I was strolling through Time Warner Center last summer when I spotted a pair of denim overalls hanging on the wall.
Denim overalls. I hadn’t seen them since the 90’s (or I’ve been unaware of their presence.)
My friends argued against it. I would seem too dated. I might look like an adult in Osh Kosh. They’ll make you look heavy/hippy/crunchy/unstylish.
I bought them anyway. I love them so, so much. I don’t regret the decision.
Every time I bring them out of their safely-folded state in my dresser, I smile. Because no matter how far I get away from the trees of my home state of West Virginia, I will always be a country girl at heart.
There will always be a part of me that wants to run barefoot in the grass, catch fireflies in a jar, and drink “sun tea” (if you don’t know what that is, I can break it down for you later.) My mind goes back to leaving my house right after breakfast on a sunny Saturday morning, grabbing my bike, and coming home when it was time for dinner.
Overalls meant I could get super dirty and help the boys in my neighborhood build a fort. It meant I could wear a bathing suit underneath and head to the pool or go play in the creeks in the forests near my home. It meant that I had pockets for house keys, pretty rocks, and found treasures like the Civil War-era coin I once found behind Shelter #2 in Coonskin Park.
In my twenties, they stood for breezy concert festivals, days spent dancing on the Earth from sun up to the dark of night at concert festivals. Don a tank underneath and wrap a flannel around your waist and you were good to go for the day. Overalls were my look of choice on some of the most amazing nights of my life. I was wearing overalls when Michael Anthony threw a pick at me at a Van Halen concert. I was dancing in overalls as the fires were lit on the grass during the second season of Lollapalooza, where hundreds of people moshed in a circle around the pyres as the Red Hot Chili Peppers called for all of us to reach for Higher Ground.
I didn’t wear them in my thirties. I was too busy trying to be cool or something. I have no idea why.
And now, I wear them on the streets of New York City, bustling with new adventures and the promise of more adventures. They’ll be my chosen outfit when I see the Foo Fighters for the first time next week in Washington, DC. I’ll be throwing them over a swimsuit when I head to Long Beach and The Hamptons in a couple of weeks. I’ll pair them with heels and a tank top to gather with girlfriends and share laughs and meals during the dog days of summer. I’ll put pretty shells and beach rocks in my pockets. I’ll help my friends’ kids build a fort. I might ride a bike until it turns dark.
But my overalls are here to stay. Oh, what adventures await us.
All photos: giafrese