My grandfather owned a successful drugstore and was an ample provider, but Mimi was a fashionista before we even knew what the term meant, and she wanted to buy her clothes and accessories with her own money. Neiman Marcus, A. Harris, Sanger Bros., Titche-Goettinger...all were names on the boxes and bags she brought home from shopping trips to Dallas.
Beautiful kid gloves, gorgeous pumps made of alligator or crocodile, exquisite matching handbags, amazing hats of every hue (and a memorable bucket hat made of pheasant feathers)...there were so many things to fascinate a young girl.
I particularly loved her rhinestone jewelry, and every time I visited, the first thing I asked to do was play dress up in her sparkly necklaces and earrings. Mimi has been gone since 1986, but I've kept my favorite pieces all these years. They're over 60 years old, and a couple are missing rhinestones here and there, but I still love them.
I don't know where she went in a rural East Texas town of 1200 to wear her glamorous jewelry. I'd like to think that perhaps she and my grandfather slipped away for a romantic weekend in the city now and again, where she dressed to rival Grace Kelly and felt like a movie star-turned-princess.