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Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Going Fashion Blind

I'm not a fashionista.  I once thought I was but I gave that up about the time I started wearing spit-up as a fashion accessory.  I don't completely ignore the trends - after mocking, despising, and boycotting skinny jeans, I finally gave in and bought a pair this year.  I got my brown riding boots last fall.  And my chunky jewelry the year before.  Which is, of course, a signal that all of those things can now go out of fashion.

It doesn't help that I don't live in the US and so can't observe the fashion trends firsthand.  I got all of my chunky necklaces in Cairo, where they've been wearing those for years and years.  So I still can't tell if they're American cute, Cairene cute, or some strange mix that is cute only in my mind.  It doesn't give me any peace of mind that the only compliment I've gotten on them has been from an American friend - who lived in Cairo with me.

So when all of the local ladies brought out their dresses this spring, I started noticing them.  They looked so comfortable and so nice at the same time.  And then I looked online and found that all of the American stores were carrying dresses too.  I had to search a little harder to find dresses that were long enough, with sleeves, but thankfully I'm short so most dresses are long enough.  I found some at Target, some at J.Crew and then stumbled onto the Boden website, having had a recommendation from an acquaintance.

I knew that my dressed from J.Crew and Target were probably going to pass the US fashion police's muster, but Boden is a company from the UK.  Was it going to be okay to add a third fashion influence to my already confused brain?  I added a few dresses I liked to my shopping bag.  Unable to commit, however, I left the window open and left to fold the laundry.  I pictured myself in various dresses, wondering if I would look nice, or if I was just seeing too many local ladies in loudly patterned polyester for my own good.  I came back.  I couldn't decide.  I thought about asking Brandon, and then thought better of it.

After a week of agonizing, I finally just decided to buy what I wanted and if anything I could be 'unique.'

The boxes came three or four weeks later and I put on a fashion show for Brandon.  Some I was sure of and those I showed him first.  He probably didn't care, but said that they looked nice.  He wasn't sure of the next one, but conceded that if I thought it was okay, it probably would work but it wasn't his favorite.  And then I pulled out the last.

He gave me a funny look, and then started laughing "You look like you've been vandalized by the sixties!!  Orange?!  And flowers!?  I think I saw my grandma wearing that twenty years ago!"

Defensive, I told him that it was too late, the dress was here and wasn't going to be sent back through the pouch to be returned.

And so I have to ask, you of those who are living in the US, which one is it?  Cute?  Or vandalized by the sixties?


Sarah Flib said...

I like it! And so does Madeline, for what that's worth. I can't really tell what the material is like, and that could make a difference in whether or not it looks good in person, but I like it in the picture.

Also Madeline wants me to tell you that we are reading a Mrs. Piggle Wiggle book that is really funny.

Bridget said...

I like it, but my fashion sense is just as skewed as yours.

Anonymous said...


Pixie K said...

Long time reader but new commentator - my rule is if I love it but my husband is ambivalent, I keep it. If I am ambivalent and he is not enthusiastic, i return it.

I personally like the shape and pattern - its cute!

Hihankara said...

It is a great classic cut which is universally flattering. With a retro look. So you really get points for both - WIN!

PaulaJean said...

OK, my fashion sense is skewed by being old, being around other senior LDS missionaries, and by living in Bogotá, where the predominate fashion statement is a mid-thigh very tight black skirt, black tights, impossibly exuberant high heels, worn by an equally impossibly thin young woman.

I like your dress better.

UnkaDave said...

Yeah, I keep trying to get your mother to dress like a Bogotana.... sigh.

Latter-day Guy said...

It does look sixties-ish, but I'm not sure that's a liability; some great fashion came out of the sixties. Tell Brandon he's just jealous that he couldn't pull this look off.

Bfiles said...

boden is very big in the US right now! And our Embassy is crazy about it too. I agree w others- it is retro, but definitely cute.