Christmas Dances

One of my favorite things during the Christmas season was all the dances I attended. While my family wasn’t affluent enough to have a country club membership, I had several friends who invited me and my date to attend the Snowflake Ball at Hickory Hills (the country club of the 80s). I have many fond memories of the dances, the dates I had and the dresses I wore, but one of my favorites was the Christmas I was in 8th grade.

It was 1979 and my grandparents from Fulton, MO were visiting. I didn’t have a steady boyfriend, so I asked my neighbor and good friend Don to be my date (Don would later become my first serious boyfriend, but that’s another story). I remember exactly what I wore. Earlier in the year, mom and I had shopped for dance dresses so she could score the best deal. I found a gorgeous dress at The Children’s Shoppe, Springfield’s upscale clothing store for babies, children and teens. Gunne Sax was the brand and style of dresses all fashionable girls were wearing. Made of lace and calico, they were modern interpretations of old fashioned dresses. Of course, there were many knock-offs around, but I wanted the real thing. Naturally, mom found one on sale that met both of our needs. It was a dark green calico with semi-sheer while sleeves, lace trim and pearl buttons. I wore it with nude hose and my chocolate suede Candie’s shoes. Man, I was stylin’.

Don’s mother called my mom to get the detailed information on my dress so my corsage would match. Not only did I have a coordinating corsage, but Don wore his dad’s dark green suit. We looked so great!

My grandfather, Keck, took us to the dance and my most vivid memory of that car trip was him wearing his Sherlock Holmes hat. Don was fascinated by it and commented on it several time during the evening. I’m sure Keck entertained Don with several embarrassing stories about me and my family too.

I remember it was a fun evening and I probably ducked when Don attempted to kiss me good night. That was long before I had any feelings for him!

I still long for the days when Christmas meant dressing up and attending parties. Alas, I have no parties to attend this year, but I might just dress up and drag Steve out with me anyway!

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2 Comments

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2 responses to “Christmas Dances

  1. Suzanne

    You were a step ahead of me with the “real” dress. My mom made me a couple “Gunne Sax” styled dresses, getting the patterns from Simplicity. Loved the tiered skirts and pretty pearl button accents. I wore ivory hose and ivory pointy-toed flats. Felt so feminine and demure!

  2. Ralph

    I always thought your lavendar dress with the ruffle across the top was soooo beautiful. That was before I had to be a bridesmaid several times though.
    Grammie and Keck were visiting when I went to a Christmas dance with Stephen. Keck told him he couldn’t kiss me on the first date to which Stephen replied that this was our second date!

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