Hearts are always red

(last post about colors, for a while)
- wearing all one color is fun, especially if it's something besides black, which is fine, but not quite as interesting to go monochrome with. all white, red, etc. i like.
- wearing two colors, however, feels a bit too tidy for me. it's too safe.
- yesterday, three colors (that includes my bag and shoes) was perfect .
1, 3, or a busy colorful pattern are my favorites.

how many colors are you most comfortable wearing at a time?

Necessity is the mother

when shopping, do you typically find that every possible/desirable option is presented? or do you sometimes wish, if only this came in another color...

which color do you most often wish an item were available in, but it frequently is not?

what colors would you like to see offered more for:
- shoes
- dresses
- sweaters

if you could invent a new color - what would it be?

Stats and static

according to the june smart money, tupperware brands "has amassed an army of 2.1 million 'consultants' who launch a party, on average, every 2.5 seconds." wow.

we're approaching the 6th month. nearly at the half-year mark. so far i've bought 5 pieces of clothing (or, on average, 1 item per month). a year or 2 ago, that amount would have been triple maybe.

people do change. the other day, not only did i, an arachnophobe, let a sizable spider live after we crossed paths in the kitchen, i also named it and narrated it's journey as it made it's way to my bathroom.

on the other hand, so far this year i've probably spent just as much money (albeit on fewer itmes) as i have in the past.

so people don't always change that much.

and when the spider decided to suddenly bypass the bathroom, what i thought was a tolerable destination, in favor of exploring around the bedroom and ultimately came over to my side of the bed, i had to squeeze my eyes shut and implore my taller half not to tell me where it went next, so that i could just pretend it didn't exist, and wouldn't be creeped out by its proximity (when i opened my eyes, it was mercifully gone).*

how many items have you bought so far (just counting clothing, not shoes or accessories)?

willing to venture a prediction on how many more purchases you will make in the second half?

also in the magazine was an interview with shopping mall mogul david simon. in this piece i learned that, in the US, there are roughly 20 square feet of retail space, per capita. that's considered a lot, by the way. in "other markets" (vague, but that's all he said), it's 2-3 square feet per capita.

(if you're in the US, and putting aside the weak dollar - we're strictly talking about options, variety, quality, etc.), for all that space, would you say that shopping in your area is 10 times better than shopping... "in other markets?" europe? asia?

for what it's worth, only 1 person listed a US city as the top pick for a dream shopping destination in a previous post.

*update - "lorna" made a shocking reappearance mid-shower, at eye-level. i knew knew knew the bathroom was her goal. knew it! (for once, not so great to be right.)

"Just when you think you're out"

i had given up on t-shirts and made my peace with it. i have 3 or 4 that i wear under things, like dresses, or under sweaters in the winter, but i never just wear a tee, so i would say they are low on my list of necessities, and certainly never a staple (am i a freak?). it's a combination of never finding one that fit quite right (too tight in the body, too high of a neck, too low of a neck, too wide in the shoulders, too boxy) and...no, that's all, just not finding the right fit, that's my basic beef with the tee.

i was looking around online saturday night and saw this tee. they only had one up in white, actually, so it wasn't really this specific one. the dropped shoulders and extra seam for shape at the shoulder held my attention just long enough to get the thing stuck in my head. then sunday morning i looked again and they had added a navy and a black. i put in my order for the black.

i thought i was beyond this, but rittenhouse has pulled me back in with this possibly (it's en route) perfect tee - that and a wicked combo of boredom and busy-ness (counterintuitive, i know, but that's how i operate) that got me poking around where i oughtn't.
blame it maybe on summer plans of casual days and some travel and the unarguable ease that a tee promises (though in my history, it doesn't deliver). maybe this one won't make me feel like i ought to be washing a car. it's a balance of simplicity and definite design, which i think could describe most everything i'm drawn to. i'm imagining the black fading with each wash until it becomes my own customized shade of greyish greeny grey that black always fades out to.
am i setting myself up for disappointment?

if you have a bad history with an item of clothing, are you fated to do without, or is there always hope?


how can i resist getting drawn to things i've sworn off of? anyone?


name one thing you would add or subtract here (you can't do both).

Simplest terms

iconoclast - One who attacks and seeks to overthrow traditional or popular ideas or institutions.

icon - An important and enduring symbol; a person or thing regarded as a symbol of a belief or cultural movement.

which is more your style? (icon or iconoclast)

Free falling

i have a complaint about free samples. specifically, cosmetics. i can't condition my hair with the amount in a typical tiny sample tube. i can't adequately "apply liberally" to half my hair with a sample tube (and i don't have that much hair). you can't judge a product from one application of something that promises to "show visible improvements" to teeth,skin,nails,etc. "after one-week [of use]."
sadly, free samples don't work to hook me, most of the time.
let me ask you, if you received a free sock in the mail, would you be inclined to buy the matching sock to complete the pair?

is there a way that free samples could work with fashion?

Cup of tea

fashion shows, good.
inspired fashion spreads, goood.
inspiring street style, gooood.
met's costume institute ball, eh.
i'll admit it. i cannot muster much interest in the ball (or the exhibit). i didn't lose any sleep over my apathy, but i did have an "ah-HA" moment when i read my hero lynn yaeger's piece on it.

any fashion cultural events that you find lackluster?

Sex sells

the other day i was going past the shop of a major american designer. i noticed wording on the windows and for some reason stepped closer to read. it was identification of a distinct antique item in the window, used as a prop for the larger fashion display. it listed the object and proprietor of it, presumably as public acknowledgment/publicity in exchange for the loan. in each window - there were half a dozen or more along the store front - this was repeated for a particular prop.

for whom was this relationship more beneficial? the fashion designer, who was able to create a particular display as well as underscore an equation between the clothes and these aspirational items, or the actual guardian of the items (i can't recall specifics but they all seemed to come from various shops/galleries), who had an opportunity to get the pieces out of storage and in front of a larger-than-usual audience.

how often are you attracted to collateral bait (in editorials, ads, windows, catalogs, etc.)?

Making the grade

it's midweek, how'd you do so far?
right now, from head-to-toe, what would you give yourself? A? B?
"E" for effort at least?


1. do you think that suits suppress style, or simplify life?
2. do you think uniforms are restrictive, or equalizers?
3. the idea/reality of a casual/creative work environment - fantastic or frightening?

All together now

some days we need a little more help than others. my best fashion friends are woolite dark and oxi-clean, and my washing machine. but occasions do occur where it would be wise to call in the professionals. tailor, dry cleaner, shoe repair are the basics.

do you have a trusted team?

Foreign relations

1. if someone were asked to guess where you were from, based on your style,
a. where would they guess, b. would they be right?

2. if you could pick any city in the world to do a day of shopping, where would you go?

3. if you could have a fashion pen pal anywhere in the world, where would you want him/her to live?

So close

growing up, i never had crushes on the singer/star du jour. i wasted my formative years mooning over boys one row over in class. always someone accessible and real. their appeal was never weakened by the possibility of attaining them - that was their appeal. and certainly the implausibility of a successful touring musician landing in my lap was part of their lack of appeal.

fashion you lust after - is it usually "in your wildest dreams" or "oooooo, so close you can almost taste it"?

Either or

you only have 2 choices, so pick one (and nope, no wiggle room).

would you rather:

1. pay in full your wardrobe budget for the year up front, on a prepaid credit card, and then throughout the following 12 months buy your items exclusively using that credit card, with the amount you put on it. zero additional money.


2. throughout the year, choose and own/wear new clothing as you select them, paying nothing, and then after 12 months of owning/using the items, pay for them, whatever the total is. no returns.

Ushering in

despite the reality of global warming, some of us are very old-school about seasons. they have their time and place. it's hard for us to adapt to change, to think about weather in less rigid terms. and so, with the arrival of "Spring" comes the shift in mentality and and wardrobe. light, cool, breezy is supposed to define the weather, the mood, and the outfit. though if the first one doesn't cooperate, you stand there freezing your breezy butt off in the blistery cold. and come september, following a merciless august, well, i'm ready for wool. i want thick tights. i want hats. i want boots and i want to stop sweating. i want to wear my sweaters without having to turn up the a/c to do so. i always try to rush fall. that's the weather i'm always waiting for, eagerly anticipating. sometimes i jump the gun. sometimes i have to wait, and wait, and wait, until november.

which season do you try to usher in a little prematurely?

Life happens

decisions, decisions. some people like a lot of lead-up time before having to make one, and some (of us) prefer acting in an impulsive second. when an invitation comes in the mail (or over the phone) though, the mind can't help but wander over, in advance, to the sartorial choices for the occasion, whether the event is hours, days or months away.

if you got invitations today for all of the following, do you have something in your existing wardrobe that you could wear to each? any that you're not prepared for?

- formal wedding
- funeral
- surprise birthday at an elegant restaurant
- high school reunion
- job interview
- romantic picnic

Fa fa fa fa fashion

for the love of me, i could not find a video for costello's "green shirt."
But you tease, and you flirt
And you shine all the buttons on your green shirt

i tried.

it started yesterday in the market with Romeo in black jeans.
that got me looking.
my mom offered nancy.

throw some fashion songs at me.

In hot pursuit

used to get dropped off at the mall (in my youth) with $20 in hand (easily-earned, untaxed babysitting money), only to be collected again 3 or 4 hours later with very little to show for it. maybe the occasional accessory, but lunch and a few snacks always munched up my money.

now i shop from home about 80% of the time via the internet. and i won't argue that it takes its toll in the form of shipping, but still, time-wise and even cost-wise, it can't be beat. i don't pay extra for transportation and i can forage in the kitchen if my blood sugar drops, though since i am using almost zero energy, the trusty basal metabolic rate gets no help from my "activity" and my energy reserve, therefore, is barely taxed (i do type at a respectable 70wpm, but that is of little use when a cc has a mere 15 or 16 numbers on it). oh, and tax! - sites/companies that are out-of-state, and have no in-state branches, don't charge me any tax.

with the us average for gas at $3.61 per gallon right now, the act of shopping can be hard on the wallet even before you fall in love with the jeanstopdresssweaterjacket that is just so perfect.
for me, a typical shopping day in the real world easily munches up my $20 again.

on average, how much does the act of shopping cost you, in collateral expenditures?


i have a mental block with makeup. either i was brainwashed by my mom, or i am genetically predisposed to agree with her that everyone looks better without makeup. they don't - that's a fact that i, as a rational human being, recognize. but when i even contemplate some polish, i am aware of the criticism i heard growing up, and that which i have since internalized, whether my mom is at home, 3,000 miles away, or right here visiting. tomorrow i will attempt to wear eyeliner, which i've been psyching myself up for lately, even though it will solicit a tsk tsk from her. i can't believe that at my age, i am still struggling with the influence/approval of a parent. i guess no matter your age, you're always someone's child.

did any adult figure in your childhood dispense style advice or opinions? did they stick or did they bounce?


Isabella Rossellini, born June 18, 1952
independent, beautiful.

Daily dose

on a scale of 1-5, how healthy is your style?
(1 is healthy, 5 is not)

1. shoes, if a birkenstock is a 1, and a stiletto is a 5, yours are a __
2. tops, if a t-shirt is a 1, and a corset is a 5, yours is a __
3. bottoms, if an elastic-waist skirt is a 1, and apc jeans (tight!) are a 5, yours is a __
4. bags, if a light backpack (worn double strap) is a 1, and a heavy, loaded leather bag is a 5, yours is a __
5. makeup, if plain spf 30 is a 1, and the full face of cake is a 5, yours is a __
6. underwear, if cotton is a 1, and nylon is a 5, yours is a __
7. shopping habits, if zero debt is a 1, and a cc balance is a 5, yours is a __
8. hair, if wash-and-go is a 1, and daily use of at least 2 heating appliances is a 5, yours is a __

what's your total?


name one thing you would add or subtract here (you can't do both).

Looking forward

for the consumer, clothing is a game of wait and see. you wait and see what styles come out. you wait and see what your stores will carry. you wait and see what fits.

taking a less passive role today, list what you would like to see next, what details or tailoring would you choose to see emphasized:

1. which color would you like to see?
2. what (skirt/dress) hem length would you like to see?
3. what dress shape would you like to see?
4. what skirt shape would you like to see?
5. what pant fit would you like to see?
6. what type of shoe would you like to see?
7. what shirt/top shape would you like to see?
8. what accessory would you like to see?

Love is blind

sure, clothing is, among other things, a tactile experience. i'm drawn to beautiful material, and i like to feel comfortable in what i'm wearing, but first and foremost, it's a visual thing. that's how i first am attracted to something.
it's how i recognize that something is (or is not) "me."

if you lost your vision at this point in your life, after dealing with the bigger issues that would need to be addressed, how would you adapt your style?*

And in particular, how would you choose new clothes?

*this is just another question to generate thoughts about style and choices, and in no way means to make light of the serious issue that is vision impairment. (but let's face it, a person still has to get dressed.)