Tuesday, April 21, 2009

My Concrete Prairie

Living in Down Town Atlanta has a million things that I love about it, but after awhile, one begins to feel a little cooped up. Warm weather and feeling the sun on your skin is nice, but I'm sure any ATLien is familiar with the change that takes place in Down Town this time of year-- the scent of urine being baked on pavement wafting up to your nostrils, the congestion of tourists looking at Frauda handbags, the unfamiliar new homeless people attracted by said tourists and mistaking you for one of them, the extra crowded MARTA train rides... It's enough to make me pine for a simpler life, to fantasize about being the only human for miles with only the fresh smelling good for me countryside to walk in and the sounds of water or insects to lull me to sleep instead of sirens and the familiar cry of the lone crack head in the night. In short, sometimes I start to wish I were in these places and wearing these outfits:

The ladies in these photos are Sasha and Amber, the masterminds behind Violet Folklore, whose whimsical scenery (and dresses via etsy!) I look at and sigh with longing for on a regular basis. I am all revved up for a few countrified dresses this summer, and these ladies and their gorgeous blog are pretty much single-handedly responsible for my newfound appreciation of a Little House on the Prairie look. Not that I think churning butter, losing half my family to influenza, and having a life expectancy of about 50 years would be so wonderful, but I do think the dresses that harken to this particular rural past are quite wonderful, not to mention a much needed break from the here and now!

While I do love the silhouette of mini and micro-mini dresses and skirts and DO plan on rocking those quite a bit these coming months, I admire the way Amber and Sasha are not afraid of a long hem. Usually I tend to write off long cuts on garments as matronly or frumpy, but the Violet Folklore gals look anything but! The photographs themselves are beautiful (not to mention the subjects!), and they seem so calm and effortless in their Gunne Sax pieces above that it has caused me to reexamine one of my own dresses of the same brand (although I'll admit here that I ignorantly had no idea who or what Gunne Sax was or that I already owned a lovely Gunne Sax vintage dress myself until I became a fan of Amber and Sasha's photos on flickr and their blog). 

I acquired the dress several years ago when I was still going through my teenage hippy-ish stage and was all about the 70's, and since then have only worn it in a costume-y manner. But the end of semester crunch has left me with the need to channel some of the calmness and effortlessness I perceive in Violet Folklore's style, and since I can't escape the concrete jungle I'll just turn it into my paved prairie!

So here is my Violet Folklore inspired outfit featuring my own Gunne Sax dress. 

Aaah, the fresh smell car exhaust and the lulling hum of helicopters lowering suffering people onto the roof of Grady Memorial Hospital! Nothing like it.

Dress: Vintage 1970's Gunne Sax. I got it at a little thrift-y type shop in Greensboro, N.C. for next to nothing!
Bow: Baby section at Target.
Argyle Socks: Hand me downs.
Boots: DSW-- rarely do I buy a new pair of shoes, but I bought these pirate boots last winter at DSW and they are crap and haven't lasted me half as long as any of my vintage or thrifted shoes! They developed a big crack across the sole so I can't wear them when it rains.
Skinny jeans: An old pair of Dollhouse brand jeans I have had for a long time, altered into skinnies.

If you're a fellow city girl and need a break from the sky scrapers and pan-handlers, visit Violet Folklore's etsy shop. It's the next best thing to hopping in your car and driving to the outskirts of town, only you don't have to use up any gas or abandon your best friend the internet... AND you might come away with a new dress, so really it's a win-win.
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