Sunday, March 21, 2010


I grew up going to church. Every week my Mom dressed us up in our Saturday best (I grew up SDA) and off we went. This is me age 7 or 8 on my way to church. Cute. :-)

It was a beautiful thing, quite literally. 'Cause although church was obviously not about looking nice, I have to admit, it was a mini fashion show. There were some pretty colourful characters too! I remember there was a lady who always had her shoes redone with the same fabric as her dresses. Can you imagine?!

The Sartorialist has featured quite a few "deacons" in on their way to and from church on Sunday, but never the "Church Ladies". I've often wondered why since in my memory the women were just as stylish, if not more so, dressed in their finery,...fur, ribbons, lace, bows, gloves, shoes and wonderfully elaborate hats.

Michael Cunningham and Craig Marberry's book Crowns: Portraits of Black Women in Church Hats is a beautiful collection of portraits of these very women.

The book, first published nearly ten years ago is now in it's seventh printing and has even inspired a play of the same name.

Here are some of my favourite portraits from the book.

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