For a while now I've been wanting to post de-frumping tips on Fridays but I haven't hit upon a suitable title. Anti-frump Friday? Frump-free Fridays? Nothing is grabbing me yet but here's a little tip all the same.
A few months into the chaos called "newborn twins" I realized I was beginning to count the months, not merely the weeks or days, that I'd spent in schlumpy clothes. I discussed it in a post about why I blog
back in September. As my babies have been turning into bonafide toddlers (how is that possible?) I was noticing that it was still awfully easy to stay in my workout clothes, long after the workout was done. That I was reaching for the lounge pants instead of any of my other, just-as-comfortable, better-looking clothes.
The thought process was that I didn't want to dirty my nicer duds, to spread kid-schmatza on clothes I wanted to "keep nice." But I ALWAYS feel better about myself on days I "get dressed." When I catch my reflection in the mirror and I see the pulled-together wife and mom instead of the drained and dragging one. I ALWAYS accomplish more because that little happy feeling that comes from looking good radiates through my whole day. But I also get grouchy if a top I particularly like gets creamed, literally, by the kids.So as I began pulling out my nicer clothes more frequently, I also started regularly employing a handy little schmatza-deflecting device. My apron.
Now you may have planned to first employ a daily apron at this stage of your life.
But there's not a darn thing wrong with channeling your inner Donna Reed!
This is how I tap into mine.
And I grant you, there are occasions when I wish I had put on a Hazmat suit to deal with certain messes. But no clothing has been damaged beyond what a little washing can't take care of.
The days of saying, "I'll be able to dress nice again when the kids are older." are long gone.
A simple Google of "retro aprons" yields untold numbers of options.
The following are just a drop in the bucket.
And none of these apron designers have any clue who I am.
Jessie Steele aprons are adorable.
I can see this one during the Thanksgiving and Christmas seasons. It's even called "Mrs. Claus."
These with the cute lapels are also feminine and fun!
Whether your bent runs to the the straight-laced bistro style or an over the top cupcake and ruffle adorned frill-fest, just grab yourself an apron and end the excuses for truly getting dressed each day.
There is a lot more fall/winter fashion discussion in the works, but I thought it would be fun on this Monday to do a little perusing in one of my favorite catalogs. Last year we had fun looking at customized cupcake cars
and this year's catalog is a bit of a retrospective.
2010 marks the 50th anniversary of the extraordinary His & Hers gifts that Stanley Marcus challenged his team to devise every year.
The first out-of-the-ordinary gifts offered were his and hers airplanes. And there is such a lot of amusement to be had within the pages of this year's book!
(click the book to view the catalog)
- In 1964 you could get a pair of camel's flown in for $100,000
- In 1976 a pair of buffalo calves for $11,750
- In 1983 a pair of Shar-Pei puppies for $7750
- In 2010 there's a gorgeous Alexander McQueen dress for $5,135. There's definitely something wrong with the price of that dress!
A few of the options this year? You can get His/Hers MetroShip Luxury Houseboats for $250,000.
A Tory Burch Family Chariot Trike for $4500!
A Gingerbread Playhouse that's actually edible for $15,000 from Dylan's Candy Bar. That's Ralph Lauren's daughter.
Or maybe for a cool $1,500,000 you'd prefer Dale Chihuly to transform your pool into a work of art?
I adore Chihuly's glass sculptures. The symphony hall in our city has a bright red one that's fantastic.
The flip side of yesterday's feminine coin is of course, menswear!
I've always been a fan of suits for women (we can use the individual pieces much easier than our male counterparts!) but that's not the only way to interpret the "trend."
As with the full skirts - I don't think menswear ever really goes out of style.
One of the easiest way to incorporate menswear is with tailored details.
Think sharp shoulders and lapels.
This would be great with a lace camisole!
Keep the fit close (not baggy) to prevent looking like you raided your husbands closet.
And a boxy shape never really flattered anyone.
Although stealing his white shirt or his belt to "tie" around your waist is fine! For a great translation of this trend try your best jeans with one of your husbands white shirts under a fitted vest and a great pair of heels. Or, if the shirt is quite large on you, leave it unbuttoned and wear it like a wrap shirt over an embellished camisole (belt firmly or tuck it in to keep the shirt from coming unwrapped and flapping free.)
It's easy to bring a little menswear to your wardrobe with your outerwear.
I love that they kept the model's hair and heels feminine. I'm not a fan of looking too androgynous. Slicked back hair, manly shoes, and no makeup just doesn't work for me. But wearing oxfords with a cute plaid skirt would be brilliant!
Combining the masculine and feminine elements makes the look.
Lace with pinstripes.
Sharp tailoring with a soft blouse.
A full suit with a sparkly clutch.
This isn't the first time fashion has resurrected Annie Hall and it won't be the last.
Have fun with it!
We're back to our regularly scheduled programming - discussing the Fall Trends! Here are the promised designer takes on the full skirts. Be prepared to be bombarded with lots of inspirational photos!
There were tons of iterations on the fall runways but my favorite was Louis Vuitton.
Marc Jacobs' interpretation didn't just call to me but grabbed me and said, "Wear me. Looooove me."
He did wonderful, wearable plaids. I adore plaid.And his shoes were so fantastic! (We'll be talking about the fall shoes next week.)As I mentioned in my post last week about full skirts I already have, I'll be making a few circle skirts and plaid is most definitely on the list.
And the brilliant man translated the full skirt into LEATHER! That is sumptuous creamy leather you're looking at. How fantastic is that?
Here's another leather stunner.
And those gloves! I did not buy a pair of opera length gloves from Talbots last year and I still regret it.
How about a menswear pinstripe? Love it!
And I REALLY love the handbags.
I always choose structured bags over slouchy/Hobo-style bags.
Important style notes!1. The full skirt should NOT hit above the knee. That would translate to prom.2. The waist should hit at your waist, not sit low on your hips, otherwise you'll lose the whole hour-glass effect.3. Keep the top slim fitting to balance the fullness on the bottom. Remember - fashion is a matter of proportions.4. The full skirt can be worn loose or given a little structure and extra fullness with a crinoline/petticoat. Don't fear the crinoline!5. If you're over 50, pair the skirt with a modern top, shoes and accessories to avoid the "Poor thing, she's living in the past." look. A plain, fitted t-shirt, denim jacket or shrunken blazer will work perfect.
A few other offerings. From Prada.
The full skirt can be part of a dress as well!
From Paul Smith.
Love the sheer overlay! My toddlers would destroy it but I still love it!
From Luisa Beccaria.
The skirt can be tiered for a little more fun.
And lest you think this trend is "new", here are just a few shots from Donna Karan's SPRING 2008 and this years resort show.
She had lots of wonderful full skirts two years ago!
Like I said last week, for anyone wanting to dress classic and feminine, the full skirt never goes out of style.
I really love the extra wide waistbands!
Graphic prints work well even with all the volume.
Another graphic print with a lovely lacy top. Fabulous styling.
Love the ethereal touch from the sheer material. I am envisioning a sheer skirt like this over a contrasting layer.
Hope you enjoyed that look at some lovely femininity! And I hope you give the full skirts a fair shake. Try one and you just might fall in love like I did.
I know I forecasted a look at designer takes on the full-skirt trend but today is my five year anniversary and I'm off to have a fantastic day with the love of my life.
Thank you for marrying me, Mr. Darcy!
Thank you for making me a wife and mother. For our three beautiful daughters who shriek,"Daddy! Daddy! Daddy!" the moment they hear the garage door.
For always making me smile, and laugh, and cry (in the best way!)
To be able to spend eternity with my best friend is gift never to be squandered.
Here's a little peek at what we were doing 5 years ago at this same time.
This is the first picture of me I've ever posted!
Whew! It's been a busy week and my style blogging has suffered. There's a plethora of information coming your way in the next few days but since we ticked over into October over the weekend, there's something very important we need to attend to.
The Holiday Sweater Oath.
Or more aptly put, the ANTI-Holiday Sweater Oath.
So click the ugly sweater below and take the pledge!!
Holiday Sweater Oath