Babes in the woods

Here it is Halloween and I have not posted one costume. This is not actually a costume, either, but a lovely Victorian Lace nightgown that could be worn year round. However, something about it reminds me of the most frightening of Mother Goose rhymes, Babes in the Woods:

My dear do you know,
How a long time ago,
Two poor little children,
Whose names I don’t know,
Were stolen away
On a fine summers day,
And left in a wood,
As I’ve heard people say,

Poor babes in the wood! poor babes in the wood!
Oh! don’t you remember the babes in the wood?

And when it was night,
So sad was their plight,
The sun it went down,
And the moon gave no light!
They sobbed and they sighed,
And they bitterly cried,
And the poor little things,
They lay down and died.

Poor babes in the wood! poor babes in the wood!
Oh! don’t you remember the babes in the wood?

And when they were dead,
The robins so red
Brought strawberry leaves,
And over them spread;
And all the day long,
The branches among,
They mournfully whistled,
And this was their song;

Poor babes in the wood! poor babes in the wood!
Oh! don’t you remember the babes in the wood?

The nightgown from Studio Sidhe is such an iconic gown that would be appropriate for so many interpretations. I could imagine it as Mina’s gown in Bram Stoker’s Dracula or the nightie that Anne of Green Gables wore when reenacting the Lady of Shallot on the pond. I can see Jo March and her sisters wearing it, too. But, it’s Halloween and this gown reminds me of the heartbreaking illustration of Babes in the Woods from my childhood Illustrated Mother Goose and the little white  nightie worn by the little girl.

Perhaps growing up in the middle of a forest full of wildlife – including bears and timberwolves gave that poem immediacy. I remember the feel of my heart pounding while walking home from the school bus, taking a deerpath shortcut through the woods and hearing the gruff snort of a bear and pausing, holding my breath while trying to decide if the sound came from ahead or behind, left or right – and veering to another path to avoid a close encounter that my parents always said would scare the bear as much as me. I never quite believed them and so Babes in the Woods captured some of my biggest fears in one small phrase, “Poor babes in the woods. Don’t you remember the babes in the woods.”

Of course, walking a few miles through the woods twice a day, I was bound to bump into bears a couple of times. My parents were right, they took of running as fast as they could. However, just because they were right never managed to convince me that every bear would be scared. For my Babes in the Woods encounter in Bentham Forest – I went barefoot as the children in my Mother Goose were barefoot. The bare feet are from SLink. They come in flat, med and high-arched versions. These are the medium version which I think give that feeling of tension and being poised to flee.

One of the great joys of this Victorian Lace nightgown is the attention to detail in the handdrawn textures. Faery Sola is an amazing clothing designer. She doesn’t make many clothes, but they are exquisitely made and absolutely unique. Even the cuffs are worked over with loving attention to detail. The movement of the prims are natural and with two dress prims that seem to move in counterpoint the coverage is nearly perfect with few movements exposing the underlying glitch pants.  The hair is from Truth – a style called Harlow. It also echoes the hair in the Mother Goose though that hair had a wide satin ribbon.

The skin is one of the new makeups for blowpop’s Elizabeth. Choosing this was partly a nod to Anne of Green Gables – as a I remember the Mother Goose girl having a cherubic face. However, really I choose it because the skin is just so right in so many ways.

***STYLE NOTES******
Promotional Copies are denoted by a Bold R

  • Poses: Behavior Body
  • Skin: Blowpop Elizabeth anaconda 2 R
  • Eyes: PXL Creations Glow Yellow Green R
  • Lashes: Lelutka Diva Prim Lashes
  • Hair: Truth Harlow
  • Nightgown: Studio Sidhe Victorian Lace Nightgown R
  • Feet: SLink Jolie Pied Barefoot
  • Jewelry Aluinn Cascade Dual Pearl Necklace

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