Technically that’s not true. I’m a bit of a costume and hat collector, so I do have quite a few pieces I could throw together, but the problem is that none of my options seems just right for an 1800’s hoe-down. Mostly because it’s hard to look hot at a hoe-down. In spite of the presence of hoes. Technically most of the people there will probably be wearing simple boots and t-shirts (and my granny will be wearing the latest JCPenneys look) but my sister and I feel that as the hostesses it’s incumbent on us that we (and our kids) are dressed in full-out prairie style. The kids are set because my sister can sew bonnets and prairie dresses like a mofo, but the complicated seams of a truly authentic Victorian-esque dress is a bit beyond her.
So today I went through my costume closet and found two options, complete with backstories.
Elizabeth Baker: Part spinsterish school marm, part secret agent/flying-machine specialist. Her mathematical talents will later lay the groundwork for the Dewey Decimal System, but she isn’t afraid to flash a bit of ankle to get what she wants. What she usually wants is guns. She’s got a lot of secrets, that one.
Matilda Clover: Once known through-out the west as Evening Wilder (“My friends call me “Even”) Matilda was forced to change her name when she inadvertently killed a man by stabbing him in the face 18 times when he touched her knee without permission. Many suspect she’s a whore, but the men who come to her room only visit to buy her home-made, practically lethal moonshine which she creates herself out of a secret passion for chemistry. She is a bad-ass with a tiny gun (which was gifted to her by Elizabeth Baker, a strong supporter of women in booze sciences.)
Personally, I’m leaning toward option one because I don’t want to have to say “I’m not a whore” at a family gathering any more than usual. But I’m still not sure it’s quite right. That is, I wasn’t sure until my sister emailed me what she’d turned up when looking for adult Laura Ingall’s style costumes.
Yep. Option one is looking pretty damn good right now.