I like to take on the thing I don't like at the moment. I like to find something that looks wrong or feels off, something that I would never have done in the past, like brocade. And then all of a sudden, if we can make brocade work, then we've really done something, because I hate it. And that's just a reference. I don't actually hate brocade.
The key to looking great in the evening is to look original. Try to look different from others without looking out of place. When everyone else is wearing black, stand out in a bold, bright color. When everyone else is wearing dress that falls to the floor, shock them with a short gold brocade suit. But try not to overdo it. Focus on one thing: Will it be a statement neckclace, a stunning pair of earrings, or really big hair? You decide.
In the early forties and fifties almost everybody "had about enough to live on," and young ladies dressed well on a hundred dollars a year. The daughters of the richest man in Boston were dressed with scrupulous plainness, and the wife and mother owned one brocade, which did service for several years. Display was considered vulgar. Now, alas! only Queen Victoria dares to go shabby.
M. E. W. Sherwood
The piece I most love wearing is Mother's gold brocade cocktail dress with matching jacket... It's 'flip and flirty,' as my mother prescribed. It's crisp yet splendid. It makes me feel I've put on made-to-order armor. My mother's armor. Armor that helped shield me from exclusion. Armor that helped shield me from inferiority.
A quilt circle's like a crazy quilt. You got all kinds in it. Some members are the big pieces of velvet or brocade, show-offish, while others are bitty scraps of used goods, hoping you don't notice them. But without each and every one, the quilt would fall apart. There's big and small, old and new, fancy and plain in a quilt circle. Some you like better than the others. We have our differences, and Monalisa is a trial, but it's a surprise how we all come together over the quilt frame, even Monalisa. We're as thick as a lettuce bed.
THE BLUE DRESS Her blue dress is a silk train is a river is water seeps into the cobblestone steps of my sleep, is still raining is monsoon brocade, is winter stars stitched into puddles is goodbye in a flooded, antique room, is goodbye in a room of crystal bowls and crystal cups, is the ring-ting-ring of water dripping from the mouths of crystal bowls and crystal cups, is the Mississippi river is a hallway, is leaks like tears from windowsills of a drowned house, is windows open to waterfalls is a bed is a small boat is a ship, is a currant come to carry me in its arms through the streets, is me floating in her dress through the streets is the moon sees me floating through the streets, is me in a blue dress out to sea, is my mother is a moon out to sea.
Please don't misunderstand me. I'm not saying motherhood lacks meaning. There's great dignity in the smallness of motherhood; we're essential in our contingency. And though we may not follow the Western model of the epic hero, we mothers can find a metaphor for our lives. The metaphor is in the kuroko, the Kabuki theater stage assistant. You've heard of Kabuki-with its wildly theatrical actors, its gorgeous costumes, and spectacular scale. The kuroko are assistants who help the actors move through their elaborate dramas. Meant to provide unobtrusive assistance with props and costumes, kuroko try to remain in the wings. They huddle in half-kneeling posture, wearing black bags over their heads and bodies-the better to recede into both actors' and audience's preconscious mind. Scurrying to arrange the trailing hems of heavy brocade kimonos, like an American mother repeatedly straightening her daughter's wedding train, the kuroko's role is to suport the real players of life's dramas.
Aubade I work all day, and get half-drunk at night. Waking at four to soundless dark, I stare. In time the curtain-edges will grow light. Till then I see what's really always there: Unresting death, a whole day nearer now, Making all thought impossible but how And where and when I shall myself die. Arid interrogation: yet the dread Of dying, and being dead, Flashes afresh to hold and horrify. The mind blanks at the glare. Not in remorse -The good not done, the love not given, time Torn off unused-nor wretchedly because An only life can take so long to climb Clear of its wrong beginnings, and may never; But at the total emptiness for ever, The sure extinction that we travel to And shall be lost in always. Not to be here, Not to be anywhere, And soon; nothing more terrible, nothing more true. This is a special way of being afraid No trick dispels. Religion used to try, That vast moth-eaten musical brocade Created to pretend we never die, And specious stuff that says No rational being Can fear a thing it will not feel, not seeing That this is what we fear-no sight, no sound, No touch or taste or smell, nothing to think with, Nothing to love or link with, The anaesthetic from which none come round. And so it stays just on the edge of vision, A small unfocused blur, a standing chill That slows each impulse down to indecision. Most things may never happen: this one will, And realisation of it rages out In furnace-fear when we are caught without People or drink. Courage is no good: It means not scaring others. Being brave Lets no one off the grave. Death is no different whined at than withstood. Slowly light strengthens, and the room takes shape. It stands plain as a wardrobe, what we know, Have always known, know that we can't escape, Yet can't accept. One side will have to go. Meanwhile telephones crouch, getting ready to ring In locked-up offices, and all the uncaring Intricate rented world begins to rouse. The sky is white as clay, with no sun. Work has to be done. Postmen like doctors go from house to house.