traditional Pilgrim woman
Furthermore, I don't look good in anything that even resembles a dirndl skirt (not many do!) and although black dominates my closet, I wouldn't want to wear it as a uniform every single day. BOR - ING.
Actually, I grew up near Lancaster, Pennsylvania so I am very familiar with this type of dress as I got to see the Amish and Mennonite quite often. I'm not positive, but I think the Mennonite people are a less strict version of the Amish. They wear the "tea strainers" (I credit my mother with that description) over their bun-like hairdo's and I'm pretty sure they're allowed to use electricity... and they may even drive cars! Still, their outfits have a lot to be desired.
Mennonite woman with her "tea strainer"
When I first came to New York (too many years ago to reveal), I used to tell people that I was Amish and I busted out one day because I was sick of the lifestyle. Sick of wearing the same damn thing every day and the same damn thing as everyone else. That's why I became a designer. I could usually keep people going for a while until I tried to describe my escape -- riding my horse and buggy up the PA turnpike into NYC. Can you imagine?
A couple of years ago, the great Steven Meisel did a shoot for Italian Vogue where they featured Amish fashion and their way of life as the concept for the spread. Interesting. Of course, they used a lot more color and pattern not to mention sexy, young models. Still, I thought even they looked a bit frumpy.
cover, Vogue Italia, February 2008