2/3 Book Challenge: Let’s Bring Back

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I should have written this review much closer to finishing Let’s Bring Back – sometime in July – as I would have been able to share more delightful specifics. The book is a celebration of nostalgia, of the manners and customs of a better time.

One aspect of the book that I loved was the broad definition of ‘a better time’. In skimming the book together, Mom and I both found aspects of our childhoods – hers from the 50s, mine from the 80s. My grandma, born in 1918, could have done the same. There are remembrances of early 20th century cultural figures – and entries advocating for the return of naps. There are recipes for drinks, and bon mots such as the following list of quotes attributed to Edith Head:

  • “You can have anything you want in life if you dress for it.”
  • “The cardinal sin is not being badly dressed, but wearing the right thing in the wrong place.”
  • “Your dresses should be tight enough to show you’re a woman and loose enough to prove you’re a lady.”
  • “Clothes not only can make the woman; they can make her several different women.”
  • “I say sacrifice style any day for becomingness.”
It was thanks to this book that I knew exactly what a remarkable find I’d made when I found a pair of Elsa Schiaparelli stockings in a lot of six pairs for $12. And thanks to this book, I have yet another argument in support of my favorite color scheme: brown and pink and cream, the colors of Neapolitan ice cream: “Strawberry, vanilla, and chocolate side by side: This combination of pink, white, and brown should be made into the flag of some languorous, pleasure-oriented country.”

 

A languorous, pleasure-oriented country. I like that. Let’s bring that back as well.

 

This is the fourteenth of at least 15 books that I plan to read in the next year for my friend Mark’s 2/3 Challenge.

Photo by BlueVelvetVintage.com, licensed under Creative Commons

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