Wednesday, March 2, 2016

White Dress Shopping

School traditions, am I right?


Laurel Parade class of 1922
Every spring my college has a tradition for the graduating seniors called laurel parade which takes place right before graduation. Basically, we all carry a garland made of laurel leaves to the grave of the college's founder and then sing the alma mater. We are joined by classes returning to their campus for their reunions and watched by our family and friends who have come to see us graduate

It's a very cool tradition stretching back to the early 1900's and traditions like this are one of the reasons I love my college so much. It's amazing to be doing archival research (like I am right now) and stumble upon pictures of alumnae doing the same tradition I will be doing in several months, with some very cool variations.

Laurel Parade class of 1970
For example, the class of 1970 opted to carry signs to protest the Vietnam War and then donate the cost of the laurel chain to a charity
program for young women.

I look forward to joining them, in all honestly, when I graduate this spring. I like weird little campus traditions like this

But... I have to wear white.

I'm not opposed to wearing white for special occasions, but as I've never had to buy a white dress before this has become somewhat of a taxing process for me. This isn't helped by the fact that retailers like to slap the "wedding dress" label on white dresses and inflate the price ten times over, but I digress. Here are some of the designs I've been looking at for laurel parade dresses.

Torrid
Torrid

eShakti
Lindy Bop
Modcloth
Unique Vintage
Forever21

Ordinarily for a white outfit I might pick up some black accessories to make it more my style but I won't be doing that for this event. I've been thinking about getting a white flower crown or something though, I think against long black curly hair it'd be pretty cute.

My goal is to buy a dress that I will later be able to dye (maybe to a beautiful blue or red, if not back to black) to incorporate into my regular wardrobe so I'm mostly looking for shapes that I could use at other times. I still have some time to decide since the event is not until May, but starting now feels like the best course of action.

Have you ever put together a gothic white outfit?

15 comments:

  1. Mary Rose, what a wonderful tradition! I'm so glad that you're participating. But like you, I like weird little college traditions and all the camaraderie. My university where I'm a professor has a "Rat Funeral" (they're not living rats thankfully) and they also go through the "Coffin Door" when they graduate.

    This post immediately takes me back to when I was a younger-years goth girl reading Propaganda magazine and discovering the ever-so-handsome John Koviak in white! I don't think I had ever seen anything more lovely.

    I love the neckline in the last dress (Forever 21). I've never had to wear white because OY! I know I would get a make-up/food/grass stain in seconds! I look forward to pictures of you.

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    1. I love the idea of the coffin door, something about that seems only appropriate as I go into the job market haha.
      Thank you! I have the same worries about white--not ten minutes ago I spilled coffee on a black and white striped skirt and I'm still trying to make sure it doesn't stain.

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  2. Those choices are really pretty. Another place I'd recommend is ASOS. They don't have much at the moment http://www.asos.com/women/curve-plus-size/cat/pgecategory.aspx?cid=9577&via=top#state=Rf900%3D1465%40Rf-200%3D5&parentID=Rf-200&pge=0&pgeSize=36&sort=-1 but more spring stock is coming in every week and I'd say their prices are pretty reasonable.

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    1. I love Asos! I've had the same worries about not having enough selection but I'll absolutely keep an eye out there for the next few weeks. Thank you!

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  3. The last time I wore an all white outfit was at my middle school graduation.

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    1. I have a lot of friends who also had to wear white to their middle or highschool graduations, weird!

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  4. What a lovely tradition.

    I really like the Lindy Bop dress, and they are usually pretty nice quality. You're right about the slapping on the cost for a white dress - I was going to recommend Lady V London who do beautiful retro dresses but then noticed they'd labelled all their white stock as wedding dresses and put the prices up hugely.

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    1. It drives me bonkers! Especially as someone who absolutely would not wear white to my wedding.

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  5. I've never done a full white outfit that didn't have some sort of black pattern on it. Plus white is a scary colour for stains! I can imagine a floaty white dress with a flower crown, it would look soo pretty. Good idea to dye it later too!

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    1. Thank you! I'm hopeful it will turn out well!

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  6. What a lovely tradition! Get a 100% natural fabric dress or it will dye weirdly later. I have never worn a purely white outfit except in first grade when we were "snowflakes" dancing around the tree. I hate the colour, for my wedding I wore a purple bridesmaid dress.

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    1. I love differently colored wedding dresses, I'm sure you looked great! I'll try to keep an eye out for cotton or something similar, thank you for the tip!

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  7. The pictures you showed were all lovely, Mary.
    I too love traditions and really relate and akways made me feel like something greater than I.
    I was and am a "Sacred Heart " nurse.
    Proud and honored

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  8. varieties of wedding outfit get to see in white
    by,
    gracy
    askme

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