In Marni We Trust

In January, when COVID-19 was just a speck on the horizon, I spent some time (truthfully, only a few minutes) jotting down ideas for spring and summer posts. I did not imagine that I would not actually be wearing these outfits to work.

One idea was to rejuvenate a couple of my dresses — in the sense of making them feel youthful, not to make them new — that I feared might veer toward serious or matronly.
The first dress is this beautiful floral, rendered as lifelike as any botanist’s sketch in vivid colors. When I bought it, I assumed that it would be clear that, despite the flowers and ruffles, I was wearing it in a modern manner.
A modern floral!

Subsequently, I worried that the modernity would not be obvious to all witnesses and made a plan for communicating more effectively.
What is more effective at changing the tone of a dress than a belt?
Nothing. Except possibly a leather jacket.

Enter the Marni utility belt in slate grey!
The color of this belt creates little contrast against the grey field of the dress, but the material, stitching, and grommets are all high contrast, conferring an appealing degree of toughness on an otherwise feminine (but modern!) dress.
I knew this belt would be very useful.
This belt goes with everything

Come closer and take a look.

An old favorite
For those who are curious, I’ve included a close-up of this very old Kate Spade bag. I love these bags, which came in red, green, and black in several different shapes and sizes. I wonder why they’ve never been (to my knowledge) re-issued.

Moving on! This post is about a belt and here it is with the second dress.
This outfit is a lot of black. Perhaps too much. But I like the idea of a filmy black blouse under this plisse slip dress. The grey belt breaks up the column of black.
Do I look like a witch?

If so, a chic witch
Q: Is that an art thief in the background?

In an effort to keep up with my jewelry-wearing pledge, I added a necklace.
I think it works, and that the jot of color is a good idea, but am happy to hear your views.
I love necklaces made of semi-precious stones and minerals. The only drawback to them is that they are sometimes very heavy.
Is the necklace too much or just right?

This piece is very light, made of small jade beads (I think they’re jade) with a labradorite pendant. The pendant pulls the strand down to a point, which is very effective with round necklines.
This green is very refreshing; I bought it with summer in mind, but want to wear it all the time*

Although I understand that plain white flour is hard to find in stores right now, I decided that I should use 2 cups of our supply (which is less than 5 lbs.) to make lemon bars today. It seemed like the right choice. I hope I don’t eat all of them myself.** Have you been baking? What is the least sensible, or most unexpected, thing that you’ve made? And, did it make you very happy?
Grey Dress: Mikael Aghal; Black dress: Vince; Belt: Marni from YOOX; Necklace: Tabandeh DC; Shoes: JCrew
* I also want to stuff it in my mouth.
** If the last two batches of brownies that I made are any indicator, it is very likely that I will eat most of these myself. The Photographer does not have a ravenous sweet-tooth.

10 thoughts on “In Marni We Trust”

  1. Belts — How timely. Yesterday, I engaged in my first shopping expedition (online of course) since the pandemic began. I’ve always been in awe of how the Directrice uses necklaces and belts to enliven outfits. Try as I might, I cannot overcome a seemingly psychological barrier to wearing necklaces. Yesterday, I really wanted to think about non-pandemic, non-existential topics. And so in an effort to elevate whatever might remain of my style post WFH, I ordered a selection of belts. I went through the Directrice archives, planned out what colors, styles and widths might go with various outfits and ordered away!

  2. I am not a ruffles and flowers kind of gal, so I cannot speak to the first dress, belted or no, but I love the belt with the second outfit.

    I have not baked at all (nor cooked much to be truthful), but I have eaten a lot of Snickers bars.

  3. Great outfits. I would look like a Polish grandma in that floral dress, but it’s great on you. I love the texture mix in the black on black on black. The necklace is great with it. I see what you mean about stuffing it in your mouth. I have a necklace made of a melted marble that makes me want to do that.

    As for baking, I haven’t had to bake at all, because my 18 year old daughter has been baking nonstop. (My raging sweet tooth is in a state of constant reward.) I have been trying to exercise to counteract that. The most surprising thing she baked was a batch of scones using cake flour, since we had that. They turned out so fluffy it was delightful.

  4. Both outfits are lovely and Michelle would applaud your belt choice.

    Please don’t talk about baking… I had to join Weight Watchers online…. no choice. (I will avert my eyes)

  5. Thank you for the insight about pointy-down necklaces with round necklines. And I don’t know whether is the appropriate venue, but I’m also going to offer sincere condolences about J. Crew — especially so soon after you (re)introduced us. I went on a blouse binge and had looked forward to many more. I think the sad event entitles you to as many lemon bars as you want, for as long as you want

  6. Those are nice combinations and even if you aren’t wearing them this Spring I imagine you could also wear them in the Fall. Who knows if we’ll be going anywhere, besides the polls, by then.

    I have trying to resist the urge to bake. There is a Bundt Cake store that’s a respectable walking distance from our house and I’ve been buying a mini-cake there about once a week. I can support a local business, and have a baked treat that only takes the two of us about 2 servings to polish off.

  7. You’ve shown some chunky-soled sandals before I think – maybe try those to change up the tone of the floral dress ? The extra height of the chunky soles may also be a good balance for the midi length.

  8. I like the mix of blacks with that belt. Not a floral gal although I do like the textile of that first dress… I’ve been living in studio clothing. Starting to yearn for reasons to wear something else but since I’m either in the garden, working in studio or hiking there’s not much point to pulling out the dressy stuff.

    Ah baking yes – today’s batch of sourdough is bubbling. To be honest I’ve baked most of our bread for years though so the pandemic bread thing is amusing but not a change for me. Which lemon bar recipe did you use? I’ve been feeling a mighty need for some. Been sticking mostly to teabreads while my husband has been baking cookies. And I’ll echo MC Bontemps in appreciating your continuing to post in these challenging times!

  9. Corn and Black Pepper Crackers — partly because they are so great and partly because I kept forgetting to get crackers at the store. They’re really more like crunchy savory cookies.

    I love the black outfit!!


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