Monday, 30 August 2010

comfortable favourites

Alas, I am having no end of trouble with getting new contacts: my eye appointment isn't for nearly two months. I am Not Pleased. It means you'll be seeing a lot more of my spectacles, which I wouldn't mind so much if they weren't slightly crooked and always sliding down my nose or tilting sideways and giving me brow-furrowing headaches. Also it is about to be Autumn: and how am I supposed to float about in black lace gothic novel heroine outfits with horn-rimmed spectacles on?! I am hoping that something miraculous can be worked out sooner than expected. 

But anyway: today it is not remotely autumnal -- in fact a bit humid -- and I am keeping comfortable in cosy favourites. The shirt I will forever think of as my Willow Rosenberg shirt; I grabbed it immediately because it reminded me so much of things Willow wears on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, especially around season four. Plus it is pretty, quirky, and soft, and I love the pointed hem. The skirt was a clearance-rack snag a month or so ago, as I'd been looking everywhere for a simple, pretty, solid-coloured short skirt I could wear with t-shirts and things. 

Awesome owl earrings are awesome, yes. I'm not usually drawn to gigantic earrings, but: they are owls! And they were a dollar (!!!), and are not very heavy, and make a pleasing soft jingling when I move my head, like personal windchimes. 

And my boots! They are L.L. Bean, and very sturdy and comfortable as well as being appealing in a sort of 20th-century British novel heroine way. Also waterproof, which is important, as the last time I was confronted by copious rain and mud, I walked about in high-heeled goth boots, having nothing better. 

shirt, boots // thrifted
earrings // Rue21
necklace // Kyra
skirt // Bonton

Sunday, 29 August 2010

three for the price of one

Lounging on the bed this very afternoon.

Being sick, oddly enough, causes me to shamble about in absolutely nothing photo-worthy. It also makes me want to kill people to alleviate the boredom. But anyway. I am all better now, and here is something of a spam to make up for the long stretch of no posting.

An old favourite skirt (especially for the advent of autumn; I have happy memories of traipsing all over the place clad in it and granny boots the last few years), pretty new shoes: soft and simple. Later I wrapped my pashmina scarf over my head and pulled on a grey wool puffed-sleeve blazer when I had to run errands in the rain, but alas! no pictures.

I was starting to feel rather icky by the time I took this, so ignore, uh, my face? I wore my wool blazer again and somehow managed to still miss getting photographic evidence of it -- I bought it at the Goodwill warehouse sale and have been waiting half the summer to be able to wear it. The blouse is an old favourite (thrifted, of course) that fell behind the drawer and got lost for months, only recently surfacing.

I really, really love these gloves (from Rue21 last year), and have been missing them all summer. I also really enjoy wearing my skull-and-crossbones ring with otherwise sophisticated or very feminine outfits.

The new shoes! Walmart clearance rack. I know, they are not very good quality, but they are quite comfortable (and were VERY CHEAP), and the combination of purple and the little gold buttons holding down wee flags of material made for an item irresistible to a bargain-sniffing me.

The other thing I did pretty much the day before I got really sick was dye my hair. Though I used the same shade I've been using, it turned out a great deal vivider than I had intended; fortunately I quite like it. (Though I would love to find a shade similar but more candy apple than tomato.) 

Wednesday, 18 August 2010

dreaming of september

It always seems to come halfway through August: the autumn-longing. Autumn is My Time: we belong to each other. My blood gets a sort of quickening, and I begin wearing sweaters before it is even very cold. 

I think it must be because of certain aspects of summer ending -- people going off to school, mainly, and the occasional almost-cold breeze -- that my anticipation of autumn has been very strong to-day. Also I have been reading a lot of magicky fantasy novels (well, I am always doing that). So I am as witchy and autumny in dress as the weather will permit. Also I went roller-skating with my sister and a lot of her friends (earbuds firmly in ears to a) fend off the GIGGLING PRETEENS HELP and b) to fend off the horrible pop music they always play with Benny Goodman and Florence + the Machine and Amanda Palmer and Patrick Wolf and things), which is why I wore stockings at all. 

This is a slight variation on an old favourite outfit -- I have had the dress and blouse for ages, though before I got my Very Useful Belts I had a sort of underbust waistcoat I would wear with it, as the dress bunches a little in the waist and needs to be cinched. 

dress, blouse, boots // thrifted
stockings // Walmart (where I generally buy my basic black, cream, and grey stockings; these are a bit holey, which is why I took them skating)
belt // Rue21
bow, ring // Claire's (a dollar, huzzah!)

Tuesday, 17 August 2010

you put me in the magic position, darling

Have been a bit busy, making merry and giving summer its last proper hurrah, before my dear friend Sarah goes off to college and the weather turns wicked (and wonderful: autumn is my favourite). We had an evening picnic, star-watched and cloud-watched, shared good conversation and utter silliness, and spent Monday at Kennywood, being giddily childish in the way only an amusement park can make one.

The last time I went to an amusement park, I did in fact wear a skirt, but I actually found a pair of walking shorts at the bottom of my closet, which I believe my mother thrifted for me during a chillier season and I had since forgotten. I am still hoping to find a pair of proper shorts, ones which a) fit, b) actually cover enough of my body, and c) are quirky enough to suit me -- a simple pair of denim cut-offs isn't going to appeal to me any more than ordinary blue jeans. (I really want something high-waisted with buttons, but thus far NO LUCK.) 

I am, however, extremely pleased with my Alice in Wonderland t-shirt.

shirt // Claire's (on clearance for $5: patience wins out!)
trousers, shoes, suspenders // thrifted
cameo ring // Rue 21
necklace // thrifted from Value Village in Anchorage
bag // thrifted ages ago; a stand-in until I get a proper one with pockets and things.

I did actually order The New Satchel from Forever21, and it arrived this morning, but alas! -- the zipper is defective, so I must send it back to be exchanged. Sob. Sob. I want pockets!

Tuesday, 10 August 2010

festival finery

I have returned from my merry weekend in Dublin, Ohio, wherein I waltzed most of my troubles away (although actually my dancing tends towards a weird combination of Irish step dancing, tap, and interpretive dance, with a little clubbing style thrown in for the heck of it... and as of yet I have not managed to succeed at waltzing). Festivals are one of the few times in my current life where I get to dress to be seen -- which I suppose makes me look a bit awkward amongst half the people who come garbed in anything that will keep the heat away, but I don't look overly amiss, either, which is nice after sticking out so much at home.

Because I am Very Stubborn, I managed to get outfit pictures just for you lot, too! 

DAY ONE: I am gothy. Dad, bless him, does not look at me funny even once. We have extremely spicy kung pao chicken for dinner and lovely lovely lovely plum wine, and then head off to the festival after setting up camp. I dance to a punk-ish band and impress a lot of young people, one of whom bows to me. Clearly my empire is underway.

(yes, this is me almost asleep in the car -- though not quite as I am TAKING PICTURES OF MY HEAD.)

Hogwarts shirt (!!!!!!!!!) // Kyra/Hot Topic
tulle skirt // thrifted, originally from Target (WHY DON'T WE HAAAVE ONE)
bodice and hat and shoes // thrifted
stripey thigh-highs // Rue 21 clearance rack
lovely little hair bits I've been trying to incorporate FOREVER // Kyra
I also wore my long black lace gloves much of the time after we arrived at the festival.

DAY TWO: I do a lot of dancing & buy a few shinies and eat fish and chips and watch my favourite band since I was eleven tear up the stage with their sheer force of awesome. (Solas is especially great for me because they keep releasing albums, and so while some songs reach back to my pre-teen memories, others are heavy with the field I used to wander in our old house in the woods, or sitting in a car with my family and Kyra, or dancing out by the water at the city park.) Things happen involving cellos and me going utterly slack with sheer enjoyment. Also I get so caught up in a book that I read during some sets until I am finished.

dress // Ross Dress For Less, five dollars from a clearance rack
bodice // thrifted
parasol // Ebay, about seven dollars (it's fake silk & real bamboo)
scarf and peacock feathers // Kyra
shoes // thrifted

See, this is the sort of outfit I can mostly only wear to a music festival. The embroidered scarf, definitely. My parents gave it to me for my birthday, having bought it from a vendor at Merlefest in North Carolina who was selling beautiful handmade items from some South Asian and African countries. My parents are fantastic, yes! The little coins jingle against each other and it is made for dancing, but mostly I hang it over my bed because it is too lovely to fold up in a drawer when not in use.

And the scarf Kyra had her sister fetch me in Turkey, when she was on a school-sponsored trip. It's pashmina -- I was admiring a similar one in a sort of hippie boutique but it was some terrifying price and Kyra went, hey, I saw those in Turkey for seven dollars; I shall get you one when my sister goes. I love it terribly.

The parasol I definitely did buy for music festivals -- I bought it right before Stanfest in Nova Scotia last year, which was THE WORST IDEA EVER; clearly the weather gods were in hysterics over me and my naiveté, as it was cold and rainy and muddy all weekend, being NOVA SCOTIA and all. I took it to Merlefest in April, though, where it served with honour and kept the sun (hisssss the yellow face we hates it precious) off me and my stubbornly cultivated semi-pallor.

DAY THREE: We attend the end of a U2-inspired church service. I watch my favourite band again and fall further in love with their accordion player and his beautiful singing voice. Two different bands have us sing "Wild Mountain Thyme" with them, which nearly makes me cry, as it is one of those old songs that reaches deep into my heart and forgotten corners of my childhood. We wander about a tenth-century Irish village; I pet a dead bear and blow a horn rather like the Horn of Gondor (& now I want one). Dad buys antique sheet music for his mother and his wife ( mother; I mean, just so we're clear). Songs about the Troubles break my heart; songs about folklore send it somewhere fey and fiery. 

dress and blouse and leather loafers // thrifted
belt // Rue21
you can't see my pretty key necklace and cameo -- alas!
flower circlet // bought at the festival: I couldn't resist! 

In conclusion: I did not wear a single pair of impractical shoes this week. Go me! And now to bed; I am terrifyingly sleepy.

Thursday, 5 August 2010

i try to be casual

Tomorrow I am running away to the Dublin Irish Festival in Ohio (there's a Dublin there, okay), where I shall see several of my favourite bands and waltz about in pretty dresses and hide from the sun under my parasol (yes I have one and yes I bought it for this express purpose!) and try very hard not to bring any high-heeled boots. (I've done this before. I always regret it, and always end up packing another pair. When will I learn?) Today, then, was a day for rushing about and errands and planning (some of said planning rather terrifying), and I was anticipating having to bicycle, hence the TROUSERS, but Dad was going to the same places, so I didn't after all. Anyway. 

You can also see, sort of, that I've put a great black streak in my hair, to satisfy my immense need to have punk hair at folk music festivals. I'd have taken clearer pictures, but the sun was setting, alack. 

trousers, shirts, and shoes // thrifted (all recently but the yellow blouse)
owl earrings // Rue 21 (on clearance for a dollar!)
ampersand necklace and hair bow // Kyra

Wednesday, 4 August 2010

at least i like my clothes

Today was Not A Good Day, so I am rather glad that I dressed well this morning to fortify myself for unpleasantness to come. One nice thing, however, is that I had my first go at tea-dyeing today: Kyra sent me some gorgeous white lace gloves for my birthday in June, but I prefer off-white to white, and they were clashing with my favourite little white dress, so I steeped them for a while and now they are perfect. 

The dress is something you are sure to see more of here: it is incredibly versatile and I love it so. A little white dress is even more useful and necessary than the traditional little black one, I think. 

As it is raining something glorious (thank you, lovely storm), I was forced to take my pictures inside; do forgive the excess blur.

dress // Goodwill, several years ago
beaded shrug // thrifted yesterday; originally from Rue 21
stockings // Ross Dress For Less
boots /// Goodwill
beaded necklace // Goodwill
cameo necklace // pendant from Michael's (Blue Moon Beads, I believe); chain borrowed from another necklace
earrings // Kyra

Monday, 2 August 2010

a dress in waiting

Hello, I hope you haven't forgotten me; I promise I haven't forgotten you! Only I just got a job (after searching for a year!), and have therefore been rather busy... jobbing. And while I used to have fun dressing for work at my last job, this job requires me to wear an oversized t-shirt proclaiming that YOU CAN'T BEAT OUR MEAT, and a baseball cap with a similar motto. (I am also irritated that the cap and shirt do not actually match.) Also trousers. EVERY DAY. My first day of work I came home and rebelliously threw on a favourite dress, but the next day I was too tired to do anything but replace my dreadful work t-shirt (at least it's a pleasing burgundy?) with a prettier one. I have been wearing sensible, faultless, yet awesome stompy boots every day, so that's something. I have also taken to wearing a great deal more eyeliner than I do on a typical day (especially when it isn't autumn; my gothic streak expands ridiculously come the first sign of crisp winds), as it is one of the few ways I can present myself as an ~individual. It isn't about feeling pretty so much as it is about feeling like myself; I need to have talismans of appearance about me. 

Anyway my fashion sense has been sort of flatlined this last week, though I shall soon have ACTUAL PROPER MONEY which is very exciting (first on the list of essential purchases: some books, some underwear, and a replacement for my trusty satchel, which is currently held together by duct tape, safety pins, and hope). 


I bought a lovely dress at Goodwill last week: one of those dresses that you start out laughing at because it's so typical of its era or so outrageous in its quirkiness, and then you realise that you are actually madly in love with it. 

(I swear it isn't just because it very much resembles the dress Veronica Mars wears to the 80's themed dance in season one. I SWEAR. Also I lie.) 

I tried it on, and it looks brilliant, really; it fits me exactly, and as I happened to be wearing black stockings and granny boots at the time I cut a very fine figure. But one of the many, many downsides to living in a dull small town in the middle of nowhere in particular is that I have no idea when I shall get to wear it -- outside of photo shoots and waltzes in front of my bedroom mirror. (Perhaps I should put it on & prowl the graveyard!) I have several formal or at least Very Nice dresses hanging in my closet which I have barely worn because I haven't anywhere to wear them to, so I end up over-dressing to attend plays at the community theatre, or, well... that's really the most elegant-dress event I can think of, really. I want to go to operas and plays and ridiculous costume parties! But instead I hang dresses on the corners of doors and daydream. 

And on the subject of daydreaming, I have been wistfully pretending that the profusion of wildflowers on my desk are from a secret admirer -- or perhaps a not-so-very-secret one -- instead of something friends were selling at the local farmer's market and gave to my mother (and thus, there being far too many to fit in one vase, she in turn gave half of them to me).