Thursday, June 13, 2013

What I Wore: I am not rich enough for cheap clothes.

I was at Fitted for Work for most of the day today, so the outfit had to be smart (as I am styling clients) & practical (as I am bending, stretching & reaching for items in all sorts of places).

I think I nailed smart-modern, but practical was not-where near nailed. Read on... 

The jacket

A navy waffle weave double faced wool long line Escada jacket. Lightweight & while it has a matching pencil skirt, there is no way my thighs can fit into it at the moment.

The jacket is a tad tight around the hips so I wear it undone - it has a lovely drape abut it - looks better undone than done.

I love the cuffs on this too.

STYLE TIP: When you try on a jacket, in addition to fit, colour, fabric, consider the "softness" of its look. No, not just the softness of the fabric, but the softness of the look.

What am I talking about?

See how it is curved at the bottom front edges? See how the cuffs are rounded? The lapels doent have a peaked (pointy) bottom part? All that contributes to the softness of the jacket. So if I wanted to really intimidate someone, say in a business setting, I would wear a jacket which had no curves (apart from being waisted).

The shirt

This is the non practical part of the outfit. Its the first time I have worn it & I had a feeling it wouldnt win "Practicality of the Year", but that was an understatement.

The upshot of something you love not being practical is that you wont wear it often. Cost per wear (CPW) will stay high.
Hence the saying: I am not rich enough for cheap clothing. 

Its a Zara shirt in 100% sheer poly in a blue check. Its part of the Zara Woman range, which I find more fashion forward with better fabrics than the "Zara Basic" range. It was $80, I think.

FABRIC TIP: If this top was 100% viscose (which would have had a similar feel), I would not have bought it. Viscose doesnt wear well. It is very fragile when wet & loses its body easily, making it look very ratty. 100% poly will last a million landfills (unfortunately) but at least I'll be wearing it forever.

What won me over about the top was partly the check pattern (I love checks) but also the cross over front. The last time I saw this wrap shirt style in a big way was back in the series LA Law in the late 80s/early 90s. The District Attorney, Grace Van Owen used to wear them all the time.

STYLE TIP: While styles do come back, please note that they always come back differently. This is a good example. 

Back then, they fully crossed over & were tucked in. 
Now they are cut longer, lower, at the most, half tucked in, more casual & just, well, cut differently.

The Zara trend picks up from the wrap shirt trend on the runways for SS 2013 (southern hemisphere 2013/14). We saw it at Dries Van Noten, Derek Lam & Alexander Wang, 

Its a top you slip over your head - it doesnt open at the front, apart from the collar area. the two wrap bits on either side of the body are one continuous strip of fabric which is literally folded over to produce the wrap. The back is a single layer, and it sits longer. 

So - what's the practicality problem with this shirt?
It keeps riding didnt help that I unpicked the press stud that keeps the front closed, but it just keeps riding up & choking me - well, almost. Drove me mad, keeping it down.

The reason I unpicked the press stud was because it was a pressure point & would pull the fibres in that area - which was front centre. Not a good spot for pulled fabrics to show. 

When you look at the work on this closely, its not flash.
But its a good example of you get what you pay for.  For example, the stitching on the sleeve shows some rippling of the fabric (machine tension not correct). But I liked the style & print enough to get over this and buy.

The underlayer

A shirt this sheer needs cami. The first place I go to is Target. They have shoestring camis in every colour for $9 each. 

Their Hot Aptions range has the same, but with a lower quality (& price). Specifically the straps on the HO range are an elastic which is different to the fabric on the body of the cami & with wear, it starts to look very different in colour to the rest of the cami. Not a good long term look.

As for the colour, I was looking for a navy one & couldnt find it (oops), settling for this cool toned dark mocha. 

It worked well to bring up the blues in the top. 

Also since practicality was an issue for me today - these Target camis are long line - it sat over my jeans and didnt move all day. Unlike the Zara top. 

The necklaces

Alot of open space around a chiffon neckline calls for a few layered necklaces.

Enter a Tiffany and a lapis cross (ebay from a lady in the UK who sold me a few of her bling pieces), both sterling.

The bracelets

One of the bracelets has fallen off the photo. It was a haematite strand with a marcasite magnetic closure.

The two which arent camera shy are a Santos Wish & a home made silver one.

The shoes

These are the YSL rubber platforms which I literally bounce on. 

See you tomorrow.

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