Style Icon: My Mother
Growing up my family traveled frequently, always bringing home the most ornate trinkets and gifts- not just your average colorful postcards! I was about 5 when I saw my first sari, my parents had just come back from a recent trip to Bombay for a friend’s wedding and with silver dollar eyes I sat at my mother’s vanity and watched her unpack. The first suitcase was filled with richly hued and jewel encrusted scarves and tapestries, the second contained a jewelry box filled with the most intricately detailed gold jewelry and several equally elaborate dresses- saris as my mother called them. Sitting in complete awe of a world so different than my youth I asked her to put one on and in absolute amazement watched my mother dress. She was a vision. Naturally every young girl cherishes her mother- but there, sitting on her velvet vanity stool with legs dangling, I knew I not only loved her but also admired the woman she was. Once dressed and adorned in illuminating elegance she propped me on her lap and in detail discussed the wedding- from the bridal party’s procession on embellished elephants to the colorful lanterns hanging from the ceiling of the reception, even fully detailing the bride’s attire and jewelry adorned. As I sat and listened I traced the beading of her sari up to the carved gold earring linking to nose, I wanted to absorb it all- her words, the textures. After she asked if I had any questions, to which my only response regarded when I would be joining them. We still laugh about that day and the curiosity of my youth- uninterested in typical sandbox happenings, but instead in experiencing the world.
Since that magical day spent listening to my mother discuss a place foreign to my surroundings we have frequently traveled to India, and each time it feels like the first time. With each trip I’m equally as mystified as the first time I saw my mother and the world illuminate in front of me.