Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Cheap...not always a bargain

I bought a red plaid shirt dress at H&M. I thought it looked cute when I bought it. I got a nice brown leather belt and wore it with my dark brown leather uggs with the wooden heel (I love them!) Unfortunately, this dress is pretty much a representation of what I paid for it. The collar is very flimsy. I guess I could starch it, but it's really just a pretty cheap dress. Oh well. It was uncomfortable to wear today. I was lucky that it was a cold day today so I threw a long ivory wool coat over it when I went out and covered it up. Coats are great disguises!!

I had a zipper break on my black and white dress (from the toy store picture). I didn't really love that dress either. I'm glad that we're down to the last 11 days! I'm running out of things to wear!! I'm still shopping for great dresses. I do have some favorites that I'm sure I'll be wearing through January and February (not every day). I think I'll always be slightly 'on the lookout' for good dresses and I do mean good as in quality. I think that if I ever catch myself saying..."Hey this dress is cute and it's so cheap", I'll have to remember the plaid shirt dress from H&M...Yes, it is cheap,meaning that it can only be worn once or twice before it falls apart or looks terrible. A very wise woman once told me that ..."even the poorest of people can not afford to wear cheap clothes"
I do sort of envy those dresses that the vintage housewife wore. They were fitted at the waist...not the hips or the rib cage and they just sort of looked well made. Maybe I'll try to find one to wear on my last day...although I was thinking of prancing around in a really big pink sparkly prom gown for the last day..Imagine seeing me walk the dogs in THAT!!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

My Old Friend Victoria

I have learned a lot in the past 18 days of dress wearing. One of the most important lessons that I have taken with me thus far is in regards to the unmentionables...Yes, I'm talking about underwear. Poorly fit undergarmenbts can ruin a dress. They can ruin the way it looks and the way it feels.

The two things that I hate most about wearing dresses are; bra straps falling off my shoulders and stockings rolling at the waist. These two problems are like fingernails on a chalkboard to me, an itch that I can't reach, annoying! Apparently if your undergarments are a proper fit, these problems go away...Go Figure!

Ater a few days in dresses and dressing rooms I couldn't help but notice that I was in need of an undergarment makeover. To avoid 30 days of discomfort, I decided to make this investment in myself and take my problem to the professionals....Victoria. My kids quickly ditched me as I wandered into Victoria's Secret. I did feel a little strange going in there to shop. Why? I shop there. Well, I used to shop there. When did I stop shopping there? I bobbed and weaved through the body glitter and the tutu's to the back of the store. Ok, I guess there are quite a few items that I would not use in that store. Why are there so many guys in there? Finally, I got to the grown up section (it's in the back). And...long story short...I bought a very expensive bra. It was worth every penny. Wow, I did not realize the impact of modern technology on the womens linngiere industry! The proper fit was remarkable. It changed my posture, the way I held my shoulders and (ahem) a few other things seemed much ummmm......younger? The dresses fit better. Everything fit better. I have not had a single strap fall off my shoulder! Proper fit is everything to comfort and fashion...EVERYTHING.

I have found that fact holds true with stockings and tights as well. I had been guessing on my size for a while now. I suppose that I have been just grabbing some stockings at Wegmans and throwing them in the cart with the milk. That was a mistake. The rolling at the waist can also be solved with a proper fit.

So, I learned that proper fitting undergarments are a necessity, or, I re- learned it. I used to know that. When did I forget that? A lightbulb has been replaced in my life. I did not realize that it had gone out! Once again the dresses have shown me that I have put myself on the back burner. It's OK. I know that I have put my children and my family ahead of myself. I want them to be my top priority, but it's a little unnerving to see some of the little things that I have let go without realizing it. I'm not planning on running out and opening an account at Victoria's Secret (or re-opening it), but I will not fall back into ill fitting undergarments again..that's for sure! I will be less of a stranger to my old friend Victoria. Maybe I'll pay a visit to my family on the front burner sometimes too, or maybe there's room there for all of us.

This experience in dress wearing has been a real eye opener. I have been surprized by the things that have come to light because of it. It puts a smile on my face to think of the things that I am learning about myself and my priorities. I am glad that I am doing this....it's fun. Sorry....no photos with this post!!LOL.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Sweater Dresses

I am always on the lookout for more dresses. I like the new sweater dress trend! They are soft and comfortable and they look nice. I only have one sweater dress, but I love it. I like that I can wear it casually with flats or flat boots or I can dress it up with a belt and some heels. I have had my eye out for another one..something in ivory would be cool.
I must admit that I was busted in my workout clothes on Thursday. My next door neighbor busted me in my front yard. I had come from a morning kickboxing class and stopped to chat with my neighbor on my way in to the house...BUSTED! I cleaned up and put on my dress for Thanksgiving..I'm still committed to seeing if this can be done.
I can't believe that my little experiment is more than half over! I was looking in my pants drawer this morning and thinking that I don't miss my jeans at all. I really thought that I would, but I truly do not. I think that I will not rush to grab a pair of jeans to dress up when I go out in the future. I will definately be keeping dresses in my wardrobe. Hopefully a nice ivory sweater dress!
Happy Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Born Again Fashionista

I have officially re-joined the fashion rat race. I am constantly looking at clothes. I am getting very excited about shoes and earrings and all that goes with it. I think I am having a born again experience I am finding that I WANT things. I WANT clothes and shoes that I see in the store. The temptation is really amusing. I am having a lot of fun with it, but am working at remaining a responsable consumer. I do run a household of 4 children, a husband, 2 cats and 2 dogs..I have other priorities (my mall mantra). It's as if I have untapped this fountain of girlishness within me that was dormant for a while. Like I said before, I was never a total wreck. I always tried to look nice, it has always been important to me to look presentable at my childrens school and out on the town..but I somehow went from loving clothes and fashion to just trying to look neat and somehow not totally un-fashionable. Most of my clothing choices in the past year or two have been based on whether or not they make me look fat. I am now interested in it all. I am surprized at myself. I am surprized that I had let go of this part of my life, this hobby or interest, or whatever you would call it, without noticing. I think that this experiment has given me a couple of years of my youth back.
Thanks, dresses. I did not expect this. I know that this is something positive that I will be taking away from this experiment.

Now, I am off to see Little Women with my daughters!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Simply Dressed

I have found that getting dressed in the morning is a lot easier when I know I'm just going to be throwing on a dress. A dress is one article of clothing. My morning rarely involves standing in front of the mirror changing tops and belts and boots over and over again. I can be dressed and out the door pretty quickly. I am enjoying that part of the daily dress experience. It seems like I am actually putting less effort into my clothing than I used to. But, because of the formality, I think that one would assume that I have put much more time into it. I'm getting more for less. Isn't that a good thing?

My husband teases me when we go out because I usually change several times before leaving. I will put something on and say, "Do you like this?" and he will say,"it doesn't matter because you're not going to wear it anyway." I know that he is right. I will change my sweater or my jeans or my jewelry over and over again until I am happy. I don't do that with a dress. I just put the dress on and go. I look in the mirror and it looks the same way that it looked in the store when I bought it. I put on the shoes that go with the dress. I do my hair and makeup as I usually do, and I'm done. Maybe there is something beneficial to this lifestyle change. Maybe it's actually easier to wear a dress every day than it is to mix and match outfits.

Could that be why those busy housewives in the 50's wore dresses, to make their lives easier?

I have concluded at this point that it is definately worthwhile to have a dress at the ready in the closet and I am sure that I will keep a few on hand after this experiment ends. Possibly more than just a few if Marshall's keeps up the good work! I will be looking for dresses that look good with boots or flats because, although I do not mind wearing heeels, my lifestyle was not made for heels every day. I'm starting to feel like it wasn't meant for sweats and jeans every day either.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Packaged With Love....from Mom

I was thinking about Christmas, as we probably all are right about now. I was thinking about how my mom wraps all of her gifts. She buys beautiful paper. She makes her own bows. She adds silver bells and gold angels to the tops of the presents. She color coordinates multiple gifts....yeah..you're getting it. It looks like an ad for Macy's by the time she's done with it. She wraps all of her gifts this way..the socks, the underwear, the plain black turtleneck, the batteries that she gets me for use in the kids toys (that I forgot to pick up). Sometimes the best part of the gift is seeing how much love and attention went into wrapping it. I've thought..You didn't have to go to all this trouble for me. I think I've even said that before...but still she does, every time.
If you're lucky enough to have a wrapper in your family you know how awesome it is to get a gift from them. The wrapping and the obvious love and care that goes into it is a big part of the gift. When you get a gift from my mom, you're going to take a minute to admire it and say to your self (or to her) Wow, Thanks! It's a gesture. She is thinking about you and she wants you to know that she cares.

What does that have to do with dresses??

It's all packaging. I am putting dresses on every day, not for the office, not for a party...for my family. I am thinking of them as I get dressed and pick out my dresses. I am thinking about how this small show of respect to them will help them, bother them or affect them at all. I am hopeful that they will see this as a small gesture of love, a sign to them that they are important to me...a small gift, a 30 day hug..if nothing else.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

My Favorite Dress - in short (mini)

Well...here it is, My Favorite Dress. I picked it up the other day ay Lord and Taylor. I figured I needed something to wear for the Holidays. What? Not Everything that I buy has to be a total bargain! Right?
I am going to a fashion show tonight. Maybe I'll find another great dress! Seriously...is that all I ever think about?
I'm going to be brief tonight because it was a rather uneventful day. Highlights from today included my making the quick change for kickboxing class and getting back into the dress. I got a great big smile from an old man at Wegmans today. Oh, and I saw my husband for exactly 1 hour today..it seems strange to get all dressed up and not see him. I wonder why that is?
I am sorting my thoughts on a very important topic...underwear. I have learned a lot about underwear lately, and how important it is to have the right wares for the job. I will be blogging shortly on underwear...hmmm...what should I call it...underwear exposed?