It’s actually kind of amazing—given the amount of time I’ve spent in close proximity to people with extremely good style—how deeply clueless I manage to look so much of the time. You’d laugh if you saw me yesterday: my outfit started out with a pair of shorts quite similar to these:
…and things proceeded quite rapidly downhill from there. In some ways, I can’t bring myself to care: if there’s any time of year to try and get away with throwing on whatever’s nearest and cleanest, it’s now. Especially given that my current daytime dress code is more about putting together ensembles that work for a wifi cafe/dog run-circuit life than a sleekified office-to-evening work-function-type of situation.
Lately, however, I’ve been having a number of grown-up-style lunches and meetings, and I have felt the need—even the desire—to step things up. I’ve got plenty of nice dresses from when I worked in an office, but none of them feel right anymore. To me, certain articles of clothing are as evocative of a time and a place as some songs or scents can be. And when I put these dresses on, all I can think of are consumer marketing meetings, lunches at my desk, midtown traffic and a life I no longer lead.
I’m hoping I’ll get over it eventually, because a few of those dresses are really nice. Meanwhile, I have a very simple dream. I want a I lighter-than-anything dark dress in a classic—but interestingly cut—shape. Like this silk shirtdress, perhaps. Shirtdresses are often too preppy for me, but this one has such an excellent slouchiness about it.
And then I want to take that classic-but-interestingly-cut dress and throw on a belt on it, the way women have been throwing belts on dresses for decades, but I never have. This is kind of a headline for me, the whole belting dresses thing. Somehow the time feels right.
I like the idea of this Aztec print belt with the shirtdress. Nice and tactile, and a playful contrast to the whole preppy menswear-ish thing.
And this big old classic J Crew belt feels like it would be just the thing if I were ever going to attempt one of those soft/hard looks and pair it with a pretty floral dress or something.
I can’t bear to wear skinny belts: they always make me feel so thick. Something like this makes me feel all feminine and wispy. And it’s not too wide, which is a whole different kind of bummer.