I had a wedding to attend that evening - an investment banker I had met at work, who was marrying a gorgeous (& thin) lady - the two were besotted with each other.
It was at the Australian Museum and knowing Karl, I knew it was going to be totally elegant.
I was right.
I decided however not to go for a strictly elegant look - in my book that would have been a LBD. Too much blending in.
I felt like standing out. So I scanned my closet (shop your closet strikes again) to come up with this ensemble.
A YSL (or SL) from AW 2010/2011, purchased from David Jones in the Sydney CBD at 50% off. Still a four figure bomb though.
Looks simple, but there are many seams giving it shape, along the bodice area, the sides and the hem.
Its a thick sateen cotton, in an A line which is shorter at the back hem than the front. Its unlined but the fabric has so much body, you'd never know.
It is sleeveless with a high neck & an open back neckline.
Its a very vivid purple with blue undertones.
|I love the way its all finished - no stitch looks out of place.|
|The back hem is shorter than the front - a reverse mullet!|
|The back view - the collar is stitched in the right |
places to fall evenly to the level of the armpits.
Slight problem with this dress - I have gained weight & the back hem is seriously too high for my liking.
The solution: Black tights.
In the past I had worn it with sheer smokey hose, but fat legs from the back need hose.
Its the 3rd time I have ever worn tights. Strange but true.
So far the dress has been worn 5 times, all weddings.
I tried to find the dress on the runway and could only find a version of it. Or two versions.
Its the exact colur of exit 26, but the style/fabric is close to exit 35 (minus the feathered tail thingey).
Its the only evening thing I own that isnt black or navy.
It was cold & I needed both cover & a degree of glamour.
I tried a floor length Carla Zampatti navy wool crepe coat (20 years old) but its lines were too straight & it compromised the A line on the dress.
Then out comes this Yojhi Yamamoto black number, knee length in a flared skirt style. It has raw edges and a military look (without the brass). It fits & flares just like the dress.
If you're wondering the size "3" isnt "3" as in 2, 4, 6, 8, 10.
Its "3" as in 1, 2, 3.
The "3" represents a Large, give or take.
Here it is - from the AW 2010/2011 collection, exit 12.
It has no buttons or closures except a wide belt which I dont wear. The pockets are placed on the sides so they are not visible. When the front falls open (but its double breasted so it still stays quite closed), it has a very slimming effect. The exit 12 looks quite boxy compared to the way I wear mine.
The sleeves are rolled back.
But look at the way the turn back is stitched back to the sleeve. Love this type of detail on expensive garments.
Yojhi came from New York, specifically Saks, at 30% off & form memory it still only in the semi-low four figures. No way I'd be able to get something like this in Australia as that price.
I love the swing that the coat has - seriously massive but the fabric is so heavy it falls gracefully & doesnt stick out.
The coat brooch
The brooch has a glass top with the embedded mother of pearl & glassy inserts. The bottom which has the pin is clear glass. Its a gorgeous piece and its sterling 925.
I acquired this silver brooch from an ex boyfriend's ex girlfriend. I exited out of the relationship just in the nick of time to save my sanity, but if I had stayed longer, I would have acquired a whole lot more stuff. She was a terrific role model hoarder of beautiful stuff. LOL!
I may have a gazillion small black evening bags, but I am a kitchen sink girl. So I reached for this Moschino softly coloured Kelly style with a few twists.
Bought from David Jones about 5 years ago. Not cheap, but was 50% off.
It has every colour I never wear in clothing - rust, olive and a warm blue. For some reason it works with my dark coloured closet even though its tones are muted & warm. Go figure.
|Not only this, but she has red leather piping along her edges.|
STYLE TIP: High neckline? Dont wear a necklace & dont wear earrings that dangle alot.
The earrings worked on a high neckline because the dangly chains were very fine & the bulky glass circles were up high close to the ear.
Ann Demeulemeester, about $300 because one of the glass circles was chipped - you can see it in the photo. Bought at the Frock Exchange in Clovelly. Box & felt included. I adore the packaging.
Ann D does this circular glass style in many styles of jewellery - necklaces, bracelets, rings & earrings. The metal is always sterling 925 with a deliberate gunmetal distressed look.
Arm & finger parties
On one hand, stacked bracelets, including a black leather Ginger & Smart, a silver Bottega (my fave) and a bunch
of silver/black/grey beaded versions (most of which I made). Plus the single purple one to tie into the dress.
On the other arm, I went for a simple Hermes bangle in B&W. When I stacked a whole lot of bracelets on, it didnt look right, so Hermes tends to win out in the end - most times.
I wore my fave Bottega intercaccio ring but stacked the silver Ann D chain/ball necklace behind it.
On the other arm went the black & silver chunky ring.
These were the easiest choice of the whole outfit.
Since I never wear tights & this is the only black suede pair which can cross over to evening, they were easily the only ones that would work with black tights.
For the record, I never by suede shoes - I only have 2 or 3 pairs in a collection which is ten fold. Reason? Its too hard to look after & looks ratty very fast. Leather is much easier to take care of.
These babies are Donna Karan Collection, bought from Myer a few years ago, at one of the last stage reduction sales. So initially they were 40% off, then another 30% off that, then another 20% off from memory. Which translated to about 66% off an original of $1.2K. Mine. Now.
The only problem is that heels need re-capping.
The soles and heels are rubber and the wear on them last night made them need hospital.
Apart from the cap itslef, I normally dont allow the vertical part of the heels to be bruised before taking shoes for repair - but these caught me off guard.
Off to the boot maker, stet.
How do you get dressed for an occasion?
Sounds like a silly question?
Many years ago, when I had an occasion to attend, I would select an item (whether clothing or shoes or bag or jewellery) & build the outfit around it.
Now I picture a look I want to achieve (feminine, sexy, glamourous, elegant, avant garde etc) and shop my closet for things that will create that impression.
I dont know when that change happened. I seriously dont.
So how do you get dressed for an occasion?