It seems to have a permanence in the realm of fabric that will forever recollect thoughts of a certain facet of Americana vintage. The same way patchwork recollects American prairie life, or blue and white stripes, that lovely sailing/Kennedy/holiday in the Hamptons/nautical vintage vibe.
But gingham is different than those other well-known patterns. It conjures up a A 1950's American splendor flavor, to be more specific. Gingham is known for picnicking. Picnicking!
I will never forget the scene in Madmen where the Drapers, on a happy little road trip, stop to have a picnic in a meadow! Don (an alcoholic who is having extra marital affairs) looks at Betty (who will later in the episode vomit in her own lap) lovingly while their children Sally (who will soon be forced to visit with a child psychologist) and Bobby (there's not much goin' on with Bobby) play. After lunch they hop back in their brand new Cadillac and go on their merry way...leaving all their garbage to blow in the wind. Ya know, a regular 1950's picturesque picnic!!!
So that is what's creepy about gingham. A fabric used for picnicking, which is an act that represents sheer relaxation and happiness, becoming popularized in the height of a time where people were desperate to hide any sort of disfunction of ugliness.
My life's a picnic....I SWEAR!
Now, thanks to the Oscar de la Renta 2013 resort collection, gingham is back and people are paying a pretty penny to participate in the happy little trend! Trendiness is not, however, why I purchased these shorts. I bought them for 2 reasons.
First, They are totally 90's GAP, a line of clothes which carry their own sort of nostalgic Bush era, 90's prep creepiness (in a good way) vibe. And secondly, so I could say, "there's a picnic in my pants, and you're invited."
What patterns do you love and why? Is it purely aesthetic, or do you get into the symbolism of it all?