DUNGAREES: casual or work pants made from a denim-type fabric

Young builder in a hardhat and dungarees standing on an outdoor building site checking on order or contract

Today we call them jeans and they are a fashion item.   You can buy them in J.C. Penney’s or you can go to fashion shops in New York City (like 3×1)  and pay ten times the Penney price. We used to wear dungarees (now called jeans) because they were cheap, sturdy, and anything but fashionable.   […]

BUCK THE TRENDS: daring to go against the dominant ways of society

bucking trends

A child loving a book instead of an electronic device is something that makes a librarian’s heart sing.  It doesn’t really have to be either/or; there are times when the electronic device is appropriate.  But the disposal of books in the belief that there is nothing left to read but Kindles or IPads is a […]

CORDUROY [KAWR-duh-roi]: a cotton-filling pile fabric with lengthwise cords or ridges


It has been wonderful to pull my “cords” from the closet to wear this past couple of weeks.   They are my pants that are made of corduroy, a fabric made from cotton, but with vertical ridges.   The fabric is used for casual/dressy clothing…everything from pants to jackets, vests, coats, dresses, skirts, and even upholstery.  For […]

TONY: stylish, classy


Now this is a word that is used, seemingly, in only the most upscale fashion magazines and articles.   Tony is not used as a man’s name in this case.   In fact, it is a word that is attributed to both men and women, and even to inanimate objects such as apartments, homes, houseboats and the […]

HANDKERCHIEF [HANG-ker-cheef]: a cloth square carried in a pocket to wipe one’s nose


I don’t think I ever left my house without my grandmother asking me, “Do you have a hanky?”   It was so planted in my head that I would never have thought about getting dressed without checking my back, left pocket to see if I had a handkerchief tucked in there.   “Back in the day,” as younger […]

SWASHBUCKLING: a swaggering or flamboyant adventurer

Although used most commonly in reference to pirates, the term swashbuckler need not be boxed in.  It is a term found in literature as early as the 16th century, and seems to have something to do with fencing.  A swashbuckler is someone who “bounces his sword  off the shield of an opponent.” As the centuries […]