I don’t think I’ve ever advised you to buy only things that you absolutely love and see a clear and immediate use for. I’ve never subscribed to that philosophy. It’s OK periodically to buy something on the basis of a vague idea or because it meets a need tolerably well. The problems arise when the majority of your purchases inspire only lukewarm feelings and have no clear purpose.
I bought this dress at JCrew shortly after Christmas because it fit me very well, I sort of liked it, and it was deeply discounted.
Would you like to know why it’s ok to buy something that you don’t love upon first sight?
Because sometimes your initial assessment is wrong. And you subsequently realize that the dress you thought was so-so is actually beautiful and useful. Like this one.
I can justify my initial tepid response.
First, I wasn’t sure about what season this dress was intended for. I bought it on deep discount in late December, but it’s not a winter dress. I now see that it will be best in the spring — the cobalt and ivory lines — but would also work well in early fall.
Second, I wasn’t sure about the color scheme: black field with ivory, cobalt, and cocoa brown lines. Hmmmmmmm.
Third, I wasn’t sure about how the lines on the dress — like lines of longitude — would work on my rounded self.
This last concern was particularly unfounded. Look at how beautifully the lines drape around my torso and hips. It looks like a two-dimensional model of a space-time manifold molded by gravity.
This dress is lovely, but so preppy that it almost hurts. It needs some corrective gestures to make it chic. Any ideas?
These large pearls are strung on a bulky metal chain that combines silver links and gold fastenings. The pendant is smoky quartz surrounded by pave diamonds.
The smoky quartz picks up the cocoa brown and persuades me that the color scheme is actually kind of genius.
What else? Any other ideas?
Yes! A denim jacket.
Any traditional denim jacket — the style Levi’s calls Trucker — would work, but I like this slightly cropped silhouette.
I also love the frayed edges.
A denim jacket works well with a dress like this if it is either shaped at the waist or cropped above or at the natural waist.
Anything else? We’re on a roll.
Instead of a black bag, my glossy blue tote.
Finishing things off, my purposefully mismatched shoes.
Although The Photographer is generally forbidden from including cars in our photos —
which is hard when we photograph on the sidewalks in our neighborhood —
I made an exception today when we saw a car that matched the cobalt lines in my dress.
And now, a couple of random things that might bring a little joy to your week.
- For those interested in the eaglets that hatched at the National Arboretum at the end of March: DC-4’s little leg got stuck in a y-shaped branch woven into the nest. Oh no! When it became apparent that neither he nor his mother (First Lady) could free his leg, an arborist climbed up, untangled him, tucked him in a sack, whisked him off to the vet, and brought him back 12 hours later. I am sure that the eagles believe that this was an alien abduction — high-speed transport, bright lights, probes — but everyone seems to be just fine 48 hours later. You can see the Eagle Cam footage here.
- If you do not know Timo the Cat (a Ragdoll from the Netherlands), allow me to introduce you. I suggest you start with the koi pond. You will be in love in less than five minutes.
Dress: JCrew; Jacket: Marques Almeida; Bag: Coach Poppy Tote; Shoes: Tory Burch;
Necklace: David Yurman
Note the traffic lights in the distance, which The Photographer has blurred beautifully by using a short focal length — a bokeh effect.