“Dancing is like dreaming with your feet” 

I was born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area. 

At the age of three I started taking dancing lessons, with fantasies of becoming the next Shirley Temple. 

I am certain this was the genesis of my intense interest in fashion. How I loved wearing those elaborate, fabulous, and glamorous creations of tulle and satin and sequins, enhanced by my mother’s red lipstick and rouge.

 And the tap shoes... there is nothing like the sound of tap shoes.

My most vivid costume memory is the chartreuse organdy dress, starched so stiff that I can still feel that beautiful, sharp fabric scratching my skin... the costume of choice for a studio picture that would hang on Matilda Meyer’s famous wall of stars.

The beautiful Matilda Meyer was my dancing teacher. Under her tutelage, I tapped and pirouetted and high kicked my way through an otherwise challenging childhood and adolescence.  

When I was dancing I felt beautiful and elegant and light. I was a star...ahh... the smell of the greasepaint, the roar of the crowd...  

Dancing allowed me to dream and to imagine the possibilities. 

“If in doubt, wear sequins... and smile.”

My Professional Life

My professional  goal was to dance on Broadway... perhaps as a Rockette, with those glamorous, sequined costumes. My mother did not think that was a good idea.

I was, therefore, a registered nurse in California and New York (the closest I would get to Broadway), with some very unattractive white uniforms, white stockings, sensible white shoes, and big white cap perched precariously on my head. 

As a nurse for Club Med in the French West Indies I wore far fewer clothes. Part of my job was to dance and sing in elaborate evening productions... my dancing dream partially fulfilled. 

I was a psychiatric nurse for many years, then a hospital administrator and consultant specializing in women’s mental health issues for many more years, with a much improved, though unconventional wardrobe.

Fifteen years ago I moved to New Hampshire with my husband and son, wanting to experience life in New England. 

Me on Skype: JacquiePerry
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It was here that I made the transition from women’s mental health to retail (more similar than you might imagine), and where the Renaissance Room was born, allowing me to indulge in, and promote imaginative, beautiful, and creative clothing and accessories. 

My memories of growing up (outside of dancing)  are pretty much identified by the clothing I was wearing, or wanting, at any given time.

The plaid wool jumper with the rabbit fur pom poms that I insisted on wearing the first day of school, also the hottest day of the year.

The Brownie Uniform that seemed so cute until I saw the round, brown reflection in the mirror, which meant that I was a Brownie for one day.

The unattainable (at least for me) white angora sweater; a pre-requisite for membership in the very prestigious Girl's Service Club.

The intensely unattractive gold bridesmaid dress with the huge bow on the back from my brother's wedding, recycled for my Senior Ball.

The beautifully conventional handmade wedding dress I wore...

...that made me look a lot like I was graduating from a convent.