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September 21, 2011

Vintage cars, vintage clothes, and a little 'Mystique'

Model Tiffany Eberhard poses with a 1954 Mercedes-Benz 300SL gullwing coupe. As part of my daily routine as the blog editor for Ask Patty, I always pour over google results for keywords like 'automotive' and 'women' to find topics to write about.  Invariably, as a result I find many results that are only slightly related to what I'm actually looking for, and I also find a lot of local and regional events across North America.  This is one of those, which I generally choose not to write about unless someone from Ask Patty is attending, but this one just excites me too much to ignore.  This weekend in Athens, GA classic cars meet classic fashion at "The Mystique of the Automobile: A Festival of Cars, Art and Fashion."  As the photo to the left attests, this looks to be one classy gathering.  And speaking of photos, this one came from the Athens Banner-Herald's online article about the show, which can be seen here, and it did not include a photo credit.  I'd love to properly credit it if I can, though.  Anybody know who took the pic?

Now, as we all know if you've read the Ask Patty blog before, I'm a fan of the classic automobile, and of the relics of the late gilded age in general.  This was an age when women were taking the first important steps away from being "the fairer sex" and into the spotlight of empowered individuals, thanks not only to the very public efforts of women like Helen Keller and Susan B. Anthony, but to the lesser known stories taking place in every American household in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, women were stepping out of the role handed to them, and we won the vote in 1913.  I've told you here about the amazing Edith Stuyvesant Vanderbilt, who singlehandedly ran her husband's sprawling North Carolina estate after his early death, and broke with tradition by driving herself about in several cars and two Harley-Davidson motorcycles.  I love these ladies, and I love their cars.

That's why an event like this resonates with me.  This particular show will feature 80-100 automobiles, including We have a 1912 Ford Model T, a 1922 Moon, a 1941 Cadillac, a 1954 Mercedes-Benz 300SL gullwing coupe (pictured), and a 1935 DeSoto Airflow.  Beautiful, unique cars hand-picked for this unique event.  Plus, along with these cars, the Lyndon House Arts Center will host a fashion show full of vintage clothing courtesy of one aptly-named Beverly Bourgeois, owner of a vintage clothing shop called Ritzy Rags. Her collection reportedly starts in the early 1900s and goes on to present day, and outfits were hand-picked to best compliment the automobiles and their periods, so look for slinky 1920s dresses, glamorous gowns from the 30s and 40s, skirts from the 50s, outfits reminiscent of Jackie Kennedy Onassis in the 60s and flasy fashions from the 70s.

If I were near Athens, GA this weekend you can bet this is where I would be, in a flash.  (After paying a visit to Ask Patty CFF tire dealer Bulldog Tire in nearby Monroe, of course)  Those of you who are close, get out there and enjoy this unique blending of cars, fashion, and art.  And to the rest of the Ask Patty Nation, take note: if you're going to put together a classic car show, this is absolutely the way to do it.  

Here are the details on this show:

“The Mystique of the Automobile: A Festival of Cars, Art and Fashion”

Lyndon House Arts Center, 293 Hoyt St.

Noon-5:30 p.m. Sept. 24

This event is free and open to the public and will be held rain or shine.

Handicap and patron parking available in front of Lay Park. Patrons who have difficulty walking can be dropped off at the entrance on Hoyt Street. Additional parking is available at the Athens Community Council on Aging.

For more information call, (706) 255-7039 or (706) 613-3623 ext. 224 or email or visit or

  Kaeli Gardner, Inc.
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