Encore, Encore

One of the nice things about a new job is that all of your old clothes start over when they are placed in a new setting. They feel new.


I woke last week, however, and felt totally stymied.  As you know, I have a lot of difficulty getting dressed in the morning if I have not decided what to wear the night before. In the evening, the decision takes two to three minutes tops. But when facing the closet in the early light of day — which is often quite dark because I get up before The Photographer and don’t turn on the lights — it’s like staring into an existential void. I see nothingness.

You look in your closets stuffed with beautiful clothes and conclude there is nothing to wear?

Did you actually say “I have nothing to wear?
I did!

Nothing to wear?
Nothing but The Spring Dresses

After a few minutes of blank staring, I realized that I did indeed have plenty of things to wear: The Spring Dresses! I have a few dresses that are perfect for the in-between weeks. Some have long sleeves, but are made of very lightweight fabrics (like this red dress) and others are made of heavier fabrics with short sleeves or no sleeves. This group is only in service for a month in the spring and a month in the fall (and not all of them work equally well in both seasons), so it’s chop-chop. Got to get them out and about when the weather report says daytime high between 62-70 degrees (overnight low in the high 40s/low 50s).

This red dress can read spring or fall

Dress is 2x as fun with this belt and these sneakers; maybe 4x as fun


I think I bought this dress in 2016? That’s when you last saw it. I’ve gained a few pounds in the intervening years, but the cut is very forgiving. It’s smart to buy some clothes in styles that provide a little leeway for weight fluctuations.

In order to make the dress feel fresh, I paired it with a shiny tortoise-shell patterned belt and leopard print sneakers. This combination is so much better than the black belt and low-block heels I showed in 2016. It’s more fun and the brown tones in the belt and sneakers work better with the chocolate browns and tans in the dress.


Last week was a good time to trot out this dress, too — also paired with a different belt and shoes.

I think this dress looks much better today than it did in 2022. Not sure if that is a belief supported by objective facts or a perception based on wishful thinking? 

Rapture Toile, remember?  No people boating, frolicking here

I think these shoes need to meet The Trash Bag 


Everything looks better with these slides. That’s 100 %fact, 0% delusion. And perhaps the black belt is better than the gold one?

Whatever the reason, I’ve gone from liking this dress (shrug?) to loving it. And, as reported in 2022, laundering this dress is easy as pie. It can go in the washing machine (inside out, in a lingerie bag) and will line dry in two hours. Perhaps this dress will go abroad with me some day. I don’t think it can be wrinkled.


When The Photographer was snapping this photo, I was extolling the virtues of my shoes.

“These shoes elevate everything they approach,” I said

Markets only work when they are transparent!



As he clicked away, I became more animated. I look like I am talking about something important, but it’s still the shoes.

Red dress: MSGM (a splurge from Matches Fashion in 2016); Toile dress: H&M ($39.99)

Note: Matches Fashion has gone into the British Equivalent of Chapter 11. I am concerned about this. According to the New York Times, Matches Fashion launched its online luxury boutique with excellent curation (I remember being astonished at the excellent taste and styling when I first stumbled upon the site); overstocked with too much merchandise to entice more online shoppers (I do sort of remember thinking at some point that they were offering a mind-boggling amount of stuff); engaged in intense mark-downs and offered liberal return and shipping policies to compete with designers who had launched their own online shops (I benefitted from those mark-downs and shipping benefits and thusly sewed the seeds of my own sorrow?), and; the model collapsed. Oh no. Is it possible that the Internet is going to take back the world of possibilities that came with Matches Fashion and similar online retailers? What are the implications for Yoox? And The RealReal? They’re part of a system. Obviously this is not my biggest worry for 2024, but . . .


5 thoughts on “Encore, Encore”

  1. So mortified was The Photographer to read that his wife was dressing in the dark that he leapt up and…replaced the batteries in the push-button lights he had installed in The Directrice’s closets TEN YEARS AGO. Problem solved!

  2. This is dressing! You’re convincing me that dresses are the way to go when the weather is fickle. You paired the red one with sneakers/ jean jacket and this has got me thinking… I’m looking at the clothing I have with new eyes.

  3. I was watching a reel on Instagram from a woman who was extolling the virtues of not looking like you just picked your outfit up off the floor of the closet. As a working Mother of two I used to seek out dresses that could spend their non-worn lives crumpled on the floor of the closet and magically lose their crumples as I picked them up and put them on to start a new day.
    It’s not just about being a diligent ironer and hanger-upper, it’s about picking the right dress out. Every closet needs a few dresses like yours, even if your travels are only to work.


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