I called these closet selections “1970 jumpers”
April 6th – April 10th was a period of mourning. I have to admit, this was a very hard week. I postponed my blog, as I was heartbroken with the death of my dear cousin. Coincidentally, work was tumultuous. I am accustomed to difficult situations and time pressures, but this week seemed to have it abundance. I will put all that aside, ladies and gentlemen, and I will endeavor to brighten up this blog in spite of myself.
Actually, I sometimes think that I was born with a smile on my face. Smiling seems to come naturally. You will find me smiling in pretty much every situation and regardless of my mood. No doubt, there is a psychologist out there who can explain this to me. So with my jumper plan in place, I put a smile on my face and I soldiered on.
Out came jumper number one from my slightly more spacious closet. My plan consisted of five jumpers and five turtlenecks. Like every good plan, adjustments occur. All five jumpers were primarily black. However, one of the five seemed too cheery. I abandoned that selection and substituted a more relaxed casual outfit, in black, for my Friday ensemble. Once again, I placed the worst of the lot in the middle of the week.
I was getting worried about this project. I wasn’t even halfway through my work wardrobe and my choices were getting more and more difficult. Like a good accountant, I set aside some preferred outfits for the proverbial rainy days. You will see one of those reserve items in this week’s blog. Let’s begin with Monday and I will explain the week for you.
Monday, April 6, 2015
From 1972 until 1975 I attended an all-girls Catholic school. This was an era dedicated to new styles and flower power.
Roman Catholic nuns were not fans of colour, but they did permit some flexibility with respect to uniform design. God Bless their hearts! Our brown jumpers were permitted to be worn with either a pale blue shirt or turtleneck. I recall being told that the jumper must fall to the top of the knee or below. While the uniform pattern accommodated our various shapes and sizes, the jumpers were not to be too tight. I recall mine was a little tight. I suspect that darts were considered to be the devil’s decorations, but that begs the question why Home Economics was a required subject. I remember feeling totally content, warm and cozy at school. I was happy to break the rules and wear a variety of turtleneck colours together with my stylish jumper. I loved high school!
Fast-forward to 2015. I still enjoy wearing a jumper accompanied by a turtleneck, no matter the colour. Instead of the chocolate-brown jumper of the 1970s, I have converted to the ever so reliable black or gray variety. I have not subscribed to the philosophy of orange is the new black, and I have abandoned the powder blue colour selection for my turtlenecks. Once my self-imposed ban on shopping has ended, I intend to expand my wardrobe to include many colours of turtlenecks, possibly even pale blue.
On Monday, I grabbed what has to be my most favorite jumper. It was designed for Ann Taylor. It is a size 6 petite and has a flattering hourglass shape. Not surprisingly the fabric was made from 81% polyester, 18% rayon and 1% spandex. This fabric is comfortable, soft, stretchy and warm. I love the shoulders and the neck line. Except that the zipper is in the back, it was very similar to the jumper I wore in the 1970s (the uniform zipper was in the front). Today the colour combination is grey and black, so I paired this jumper with a light grey turtleneck. The shoulders and the grey turtleneck would have been grounds for detention back in high school. I wonder is that why I’ve been working 11 hour days? Could it be latent guilt from high school?
Believe it or not, this outfit lifted my spirits on Monday and helped to energize my day. Come to think of it, I always enjoy wearing this jumper.
Tuesday, April 7, 2015
I wish I could say that I wore this precise outfit last Tuesday, but that is only partially true. While I believe in full disclosure, I will not provide the picture of that outfit as worn last week. I have no idea if it was because I felt, “down on my uppers” or because I had been working 10 to 11 hour days for three weeks, but the real picture looks so stylishly sad that I put that awful dress on one more time with another sweater and took the picture you see above. I know that must sound vain, but quite frankly I am appalled that I left the house looking as depicted in the picture you will never see. I guess we’re all entitled to such days, I am just thankful that I never knew how awful I looked at the time. Further, I would like to thank my coworkers and my family for keeping any opinion on how I looked to themselves. I owe each of that group a latte. Make that a latte with a double shot of Bailey’s!
Amusingly, without the pictures, my description of this dress would be almost equivalent to the jumper I wore on Monday. It is also of a similar basic style, it is grey and black and as requested by the Sisters of Mercy, the hem hangs just above the knee. The dress lacks the flattering cut of my Monday jumper, but it is warm, stretchy enough to wear to the gym, and soft. Ah, the gym, I really must get back to the gym!
This style easily accommodates a turtleneck, perhaps even a fisherman knit sweater. Unlike my choice on Monday, this dress was made for Coldwater Creek and is a larger size, 8 petite. While reasonably loose, it manages to show every flaw I have, bump by bump. Unlike every other item in this blog, I bought this dress over the Internet. I know myself enough to say that had I tried it on at a store, I would never have bought it.
As for the fabric, it is a combination of 67% polyester, 30% rayon and 3% spandex. No doubt the spandex gives it that stretchiness. In my opinion, that stretchy quality is lost with the loose fit of that dress. Perhaps it is intended for that rare beauty in the fashion magazine, who is so thin and fit that she could present the dress while somersaulting from one side of the studio to the other. Perhaps that’s what was missing? The owner of such a dress needs to drink much more caffeine, frequent the gym, and be best buddies with a sport/ fashion photographer.
Let’s go on to Wednesday, shall we!
Wednesday, April 8, 2015
Hump day always requires some kind of boost. The jumper, modeled above, is reserved for special occasions. The gold brocade fabric was the selling feature of this dress. The tag indicates a designer who has a distinct impish style. It depicts a young woman perfectly coiffed peeking out from behind a feather boa. The banner above the tag says,” made in NYC” and the designer is Yoana Baraschi!
I would never in a million years wear a turtleneck with his dress. While the shape and style is similar to that of the jumper, it truly does not belong in that category. In spite of its metallic character, this dress provides an inner and outer warmth. Its gold thread speaks to the richness of the fabric, and can only enhance the spirit of the person wearing it.
As for the fabric, Yoana Baraschi selected 67% open end viscose, 26% rayon and 6% spandex. The brocade was made from three separate combinations: the first combo included 42% acrylic, 23% cotton, 18% polyester, 10% wool, 2% nylon and 5% other, while the second combo included 42% cotton, 42% polyester, 13% acrylic and 3% lurex and last but not least the third combo was simply 75% rayon and 25% polyester. All I can say is that the shell of the dress provided the firm yet flexible structure that was made exquisite with the fascinating brocade. I truly do love that dress!
I have already modeled the jacket. The gold zipper design in the front panels complements this dress.
This dress speaks for itself. I feel confident, comfortable and competent whenever I wear this. It is worth your while to Google Yoana Baraschi. My challenge will be finding more of her designs!
Thursday, April 9, 2015
In spite of my pink jacket, Thursday was a profoundly sad day. My darling cousin was laid to rest. A person can only hope to be as fondly regarded as my cousin. When he walked into a room and smiled, everyone smiled back, drawn in and captivated by his presence. This man was kind, generous with his time and generous with his care. This world needed more than 49 years under the influence of this gentle man.
This dress also resembles the pattern and cut of my Monday jumper. However, that is where the comparison ends. While the picture does not do justice to the dress itself, I consider this piece to be among the most elegant dresses that I own. Something fitting for my cousin’s last day. The dress was designed by Arthur S. Levine as part of his Tahari line. The dress itself is a size 8. The fabric is heavy, the zipper is strong and metallic gold, and the accessories are firmly sewn in place. The dress is meant to be worn while standing, as if to stand on guard while being provided the honor of wearing it. While it’s required by law to provide the fabric, and care instructions in both official languages, I cannot locate the tag. Once again I must admit I love this dress.
This pink Talbots jacket is a size 6 petite. It also brags of a heavy fabric woven smartly. It complements the Tahari dress perfectly. This shell fabric is comprised of 75% acrylic and 25% cotton. While I ordinarily prefer a more tapered cut, for dresses such as this, the jacket should be understated.
Friday, April 9, 2015
Friday’s outfit is a recent purchase. It comes from a Canadian line labeled Sympli. It is the straightforward simple every day clothing line that can be worn certainly as business casual. Its appeal is fundamentally coming from its sleek cuts and its solid colors. While you can mix and match with other clothing lines, the designers present a solid case for wearing only the Sympli line for both the top and the bottom. The idea is to accentuate the ensemble with eye-catching jewelry. Regrettably, I am prone to allergic reactions to costume jewelry, and consequently am limited on the eye-catching jewelry. In this photo I am wearing a Labradorite pendant in the shape of a heart. To break out from the solid black of today’s ensemble, I added striped grey and black socks! I think it gives me the witchy woman look. As you can see, I decided to take this selfie in my kitchen, only a stone throw away from my broomstick!
Ann Taylor Jumper: Place on the watch list (showing wear)
Coldwater Creek Jumper: goodwill
Undisclosed sweater: trash heap
Yoana Baraschi dress: goodwill (notable flaw in the seam at the back of dress)
Tahari dress: Hang up and wear again
Pink blazer: Hang up and wear again
Sympli top and legging: Hang up and wear again
I have already planned the theme for next week’s fashion. Next week is dedicated to leggings!