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Damn You, Baby Doll Dresses!

While we wait for the Weblog Award votes to be tallied (the final outcome will be posted tomorrow morning), two stories.

Getting back in touch with people via Facebook has reminded me of my favourite mistaken identity story. During college, I was friends with a man who is apparently far too google-able to write out his name here but all we need for this tale is that his last name contains the word “hip.”

I thought I saw him standing on Library Mall, holding his bike, so I walked up to him and when I was right behind him, I attempted to scare/surprise him by screaming his name and then saying these incredibly cool words: “you’re my fucking hippie hippie hipster!”

The man turned around and was not said friend, but that wasn’t the embarrassing part.

At that moment he turned around, a huge gust of wind occurred, blowing my Urban Outfitters baby doll dress (this was college in the early 90s) over my head so that as he turned, he was staring at a woman who was flashing her mismatched bra and panties at him while trying to push down her dress.

This would have been a good enough ending if the same thing hadn’t happened again two years later.

Having not learned as a sophomore not to wear baby doll dresses, I wore one for a performance that required a black dress and black tights. There was only one dress rehearsal and it was directly before the performance and we weren’t really moving through the steps insomuch as making sure everyone knew their cues. I noted that my dress was shorter than most of the other girls but was probably fine.

The performance was luckily being video taped and I was able to get a copy of this tape. This is what you see: I’m singing the Gershwin song: “I’m dancing and I can’t be bothered now. I’m dancing and I caaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaan’t, caaaaaaaaaaaaaaan’t be bothered now!” Step, kick, and twirl and twirl and my dress is over my armpits, the audience is gasping at my black bra and panties, I am twirling, my partner dips me, and….scene.

Afterwards, my friends and I stood around awkwardly until one boy finally said, “well, at least you wore that really good black push-up bra tonight.”


1 Jen { 01.14.09 at 8:48 pm }

Okay, that made me laugh a lot. I hate baby doll dresses and now I have a good reason.

2 areyoukiddingme { 01.14.09 at 9:07 pm }

I’ve never worn a baby doll dress, and now I never will.

Too funny.

3 Jess { 01.14.09 at 9:17 pm }


4 Lori { 01.14.09 at 9:19 pm }

Hee hee!

Aren’t you glad you remembered the underclothing beneath the overclothing?

Would you post the video?

5 Megan { 01.14.09 at 9:21 pm }

too funny!!!

6 kate { 01.14.09 at 9:26 pm }

Oh, MAN. That last story reminded me of a situation my senior year in high school involving a babydoll dress and (whoops) no panties…

I was playing the part of Benvolio in R&J (yeah, my director was into gender bending…), and in the scene after the big party where Mercutio, Romeo and the "boys" are hanging out, I was supposed to be laying on the ground in my party clothes, and Sonia (who was playing Mercutio) was supposed to kick me, and I would barrel roll a few times. Normally, this is no big deal, 'cos even if the dress flies up, I'm wearing heavy black tights.

Costume-wise, in the scene prior, I was wearing jeans, and usually just wore the tights underneath, but for this particular performance, for some reason, I wore tights and ONLY tights under the jeans, and when doing the quick costume change, while removing my jeans, I ripped the shit out of the tights and couldn't even possibly wear them under the dress. The ass split, and one entire leg basically ripped down the back seam, so, like, REALLY unsalvageable.

So cut to me, standing in the back of the house, waiting for our entrance, with Sonia on Josh's shoulders, and me trying to whisper to Sonia not to kick me too hard because I'm drawer-less, and Josh yells, "Shut the fuck up, Kate. Do you want the whole audience to hear you? They don't need to know that you aren't wearing panties!"

And of course, we don't realize that the door is totally open and that, in fact the audience could hear and Josh just yelled loud enough that the back three rows, including my 10 year old brother, and the assistant director (who later explained to me what the laughter was really about) heard everything he said, and laughed raucously as we made our entrance.

Luckily, though, because I told Sonia, she didn't kick, and I didn't roll and so only the last three rows of people had any clue that I was "commando" while on stage, but it could have been a lot worse. Stupid baby doll dresses…

I mean, I seem to recall that the long, flowy skirts were also very in at that point. What was my damage that I thought it was a good costume choice (and that my director agreed with that choice) to wear a baby doll dress when his direction called for me to roll about on the stage? Gah.

Anyway, thank you for the blast from the past.

I seriously wonder how many of us who lived through that trend that have atrocious embarrassing stories about these fashion nightmares??? Thousands, I’m sure.

7 Paz { 01.14.09 at 10:13 pm }

Oh no! Really? It’s OK to laugh right? because it happened long ago and … is it ok to laugh because that is f-in hysterical!

When does the video get posted.


8 Kristin { 01.14.09 at 10:40 pm }

Bwahahahaha…I love that you are secure enough to share these stories.

9 The Steadfast Warrior { 01.14.09 at 10:41 pm }

OMG! Freaking hilarious! Baby doll dresses were not made to fit my body. I think I’m safe.

And Kate’s story? Even better! Where do you guys come up with this stuff! 😉

10 Cassandra { 01.14.09 at 11:10 pm }

I always wore my baby doll dresses with leggings. Leggings are their own monstrosity, but at least they reduce the probability of flashing.

11 Another Dreamer { 01.14.09 at 11:49 pm }

LOL!!!! I needed that, thanks 🙂

Sorry that happened to you, but you can laugh about it now… right?

12 geohde { 01.14.09 at 11:55 pm }

I’ve never been a fan of anything that shows my knees, because they’re horridly knobbly. Also scared of short for reasons you’ve just described 🙂


13 luna { 01.15.09 at 1:09 am }

I don’t do short anymore either.

but glad you had the right bra, at least!

14 'Murgdan' { 01.15.09 at 4:36 am }

Yeah, I pretty much don’t do dresses at all…because I’m too paranoid about having such an easy exit from my clothing.

15 siscaboo { 01.15.09 at 6:30 am }

Oh my gosh. I am soo sorry, but, that was funny.

I never did the baby doll dress thing. Always wanted to but, I didn’t.

16 Mrs. Higrens { 01.15.09 at 7:54 am }

I think I managed to block that fashion trend from my memory. Probably a good thing, huh?

Thanks for the early laugh on what’s not a great morning.

17 Michelle { 01.15.09 at 8:53 am }


18 Fertilized { 01.15.09 at 9:23 am }

Oh and to think, they are back in style ..complete with tights

Thanks for making me laugh

19 annacyclopedia { 01.15.09 at 10:24 am }

You have such great stories, Mel!

20 Jendeis { 01.15.09 at 11:50 am }

You are not alone, my friend. You are not alone. Flashed at least of my college.

Once I got out of college, I decided that the baby doll dresses made me look pregnant (when, in fact, I was not) and have not worn one from that day to this.

21 Jane { 01.15.09 at 12:23 pm }

How embarrassing! I know how you feel. I have had my dress go up twice in my life and both times I was mortified! Once, I wore a baby doll dress and I was walking out of a store when the wind hit me and blew my dress straight up in the air. I was so embarrassed that I never wore that dress again. I have also had my dress accidentally lifted by a coworker who tried to help me from falling. That was the only time I ever cried at work. It was so bad,it happened right in front of several men that worked with me.

22 bleu { 01.15.09 at 1:56 pm }

But how did the boy know it was a “good” push up bra and not just a regular one hmmm???

23 ..soo.see.. { 01.15.09 at 2:25 pm }

too funny!! i had and wore too many of these dresses and back then w/ combat boots! ::blushing:: (i haven’t been by in a while and i feel bad abt that.. so i’m a week late, but i’m delurking,,, again.)

24 *T* { 01.15.09 at 6:16 pm }

Thank you so much for those stories, I needed to laugh. Thank you.

25 Tara { 01.15.09 at 7:20 pm }

HA!! You are my fucking hippie hippie hipster! That is the line of the day….

26 battynurse { 01.15.09 at 8:55 pm }

Oh my. I’ve never worn a baby doll dress because they don’t do much for my chubby knees. Kind of glad at this point that I never did.

27 WaterBishop { 01.16.09 at 10:32 am }

One day in college I was wearing an old dress I bought at a thrift store. It was rainy and very windy. I was walking down the sidewalk and right when I was passing this one guy a gust of wind came and whipped my dress up and all the thread must have been on it’s last legs because all the buttons popped off.
So there i was standing with all the buttons missing up to my bare chest with the dress blowing up around my shoulders, revealing that day’s granny panties.The guy I was passing ran to my rescue and threw his coat over me. That was nice. I had to staple the dress back together to tide me over until I got home to change.

28 Candide { 01.17.09 at 9:05 am }

Ha Ha Ha, that’s hilarious!!!!! Did the guy say anything????? I had a similar experience, I got into the car and started talking, when I realized it wasn’t my boyfriends car! There was this old guy staring at me! I had climbed in to a total stranger’s car! I got right out of there. He probably thought I was crazy!!! As for baby doll dresses, I’m afraid to wear them for the exact reason stated here. The only thing worse is a wraparound skirt. My best friend in college had her wraparound skirt blow open big time!!! Lots of folks saw her! She was quite upset!

29 Anonymous { 08.07.09 at 11:56 am }

I've never worn a babydoll without anything at all underneath, but two days ago i did! By accident of course. I had been at the bathroom at the movies, and the elastics in my panties snapped… so I wore my babydoll dress and nothing else. The first gust of wind I could manage, but as i was standing waiting to cross the street, a stronger gust suddenly lifted my skirt so high I was naked as I tried to get it down again! I've never flashed people that much, sure i've had skirts blow up before… but never like that. It was the most embarrassing thing ever to happen to me.

(c) 2006 Melissa S. Ford
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