Living in the city – in a flat with no outside space – I have no pets. It always seems wrong to me to confine something with 4 legs to staying in doors when they might not want to. And I don’t like fish or small wriggly things. And I really don’t like birds in cages.
So I do a bit of pet fancying. People who follow me on Twitter may have noticed my slight tendency to ask for pet photos. I’m not far gone enough to go to websites with funny animal pictures on them. But if I know a person and I know a pet, I like to see images. And sometimes in parks I eye up 4-legged things a-frolicking.
In amongst my collected bits of paper I don’t have many found photos (that is a whole other meme, not going there) but I do have a couple of nice Edwardian ones featuring ladies out and about. Initially it’s a costume thing that draws me to a photo (or a shop thing). Images of ladies trussed up, boned, be-ribboned, hatted and shod going about their business are endlessly fascinating to me. I like an illustrated fashion plate. But I also like social historical photos that show a nice bit of real fashion. Or costume, as academics would call it.
This photo is dated about 1915-18, so probably during the 1st World War. I have no idea where it was taken. But it is also a bit out of time, simply a really nice image taken on a warm summer day somwhere on a river. It’s a lovely rowing boat and a lovely perky dog.
The woman looks very tidy indeed in her striped shirtwaist blouse, silk tie and panelled wool skirt. Women’s fashions were understandably more circumspect during war years. Certainly there’s nothing frou frou going on here. Even her gorgeous straw hat – although wrapped about with a patterned fabric – has a nod and a wink to the military helmet about its silhouette.