There’s a certain time of day referred to as “The Children’s Hour”, which is that moment just between the end of day and the start of night. It’s origin’s were in a poem by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, published in 1860, where just before sunset was described as “A pause in the day’s occupations.” Though the poem is essentially about a father and his children, there was always something so melancholy to me about it. As if we can stop time before darkness falls. As if we can spot our long gone innocence in that moment, before we have to go and be all grown up again.
I always found that to be a magical time of day in general – the world takes on a certain hazy sparkle, photos start to lose their crisp edges, and we can feel our bodies start to leave the long day of work behind. I was skyping with one of my closest friends recently about how it’s felt as though someone came along and grew us up without our permission. That we didn’t sign up for this whole adulthood thing but blinked and there she was, tapping her feet impatiently and expecting us to be in charge.
I have definitely felt the whole pressure of being a grown up these past few weeks – responsibilities and To Do lists and the consideration of big life changes. Maybe that’s why I’ve found myself subconsciously awaiting that presupposed pause in the day’s occupations – quickly casting my eyes up from my office computer and remembering a quieter time when my biggest woes involved how to steal my sister’s Barbie and testing out my latest strategy for prolonging an inevitable daily nap time. Ohhh if only I knew how much I would one day wish fiercely for those naps!
Between the dark and the daylight,
When the light is beginning to lower,
Comes a pause in the day’s occupations,
That is known as the Children’s Hour.
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
I guess one of the perks of being a grownup (in addition to no bedtime and getting to eat cereal for dinner if I so choose), is being able to indulge in my obsessions. I have to admit, I have more than a small obsession with border prints. If you’ve never heard the term ‘border print’ it refers to a fabric where the print is generally along one lengthwise edge (parallel to the selvage). A lot of vintage dresses will have a border print along the bottom edge of the skirt, but I’ve seen really interesting ones where it’s concentrated at the waist area or incorporated beautifully in a unique way on the bodice.
Needless to say, this dress spoke to me immediately. I love the print placement on the skirt and the way the border prints cascades down from my shoulders, draping me in florals. I particularly loved the yellow piping and the criss-cross back, design features that someone once upon a time used to labor over.
Speaking of labor, we’re now officially in Week 2 of our intensive course. Halfway there people! The students are so enthusiastic that even the mountains of work that it takes to successfully run a course like this is worth it. And though I still look forward to end of each day, when I can take a deep breath and regroup (and, let’s be honest, enjoy well-earned adult beverage), perhaps the rewards outweigh the costs.
So I suppose, taking the good with the bad, the responsibilities with the freedom, maybe I’ll get used to this whole grown up thing after all.
And hey, who’s to say we can’t all stay a child at heart?
Dress: Vintage via Konadlicious (similar modern or vintage here, here & here)
Belt: Anthropologie (similar)
Necklace: gift, Swarovski (similar here)
Handbag: Off Broadway Vintage (similar here & here)
Shoes: Steve Madden (similar here & here)
Lip color: Retrofuturist