sticking their leg in the air for me ??? Seeing as we are all over 60 it might be a bit Dear, the images in my head...)
So next I checked on eBay and found a see- through plastic display leg for £15...... when I had photographed the stockings on it....I could stuff it with the stockings...and photograph it....stuff it with other stuff..... Paint tattoos on it..... Do a Rolf Harris routine... Jake the fake with a wooden leg.... now I have descended into a farce with my mind running riot.... Off on one.....I could just see the comedienne Dawn French turning it into a sketch on TV....... with a manic but riotous female version of Rolfs..Jake and his wooden leg

Saturday, 1 January 2011

Talking of my mam....

My mum gave me some time ago a black home made draught excluder  of some considerable age, the cover was made of  WW2 blackout material. When I eventually needed to wash it, the cover fell apart and exposed these stockings. Fully fashioned stockings, with a seam up the back, when did they go out of fashion? late 50s early 60s ? Look at the repairs on them, the darning and re-darning to keep them wearable during the tail end of the Make Do and Mend era. Were they my mums stockings?
Fully fashioned stockings invoke the glamour of the old films, post WW2 fashions with the nip waisted full skirted dresses.
I must do something with these to recognise the resourcefulness of the women who made and mended to stay glamorous when times were hard.  Any suggestions as to what I could do with them ?
Also there were offcuts of rosebud material which I remember making dolls nighties with and some blue dress material.

When I was growing up my Mum made me wear stockings when my friends wore the new fangled tights. It was a case of modesty, yes, MODESTY ! If I wore stockings which needed suspenders to hold them up, I would be MORE conscious of of keeping my dress down modestly around my knees than I would if wearing tights. TIGHTS according to mum encouraged young girls to be amoral !!  MUM!!!