I don’t know about you, but I tend to try out looks before I wear them. It helps me dress when pressed for time. Playing dress up after putting baby to bed both relieves and prevents stress. I do this when I make a new top or bottom. Similarly, when I need to “dress up” for an occasion I like to wriggle into a few dresses, try out a few shoes and accessories to decide what feels right.
First, the blue dress of desperation. I all but finished her about a month ago, set her aside, then “lost” the pattern, meaning I can’t make a bodice lining. (note to self: CUT LININGS WHEN YOU CUT EXTERIORS!) I stashed the borrowed vintage magazine and my copy safely in a sealed folder which has since disappeared in the chaos of my sewing room.
Insult to injury, despite several weeks of searching I can not locate a white non-sandal for love or money. I hate shopping. The stores stock nude shoes of any description but no bright white heels. Surely magazines and retailers gang up on us- articles bleat on about how nude shoes lengthen legs, suddenly white shoes disappear completely in favor of what look like dirty white shoes. If you like them, consider yourself lucky you can easily find what you like. I can’t and the white shoe lacuna irritates me more than is strictly rational.
Something about the dress isn’t right. Given time to ponder, I’ll make her perfect. However, time is no longer on my side. I have my husband’s graduation and dinner tomorrow.
One of my lovely co-workers buttonholed me this morning and asked if I wanted a bridesmaid’s gown she held on to for four decades. She said I could cut it up, perhaps re-use parts of it. I never turn down free textiles, even pilly old sheets can be used for muslins.
Holy Batman. How could she imagine I’d rip this up? I look pissed because I’m focusing on getting a decent shot without a photographer. But really I’m thrilled.
Without the bow
. (Great snakes, I showed you two dresses with bows in a row)
Downside: Admittedly high-quality polyester crepe Upside: Gorgeous color.
Downside: A little snug. Upside: Beautiful vintage dress in mint condition. Downside: I can’t wear my brand-new fluffer with this skirt. Upside: I have beaded Moroccan slippers a shade darker than the dress. Downside: I don’t care to document the ghastly marriage of white silk hat with this dress.
She isn’t right, either. I might eventually trim the dress to knee length and perhaps undergo a breast reduction. Then it would be a perfect frock for the never-ending rounds of cocktail parties I attend.
Desperate, I dug into my LBD stash. Am I now three for three in the bow category?
Halter back full-skirted dress in a nice polished cotton. I found her for ten dollars several years ago. The elasticized bodice freaks me out. I trimmed the hem with wide embroidered tulle lace because she lacked character off the rack.
Upside: I can wear black shoes with her. Downside: Somehow the elastic sections make me look extra squidgy through the middle while reducing my bosoms to blisters. We can’t have that.
Upside: I can wear my newest fluffer and carry my Round The World clutch
. Downside: Still a squidgy rectangle.
Upside: I can finally wear my red brocade belt
– no more squidge. Downside: I can’t carry my Round the World clutch with this belt. I’ll settle for a quiet black thing I have lying around.
We have a winner. I need to cheat a little on the belt and pin it tighter than I made it, somehow she’s loosened up from all those months of sitting in my dresser drawer.
I’m trimming my hat with feathers and red Dior roses, I’ll beehive my hair and generally revel in über femininity. Pictures forthcoming, I realize these are of ridiculously poor quality.
As always, kind and constructive criticism welcome. I do hope I’m not the only one who plays dress-up.