I realize that when I wear it I look as though I am on my way to star in a Cinco de Mayo parade, but that is mainly why I love it. I found it in a vintage store by complete accident and was so surprised to see that actually fit me! It was meant to be, so I bought it. It is festive, whimsical, and did I mention that it has pockets?
Dress: Cream Vintage // Belt: Thrifted // Necklace: f21 //
My mom hates this dress. She thinks that it makes me look like an indigenous person, but I don't see why that would be a bad thing. Half of family comes from an indigenous background. Why should we be ashamed of that? Oh, I remember now. We're only supposed to be proud of the European half. Riiiiiiiight.
Growing up in a mostly all-white school district was not always easy for a dark, Mexican girl with frizzy hair and a funny accent. I didn't always fit in at school, and when I would come home, I would get mixed signals about what I was supposed to be. My parents would scold me for assimilating too much and not being proud enough of our Mexican culture. Yet, my mother would get upset if I spent too much time out in the sun. "Te ves como una india!" she would yell at me and remind me to cover my skin so that it wouldn't get too dark. I played soccer like a good Mexican daughter, but I would also slather myself in as much SPF as I could find. Tan lines were not something to be happy about in my family.
Even though I thought my mother's dark caramel skin was beautiful and flawless, we were taught that we would be better off lighter skinned like my father. My brother and I got my mother's black hair, dark brown eyes and brown skin. My sister was born the guera with honey eyes, peach skin, brown wavy hair and a metabolism to envy. The consensus among my family is that she got the "good" genes.
As a teenager, I remember seeing my peers spend their allowances on dark tanning oils while I hid in the shade, greasy with sunscreen. As an adult, I eventually embraced the color of my skin and actually enjoy my melanin. I appreciate that I do not burn in the sunlight. I like seeing the drastic contrast of skin color when I hold my husband's hand.
Pockets! ( I was going to take a jumping photo from this bench but chickened out)
Even though my family hopes that our future children will end up with light skin and light hair like my husband, I hope that our children will get my melanin to protect them from the sun. Either way, we will raise them in an atmosphere where all skin colors will be accepted and valued. And if they have a favorite outfit that I may not like, I'll let them wear it proudly anyway.
Do you have a favorite item of clothing?