The trendy throwback style, the pilgrim look, worn first by Martha Merica ’1614 has caught the attention of many in the Academy. Since Junior year, Merica, who has great posture due to her lack of a backpack as well as her exceptionally tight corset, has been seen carrying her books either by hand or, more commonly, by her signature monogrammed weaved basket. Depending on the day, she alternates between an exceptionally, almost black, shade of brown and delicate, black dresses that hang loosely from the top of her dainty figure to her ankles. Colorful, I know.
“Following pilgrim fashion, you never have to worry about the cankles or thunder thighs. I always get to pounce on the Paresky Commons’ cookies and the magic bars,” says Merica.
Hardly needing to express her individuality even more, she occasionally fashions colorful bonnets for those days that feel a little too drab. Inspired by her great grandmother’s great grandmother’s second cousin, Merica has been developing her fashion sense since she received her first white bodice in the first grade.
“I really identify with the pilgrim way of life. Modern attire simply didn’t flatter my figure anyways. This way I get to feel secure when I bend over, but still bold with my fashion choices.”
One of the few drawbacks to the pilgrim fashion statement is that Merica takes an entire hour to fully adorn herself every morning. What most people don’t realize is that Merica’s look has more than what meets the eye. Under the skirt, Merica informs us, lay her bodice, skirt, breeches, underpants and stockings.
“It can be very frustrating sometimes when I get completely dressed and then realize I forgot to put on my garters. I have to start all over again. When I get it right though, there is no better feeling,” Merica said.
Another reason to admire Merica’s look is to appreciate just how practical it is for the typical Andover student. The ruffled white collar attached to the frock is excellent for storing any TI-83/84s, and Merica’s BlueCard slips nicely into her stocking.
The pilgrim attire fits a peaceful, daily life without celebration. “No dances or parties fit under the frock,” says Merica. Instead of the weekend dances in Susie’s, Merica takes herself and her style to late night berry pickings in the Cochran Bird Sanctuary.
Her typical outfit consists of a light brown, vegetable-dyed smock on top of her complex ensemble. Be sure to keep an eye out for Merica’s look! It would be a shame to overlook such a pure style.