Helen [not her real name] got married during World War II. There was strict rationing in Australia at the time. Wedding dresses were exempt, but not other non-essential items such as a trousseau for the honeymoon. Being a feisty young woman even then (and she is still, in her 80s, a feisty old woman), Helen decided to get what she needed wherever she could.
Pellegrini’s Catholic Depot was the traditional supplier of Catholic religious furnishings in Brisbane. Helen bought lace altar cloths, and sewed them into the lingerie that was considered suitable for her wartime honeymoon. Possibly the crosses, chi rhos, and other religious symbols on her knickers and nightdresses added to their sexy allure. Continue reading