Seeking Amelia

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An actress friend of mine has performed in several off-Broadway shows. Some were mildly interesting and others were quite good. One was about Amelia Earhart, the well known woman pilot who vanished while enroute on her famous trip around the world. Her disappearance has never been fully explained.

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And perhaps therein lies the mystique of the woman. Much like Marilyn Monroe, the public wonders what happened in her last hours. Did she crash in the ocean or make it to a tropical island? Was she alone and afraid when she died? Did she rally to the very end hoping against hope to be rescued?

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I’ve always admired Amelia and her struggle in a time when so little was expected of women. She was fortunate enough to be born into a family that was unconventional with  a mother who encouraged her to pursue her ‘tomboy’ interests-  collecting bugs, climbing trees and roughhousing with her younger sister.  She also dressed Amelia in unconventional clothing- bloomers (puffy pants).

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True to form, Amelia was aware of the disapproval of others regarding the bloomers, but would not be persuaded to change. They were comfortable and allowed more freedom of movement than a dress. That same attitude continued into adulthood when she endorsed her own line of clothing.

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Amelia navigated in a man’s world and in a mostly male career. She dressed the part-  leather flight jacket, pants, cap and goggles. But she was a woman, too. My favorite photo shows her sitting in her cockpit absently fingering a strand of pearls.

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Fashion- authentic flight jacket, vintage goggles, leather cap and pearls.

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