Hammertime: Today’s fashion trends may not suit the weather

Dress for the weather and stay warm, in this week’s Hammertime

Mike Rainone


Call me old fashioned if you wish, but I really can’t quite keep up with all the new wild and glitzy fashions and dress-up habits that are now taking us at an over-whelming pace into the 20th century.

Even though like so many of the rest of our ‘senior fraternity’ we may be staunchly set in our ways and following along with a lot of age old habits and life-styles, today we all have a unique and exciting opportunity of sitting back and watching a vast array of colourful, flashy, and occasionally off the wall displays of all season head-to-toe apparel strutting about and complimenting all occasions, ages, and walks of everyday life.

Through all four of our favourite seasons it is a real treat to see all of our vibrant generations changing their day to day clothing patterns from parkas, hoodies, and ski-suits to T-shirts, shorts, flip-flops, and everything else in between that suits the favour and fancy of young and old in the newest fashion trends of today’s fast paced world. But along the way what a vast contrast we can witness in this present and amazing fashion craze, that overnight can go from one extreme to another. Before leaving for my regular trip to Ponoka last week I noticed that the wind was blowing and the early November temperature was hovering around minus 10 so delicate old me decided to dig out my long johns and heavy coat for the day. Just before entering the Fort Ostell Museum I noticed a young lady across the street walking with her boyfriend, he without a coat and her actually wearing shorts, and while I wasn’t really looking at her legs, I believe that they were blue. It only goes to show that our current vibrant younger generations from teens and on to adults are both bold and brave, and will do what it takes to look and be their best.

I guess you might say that yours truly was born in another era, trying to keep up and grow up in the great little Town of Ponoka through the roaring 1950s, ’60s, ’70s and way beyond. When we first arrived from jolly old England my youthful wardrobe consisted of short trousers, oxfords, socks up to my knees, a white shirt and tie, and a grey cardigan with long sleeves. That, however would change very quickly when we found out what a good old Alberta winter was all about, and then my parents had to stuff me into a pair of really big boots and wrap me up in several layers of clothing. Then I had a good chance of surviving when I ventured outside to go to school or church or play in temperatures that left big icicles hanging from our first little shack in Riverside. But thank goodness that when spring finally arrived me and my new friends got to dress down into some ‘skimpy wear’ that allowed us to play in the dirt and get wet and tanned. Here are just a few of the memorable highlights of our ‘fashion flings and fun stuff’ from those good old days, where colour and frills were not an option and we wore what we could afford. Along the way we somehow always managed to be a part of whatever crowd we chose to hang out with by just being true friends and getting the best by sharing what we had with everyone else, and never too much ‘peer pressure’

• For those born and raised more than a half century ago I guess we were a part of what was called ‘The Swinging decade’. Among the hottest fashions and styles were: hot pants, vintage chick, the hippy look, bobby socks, pony tails, brush cuts, white bucks, as well as what might have been the ‘in thing’ for the high school guys and gals, along with the newest and flashiest flairs and fantasies for family and fun-loving adults and saucy seniors.

• I notice nowadays that slits in the slacks are really in swing. When I was growing up and we got a hole in our pants or clothes our mothers would patch them up to make them last longer. Mom’s sewing box and skills were always the ‘quick fix’ to patch up the knees, elbows, or backside, on which we were always sliding. The cardinal rule around most happy households was two basic outfits and sets of shoes for each child, one for playtime, chores, and rough stuff, and the best one for church, school, company, and special occasions, and stayed in the closet unless authorized. Cold weather wear also included long-johns and hats with flaps and ear-muffs, but we didn’t dare wipe out runny nosed on our best scarf or gloves.

• Who knows what happens nowadays, but back then when we became teens and the tester one starting kicking in, both lads and lassies would possess a set of sassy duds to impress our dates, as well as well as sprucing up with slicked back hair and a dash of dad’s Old Spice or mom’s perfume.

Whatever the case, then or now, please dress to suit the weather, look your best, and then have a great fun week, all of you.

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