The Easter Bonnet: Proof of Our Extreme Sense of Fashion

April 1, 2010

“In your Easter bonnet, with all the frills upon it,
You’ll be the grandest lady in the Easter parade.”
— Irving Berlin

The title and verse are somewhat tongue-in-cheek because I have no fashion sense whatsoever. But my mother and my grandmother did, and they brought it out in full bloom at Easter.

This is a fashion fête in memory of them—four years (out of many, I’m sure) of delightful Easter bonnet adornment.

1959

My grandparents, George and Ruth Larson, with my sister Terri. Note the jaunty feather in Ruth’s hat (not to mention those cool glasses).

1959

My mother Carol (George and Ruth’s daughter) and my sister, Terri. There’s Terri, standing all cute and coy with her trendy sailer cap and purse. Little does she know her idyllic, only-child world is soon coming to an end.

1960

Obviously, hat fashionistas go back many generations in our family. Eyeglassware, as well. Here is my great-grandmother (Ruth’s mother), Emma (Hornburg) Hooge Arndt.

Note the lace doily in the background. Certainly it was crocheted by someone in our family.

1961

Here’s Ruth with her grandchildren; David (my brother), Diahann (me, without the hat—by now my mother has probably sensed I’m going to be a fashion-challenged child) and Terri.

I think I’m about to burst forth with a smart comment about my grandmother’s, well, “unique” hat.

1962

Can you find a truer picture of late 1950s-early 60s Americana than this? I think not. Note the classic ranch homes set in a perfectly aligned subdivision. Today they’re back in architectural vogue and we call them “Atomic Ranches.”

Speaking of en vogue, here is my mother Carol with her Jacqueline Kennedy Pillbox hat. And isn’t Dave adorable with his double-breasted peacoat and cap? While he wasn’t able to escape my mother’s stylish standards, he certainly got off easier than Terri and I. That pretty dress poking through my coat was bouffanted by a scratchy, starchy underslip.

1962

Just wanted to give you the full affect (no, that’s not wind billowing those dresses). And check out our purses. There’s a story to them…stay tuned in the months ahead.

1966

Here we are, four years later; Dave, Cheryl, Diahann and Terri. And no Easter hats. Possibly sans sombrero is now the fashion, but most likely the chaos of getting four children ready for Easter Sunday necessitated simplicity.

Happy Easter everyone! May you have a blessed day as you celebrate our Savior’s love and resurrection.

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6 Responses to “The Easter Bonnet: Proof of Our Extreme Sense of Fashion”

  1. Ann Says:

    Great post! I love all the mary janes!

  2. Di Says:

    Ah yes…patent leather, of course. When they got to looking dull we buffed them with Vaseline for a glossy finish.

  3. Terri Says:

    The sailor suit picture…the purse was RED. Funny the things one remembers!

  4. Bethany Says:

    Wow – Great Grandma looks really chic in those photos! So does Grandma. I think my sister Ruth inherited more than just the name. I’m pretty sure I have more of those “fashion-challenged” genes. Who do those come from??

  5. Jessica Parker Says:

    hi my Name is Jessica Parker My Granmother is Leona Claire Larson Her Dad was Edward Gustaf Lason. I think that we are family cause george and ruth are my third great uncle and aunt. is there anyway that you could help me with some family history, Please.. my email is claire248558@yahoo.com

    Thank You,
    Jessica.

  6. adunate Says:

    Hi Jessica! So nice to meet you! Are you on Ancestry.com? If so, let’s connect. I have lots of information there. My username is owossomi.


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