Confession: I Was a Pint-Size Saloon Girl

Scrolling through Pinterest the other day, I ran across this image of an 1890s-style saloon gal costume:

 

 

After sharing it on Facebook, I suddenly remembered that I have a similar outfit in a box upstairs.

My saloon dress is a little small, though, seeing as I wore it in fourth grade. No, I wasn’t out hustling back in the day. It was for a role in a smalltown theatre‘s production. We were literally pioneers, the first crop of kids to enroll in the children’s theatre group.

Wanna see the dress? (Forgive the wrinkles as I am afraid to iron it.)

I can’t recall the name of the play, but it had the word “gulch” in the title. We served up sarsaparilla, and I had my own toy gun hidden under my skirt. (It was the early 80s, you know, and so there was a hefty dose of feminism buried in the plot line.)  I’ll try to dig up a photo from the show if I can ever get the guest room photo storage room back in working order.

My mother made that costume, by the way–she made almost all of my costumes, actually, until I bailed on my acting career. Which is why I have a box full of satin, lace and memories stashed in an erstwhile spare bedroom upstairs that we call the “fancy attic.” One thing that I don’t have in that box? My costume from Oklahoma! I was 17 and danced the dream sequence–again in a saloon-style costume–on the very same stage. (I do have the costumes from the role of Gertie Cummings, the gal with the obnoxious laugh who tries to woo Curly from Laurie and ends up with the peddler.)

Oh, and I’d be remiss if I didn’t share this final shot, one that many of you have seen before. It’s of Mom dressed up to go out to a costume party. Any surprise what she’s wearing?

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One comment

  1. I remember when you started children’s theatre……..Jean Campbell was ELATED to have you!!!   Pat – “Pittipat”

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