Thursday, December 31, 2009

Well here it is, Dec 31st, back where we started. This time last year I set out a lot of big goals for myself in regards to this blog, most of which I did not accomplish. My life has not taken a dramatic turn for the better (or worse thank god), there will be no forthcoming book or movie deal (not that I would ever want such a thing). I managed to part with a few garments (though not nearly as many as my friends and family would have liked) and got reacquainted with some old favorites. I did not end up wearing every item of clothing I own - I did not really end up coming anywhere close for a variety of reasons. But none of that really matters, because somehow I was able to stick with this thing for a whole year! This time last year I was borrowing my dad's laptop and my mom's camera and couldn't imagine that I would last through February, so as far as I'm concerned making it this far (with my own recently acquired laptop and camera) is pretty damned good. Nevertheless, I set myself the limit of a year to get my clothing affairs in order and carrying on any longer than that just sort of seems a bit vain. At some point I'll probably feel the need to start blogging some new clothing related enthusiasms, but for now I think I have earned myself a nice long break. Thank you to everyone who shared a bit of the year with me. It's going to feel very strange not worrying about whether I have already worn a particular sweater or not.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Please allow me to take this moment to thank the following people for their support of me and this project for the past year:

R. (Mrs. N.)

C. (Miss B.)

My #1 friend A. (Miss C.)

S. & T. (Mr. M. & Mrs. T)

My gentleman friends (who were perhaps the biggest readers of the garment thread):

S. (Mr. C.)

E. (Mr. M.)

J. (Mr. B.)

A. (Mr. K.)

The woman who gave me half my wardrobe:

My great aunt J. (Miss Q.)

. . . and last but certainly not least, the girl who will always be better dressed than myself:

R. (Miss V.)

Thank you all for the past twelve months. Believe me when I say that none of this would have been possible without you.

My penultimate day of posting. I had a couple of options in my suitcase, but I settled on this dress of my own design. It's a bit wrinkled, but my gentleman friend convinced me that it didn't really matter with this sort of dress.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

What's going on here is that I have brought one of the unpacked suitcases I took along on holiday back in September with me on my semi-annual housesitting excursion. This sweater is from Anthropologie. I have technically worn it already, but that was on said holiday and subsequently did not get photographed. At that time, it was quite a hit with one of the Reiss salesgirls. The pants are from Uth. They were my favorites of mine at one point around 2001, but hadn't made it back to the states til this last trip. The socks are Pringle. They make some nice knee socks that I like to stock up on when I'm in the UK. I'm also wearing a cute necklace from Poppy About, but I doubt it's visible here because it kept disappearing under my sweater all day. Everything else I have already worn this year.

Monday, December 28, 2009

I almost didn't post this outfit because it is not very flattering, but since I spent the day on the couch watching an Ab Fab marathon, it didn't really matter. Believe it or not, I have actually not worn any of these rather nondescript items yet this year. The pants I bought at a yard sale and fit very well, though they have a sort of flared lower leg that I don't really care for (perhaps some altering is in order for these guys in 2010 - decent fitting pants are rather hard for me to come by without paying a fortune). I have no idea where I got the top though I think it probably belonged to my great aunt. It too doesn't fit as well as it could and I'll probably end up getting rid of it rather than taking it in. The socks were given to me by my mother.

Friday, December 25, 2009

I thought this dirndl was the perfect thing to wear for Christmas. Throughout the year I kept passing it in my closet, but couldn't quite work up the nerve to wear it to work or any other everyday sort of place. I purchased it from a booth at an international fair and though it doesn't say so anywhere on the garment, I feel very sure it's from Austria (I think perhaps it said so on the price tag). The sweater I had to borrow from my mother because I just could not lay my hands on any of my own white sweaters (this one is by Ralph Lauren). The tights are from Old Navy, a store I've only shopped at twice in my lifetime.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Please excuse my cat's rather shocking disregard for the camera, as this was the only picture I took that showed off the ornamentation at the back of my skirt. The skirt is from Topshop and the sweater from H&M. About an hour after taking this picture Mrs. T. convinced me that I should change into something warmer.

This black lace sweater is part of my haul from the new Rodarte for Target collection, which I must say left me a bit cold (the collection, not the sweater though I dare say if I were to wear it out on it's own as the salesgirl suggested, it would probably leave me a bit cold as well). Underneath we have a grey sweater from UO which I am sure will be familiar to most of you by now. And finally rounding out the top half is my Soft Cell T-shirt from Dumpster Values - probably my favorite of all the band T-shirts I've ever owned.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

It's very funny because I posted this dress on wardrobe remix to very little interest from the remix community. In the real world however, this dress was the hit of the party and received compliments from nearly everyone I spoke with that night (and was even mentioned 3 days later by a relative stranger who told me "you wore that great dress"). The dress in question is a Diesel dress that I purchased at T.K. Maxx.

I spent the day cooking and making a general mess in the kitchen, so I chose to wear this shirt which already has mysterious grease stains on it (mysterious because I'm not sure if I bought the shirt like that, yet can't remember staining it myself). I bought this shirt at Dumpster Values and I love it's colour and shaped patch pockets.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Let's call a spade a spade, shall we? I am drunk in this picture. Here you see me post party and I had already taken off my treacherous shoes when I realized that I hadn't yet snapped a photo. A little background on this outfit - I had sort of resolved that I was going to stay in on this particular night, when Mr. K. came over and convinced me that what I needed was some good drunken holiday revelry. I had been saving this Libertine for Target blouse for a fancier look involving vintage skirts and corsetry, but I was both in a hurry, and disinclined to be very fussy on this occasion so I just stayed in the jeans I had been planning to couch surf in and hit the town.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

We are now entering into the thick of the holiday season, so you will have to excuse me if my posts are a bit delayed - lots of visiting friends and family, Christmas shopping and the inevitable last minute grading that comes with the end of the semester. I'm pretty sure this dress came from my great aunt. In fact, I'll wager that she actually made this one herself. The tights I bought on my last trip to the old country. They are House of Holland and I bought them at the new (since my last visit) House of Fraser at the Victoria Centre. I must say, I was most disappointed that there was no haberdashery department in that particular store because to my knowledge Belfast is lacking a good place to buy yarns and fabrics and I once visited a wonderful yarn department at the House of Fraser in Bristol.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

At one point in my life, I decided I was going to start collecting belts. The only person who really took me seriously on this was my friend J. Because she was working at a thrift store at the time, she hooked me up with all kinds of interesting belts - most of which did not come anywhere close to fitting me. This one is no exception, in order to make it fit I have had to disregard the intended belt holes completely and use one of the decorative cut outs to cinch this belt on. The sweater is the same one I wore earlier this year. The skirt is vintage and I think it probably came from the PCC swapmeet. It's Evan Picone and has some very nice detailing at the waistline which is completely lost here since I am wearing a sweater over it.
This Built by Wendy coat is the perfect thing for a walk in the rain. I picked it up last year around this time when her Los Angeles store was going out of business. It's a medium and I secretly think it might be a bit too big for me, though my friends assure me this isn't the case. At any rate, it has dropped shoulders, so I think I can get away with it. Let me again bring your attention to my lovely Automatic Sweetheart bag made by my friend the excellent Miss V. I think everyone should go to her shop and pick up a piece for themselves or the ladies in their life.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Not a dress I know, but it has been cold and/or rainy around these parts, so I am unapologetic in my need for warmth. The sweater I found while looking for things to get rid of. The end of the year is fast approaching and since I haven't really gotten rid of quite as much of my wardrobe as I had hoped, I've been doing a bit of last minute deletions this month. I think this particular sweater belonged to my late maternal grandmother. It's 100% cashmere and has a nice WASPy blue colour, so I spared it the chop, but I do have plans to add a bit of ribbon trim around the neck. It is rather plain as is. The scarf is from H&M, but there is a bit more to it than that which you can read about below as it is one I wear quite a lot in cold weather. The hat I knit last week from some leftover chunky yarn I was trying to use up. The pattern for it is from one of the Twinkle knitting books.

Doesn't this scarf look nice with the intarsia sweater? It is one my favorites for Winter wear. It was given to me about 7 years ago by an ex-boyfriend after I had expressed a desire to go to Paris and go scarf shopping (the idea here is that the scarf says "Trés Cool" on it - French, get it). Upon presentation of this gift I, who like nothing better than a good opportunity to stick my foot in my mouth, said the first thing that popped into my head which was something to the effect of "Oh, isn't one of the members of Green Day called Tre Cool?" (??????!!!!!!!!!) thus making my ex feel rather stupid about what is easily one of the more charming and witty gifts I have ever received. It's sort of appalling how much of an ingrate I can sometimes come across as.

This is the last piece of my McQ for Target shopping spree from back in March, and just in time to go crazy at the bullseyed retailer next week when the Rodarte collection drops. Even though I basically threw my project rules out the window three months in, I'm actually pretty proud of myself for otherwise giving up Target designer collections. I passed up Tracy Feith (not really a difficult thing to do), didn't even look at what was on offer from Loomstate and most impressively I passed on Anna Sui even after trying on an absolutely gorgeous tunic blouse. This project and blog will be ending in a few short weeks, but I'm going to try even harder in 2010 to curb my shopping and enjoy the all the possibilities my current wardrobe contains (the upcoming Gaultier collection might be too much for me to help myself though). These paisley lace tights are from Dunnes which is probably one of the least fashionable stores I can think of. Still, I have picked up a small number of surprise pieces there over the years.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

So, I've been clearing out the back reaches of my closet the last few days and I came across this skirt which had fallen off it's hanger. The skirt was given to me by my old boss who at the time was a bit of a vintage clothing addict. I had arrived at work one day in a particularly despondent mood and when the boss returned from wherever she had been, she brought this to cheer me up. I suppose I should point out that I was the only employee at this particular business and I was pretty frequently being paid in goods rather than actual money. Nevertheless, it was a particularly sweet thing to do. The shirt is from Muji. I wish we had a proper Muji store out here. I do so love their understated basics.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Here I am showing off the incredibly strange hemline of this thrift store dress. It's basically two large rectangles of fabric attached to the side seams. When this dress is in motion, it swirls around in a manner that is a sight to behold. Of course as soon as I set foot outside the house, it became pretty apparent that my legs were going to freeze, so I ended up putting on some leggings for the purpose of running errands.

Another skirt and top combination and another pair of sparkly tights. This is my "Ice Princess" look. The skirt is from Benetton. I think I paid £4 for it. You may remember this coat from earlier in the year. Most people thought that the faux fur collar was attached, but it is actually a rather chintzy looking bolero from UO that I'm wearing underneath.

Friday, December 4, 2009

I know this is not technically a dress, but while digging through the back corners of my closet looking for long forgotten dresses, I came across this top. What it was doing on a hanger instead of folded in a dresser drawer I'm not entirely sure, but that will be remedied from here on out. I got this shirt back in high school at a rummage sale. The rest of the outfit has been worn previously this year.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

I don't generally wear long skirts these days and I think it's a bit disorienting for everyone I know, myself included, when I do put one on (my dad said "So what's this?" when he saw me). Even though this is not a particularly glamorous dress (it's a polyester tricot), I nevertheless felt incredibly statuesque and regal whilst out running errands in it. I can only attribute this to the length. My old band mate J. gave me this dress back in high school. I can't imagine her ever wearing it, as she was about 5'2 and had a sort Betty Page thing going on. In my teenage years, I used to wear this with Converse Allstars.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Well, it's now the last month of my year long experiment. Recently in conversation with R. I complained that I haven't really had the opportunity to wear any of my cocktail and formal wear, so we hit upon the idea of making December dress month. Back in college I used to get dressed up in ballgowns just to do the grocery shopping, a habit I have sadly fallen out of. So, to kick off the month, I have here a dress that is neither formal nor cocktail, but one that I love nonetheless. I bought it last year at a thrift store and only this week got around to sewing the necessary buttons back on (yes, I can be incredibly lazy about doing things like hemming skirts and sewing on buttons). The tights are Look from London tights that I bought off the Free People website. I love almost anything with a peacock feather on it, so naturally I had to have these. It's a bit of a shame that the skirt hem interferes with the top of the design.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Sometimes in my mess of a bedroom, I'll find two garments laying on top of each other that I would never have thought to combine. That's how I came up with this outfit. The blouse is from Topshop and needs some bra strap holders sewn in as the front and the back are both cut very low and it has a tendency to slip off my shoulders. Because of this, I haven't worn this top as much as I would've like to. The dress is actually my 8th grade graduation dress bought for me by my mom at some mall department store (the label is Rampage). This dress has gotten a lot of wear over the years. In 10th grade I mistakenly used it as the basis of a 1940's look I was trying for a big holiday party. I had even interviewed my great aunt on hair and makeup of the day with no luck.
(Me: What sort of makeup did you guys wear in the 40's?
Aunt: I don't think you need to be wearing much makeup at your age)

I wish I had pictures available of that night, because my look is so not 40's it's laughable. The socks are from Hansel from Basel. I'm not entirely sure they work here, but it was a bit too cold to go without them, and I also just wasn't feeling the whole bare knee thing today. The necklace is Automatic Sweetheart (who by the way will be out selling her wares along with many other fine artisans at the Unique Los Angeles Holiday show this weekend).

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Does anyone remember losing this blazer at the Jabberjaw in the Spring of 1997? If so, let me know and I will happily return it to you. Around that time, I was in a band that played there quite frequently and one night after a show we found this in the video game room. Since it fit me so well and since no one was around to claim it, I put it on and wore it home with the blessings of the Jabberjaw "staff". The truth is that I'm not all that crazy about this blazer. I think the lapels are waaaay too big for me and the colour is a bit too teenaged goth. The problem is that it fits so perfectly that every time I talk about getting rid of it someone talks me out of it. Today, for example, I horrified my mother by telling her I was going to donate it.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Here I am forcibly removing my cat from the picture. If she wants to start her own blog, that's fine with me, but she'll have to take her own pictures. This dress was given to my mom by one of her fashion history students (she usually made them write a paper on an item of vintage clothing, and I guess the student didn't want to keep this particular piece). She passed it along to me this year when she was scaling down her collection. I posted a better picture of the outfit on the Wardrobe Remix Flickr pool which you can check out here.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

I always gravitate towards pants in the Wintertime, which is a bit of a shame because I own so many lovely dresses and warm tights. This dress I bought at Jet Rag (though not at their $1 parking lot sale). At the moment all the buttons are being held on by safety pins, so it looks like a bit of mending will be on the agenda for this weekend. I realized after putting together this outfit, that a belted dress might not be the most practical look for Thanksgiving dinner, but I fared alright.

I was so excited when I reached into the pockets of this jacket and found a money clip I had presumed stolen over ten years ago and a tube of lipstick gone MIA. This means that the last time I wore this coat was Halloween 1998 when I dressed as a sort of mod cat girl. The coat is from a Pomona thrift store and cost about $16 - a small fortune for me back in high school.

The contents of the pockets

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Okay, so rules are meant to be broken right? And here I am breaking one of my cardinal rules of fashion by wearing boot cut jeans with wedges . . . and denim wedges at that!!! I got these shoes at the liquidation sale of the Built By Wendy Los Angeles store and thought they would suit a denim on denim 70's flared sort of look. Please note: this is the closest to bell bottoms you will ever see me wearing. The jacket is vintage and I'm pretty sure I bought it at Dumpster Values during my college days.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Okay, so these past two days I've been embracing the squalor of semi-unemployment and have worn the same sweater two days in a row (!!!!). I should probably just get rid of this sweater, and would have done so long before now if it were a hand-me-down or thrift store purchase. But sadly this is not the case - I actually spent something like $25 on this top back in high school (a fortune for the 16 year old me, and even now an amount I would have to seriously consider before dropping on an impulse buy). I have such an aversion to sending such clothes to the Goodwill, so I tried to give it to my mother who turned it down saying the colours made her look "like death warmed over". I guess I will be holding onto this for awhile longer til I can find someone who really loves it. Any takers?

This is Monday's incarnation of the sweater. Today I left it loose, rolled the sleeves up a bit and added a scarf (actually it's this sweater) and rain boots.

On Sunday, I pinned up the back to give it a tighter fit around the hips and paired it with my current favorite Free People boots and a necklace of my late grandmother's.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

This hooded sweater from a little shop in Askøy Norway where I spent Christmas 2000. I can't remember the name of the store, but I imagine it doesn't exist anymore. It was kind of cheap, slightly depressing and located in something akin to a strip mall.

These shoes from Urban Outfitters are a bit insane. I can't wear them for long stretches of time . . . yet, but I am practicing. The jacket is from Anthropologie.

As you can see, my cat T. is a bit of a diva and always wants in on a photo opportunity. The faux Chanel jacket is actually BCBG by way of Marshall's.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

This is the outfit I chose for a night out at the American Legion Hall. The shirt is from a Pomona thrift store. I love the slightly Art Nouveau flower pattern on it. You can get a better look at the shirt (and a not so great look at me) here.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Here I am channelling Marty Mcfly. My mom bought this for me (second hand) years ago when I used to do a lot of backpacking. I kept seeing it peeking out of my closet and decided that today was the day to take it out and make a decision on whether to keep it or not. I must say that even though it is not the most fashionable thing I own, it is so incredibly cozy . . . and then "Back to the Future" came on TV and it seemed like a sign.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

I call this my "Beatles dress" because many years ago I wore it to a Beatles themed party my roommates and I threw. I got it at rummage sale back in high school and shortened it from knee length to this much more flattering hemline. (I think it could probably do with some adjusting to the side seams as well as it's a bit sack like).

Friday, November 13, 2009

I love old 40's and 50's camp jackets. Sadly this one is missing half of it's buttons. I can't remember where I bought it, but I would venture to say that a proper vintage shop probably wouldn't sell an item quite as worn as this one is, so it was most likely found at a thrift store.

Isn't the label adorable?