Archive for the 'getting dressed' Category

where's your Bozo line?

“Anything Pink Rocks,” an article in the March 26th New Yorker, profiles Jimmy Webb, the now legendary Trash and Vaudeville salesman. Apart from being delightful, Jimmy has some great things to say about getting dressed. I liked this one sentiment in particular:

“Dressing is all about the whole look. If one thing stands out, you’re a beautiful coat walking down the street, or a pair of pants on the subway. With everything on, even if the elements are different from each other, it blends. You can’t cross that line to Bozo, though. You must never cross the Bozo line.”

I think we all have our own personal Bozo lines– for some, that means mixing patterns or bright colors; for me, it generally trips me at jewelry.

How about you? Where’s your Bozo line?

rain or shine

This morning, faced with the prospect of getting dressed to head out for brunch, I was having issues. The early morning’s downpour was followed by seemingly clear skies, and I didn’t know whether to reach for rubber boots or my less moisture-friendly leather ballet flats.

I strive to be properly dressed for all occasions, and all weather. This means I’m a forecast-checker: you won’t find me ruining suede boots on a rainy day. But who wants to clomp around in wellies when it’s sunny? It looks stupid, and rubber isn’t exactly breathable (= some very sweaty socks).

Unfortunately, it wasn’t until this afternoon when I clomped into Opening Ceremony that I happened upon these lovelies, a gift from the God of Versatile Footwear:
Melissa ultragirl felted rubber flat
Do you see these flats, by Melissa? They’re rubber, but felted rubber so they look velvety, not like a tire. Plus, the peep toe means they breathe!

And I can breathe easy when the clouds roll in.

The Melissa ultragirl flats (available in red, pink and black) are being reordered by Opening Ceremony and should be in the store in a couple of weeks. Call for more details.

the wonders of the nude shoe!

In 2002, J. Crew made the perfect skimmer, an utterly iconic pointy leather flat. Do you remember it? It gave you the slightest bit of toe cleavage (which, if you ask me, is way sexier than the décolleté kind). Most people snatched them up in black, but they also came in a buttery tan, like this:
j crew tan flat
Way back then, I ordered these shoes (hilariously now selling on eBay for around $10), and, in a fit of buyer’s remorse, returned them. I’ve often thought of them, the J. Crew flats that got away, and would routinely mutter Homer’s “DOH!” as I tried on an outfit that begged for the refined lack-of-distraction that the nude shoe is uniquely capable of providing.

Oh, the nude shoe. I call it ‘nude’ because it’s kind of like those awful flesh-toned stockings we once actually considered wearing, the ones that were supposed to be the next best thing to being bare-legged. Well, you know how sometimes you put on an outfit, and you like it so much better when you’re in your bare feet? Nude shoes are barely there; they’re the next best thing to being barefoot. Except that they’re pretty classy, too—unlike those flesh-toned stockings, and unlike flip-flops, which basically are bare feet (and there ain’t nothing classy about the soiled soles of your feet after flip-flopping around this sooty city of ours). Nude shoes kind of blend in, let an outfit—especially one that’s particularly expressive in terms of color and/or pattern—speak for itself, but class it up a bunch, too.

I’m no longer mourning the loss of my J. Crew flats. Here’s the nude shoe that I held on to:
nude roberto del carlo heels
Taller, a bit more beige, and excellent, wouldn’t you say?

Do you have a nude shoe? If not, I just saw this great pair of deliciously casual Repetto ballet flats at Otto Tootsi Plohound on West Broadway…
repetto nude flat
A ballet flat but better. Don’t you love the gold accent at the heel?

the power in not falling back

Hey, you!

Yes, you.

I know you. You’re the fall-back girl. You fall back on brands and trends, so every time I see you, I recognize every individual thing you’re wearing. I mean, I can dissect your outfit like a middle school science class worm, name the designer, brand and price of each and every item. Oh don’t worry—I know there’s not a knock-off on you, and of course you paid retail for every last thing.

Yes, fall-back girl, I know you and I’m mad at you. You spent good money on pricey and uninteresting clothes! Look, I don’t mean to get all psychological on you, but I think I know why you did it. Suze Orman would call you a “money pod.” Dalton Conley, an NYU professor of Sociology, says in relation to how people dress, “The real issue is not money itself, but the power money gives you.” It’s a power thing, see—but may I venture to say that you’re missing the real power available to you and your abundant clothing fund?

Look at this lady here:
the height of style
Now clearly she’s talented with this getting-dressed business. But really—she’s mesmerizing, isn’t she? Aside from the Gucci tote (a fall-back status bag, yes, but let’s forgive her that, shall we?), her clothes are a delicious mystery. I want to feast my eyes on her outfit for hours. I want to interrogate her about the origins of every single element, from her shoes to her bold-print jacket.

Now that, my friend, is power. Quit falling back and go get yourself some.

(Want to see more NYC style shots? Check out threadmettle sightings on flickr.)