Megan and the Retrofitters


Why, hello!
Why, hello

I’m Megan Donahue. I’m a writer, actor, and generally crafty sort, and I’m fairly good at a number of things that we invented machines to do for us. And I wear a lot of clothes that went out of style at least forty years ago.

It makes sense I’d become a vintage blogger; I’ve always been captivated by the daily lives of people in the past. I spent a great deal of my childhood running around wearing prairie dresses and self-rigged hoopskirts, trying to re-enact “olden days.” Highlights of my adolescence included being a volunteer living history docent in a 19th century farmhouse, teaching myself to cook on a woodstove, and winning a 4-H award in “Folkpatterns.” Yes. “Folkpatterns.” (Folkpatterns is a hokey word for cultural anthropology, as far as I can tell).  may have thrown out some really great babies with some really disgusting bath water.

I love vintage design, antique etiquette books, all the clothes on Mad Men, aprons, and hosting dinner parties, but I don’t love a lot of the facts about the periods of history that these things originated in. I don’t want to go back in time, or wish that I lived in the 1950’s, or the 1890’s. I’m happy to be living in a society that has vaccinations, freedom of religion, that allows me to vote, and doesn’t automatically give all my property to whichever man I’m attached to, father or husband. If I had to choose between quilting and central heating, central heating would win.  There’s a lot that I am thrilled to leave in history, and even more that I wish would hurry up and be history (racism, classism, sexism).

But I maintain that one can take the good things, acknowledge a problematic past where there is one, and find some contemporary value in many skills that have been left behind by the industrial and technological revolutions. Basically, I’m trying to rescue a few really great babies we threw out with some very disgusting bathwater.

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