Friday, September 21, 2007

Dressing My Inner Princess

Trinny Woodall and Susannah Constantine

Stacy and Clinton, Trinny and Susannah: they've all taught me what not to wear. I'm a sucker for fashion shows. I've purged my closet, donated my mistakes, cleaned and mended my keeper pile, and purchased everything they've told me I should wear. And still, I have nothing to wear! Why? I've realized it's mostly because I don't go the right places. I'm a princess without a ball.

The list of Ten Must-Have Wardrobe Items assumes that I'm walking around NYC on a chilly, might-rain kind of day wearing my crisp white shirt, my black pencil skirt, a red cashmere v-neck sweater, suede high-heeled boots, and a tan trench coat. On my head sits a jaunty fedora, and my real alligator bag holds my chic workout clothes, a Burberry umbrella and a beaded camisole to change into for an evening out.

Here's what holds me back from this fabulous look. I'm having hot flashes under my itchy cashmere, which sweats off my Lancome foundation and smears the collar of my shriveled and damp shirt. The pencil skirt hikes up when I'm in the dentist's chair, the trench twists when I get back in the car at the gas station, and the suede boots look odd when I let the repairman in to fix the furnace. If it's raining my windshield wipers do the trick. The hat gets knocked off when I climb in my friend's Mini. The treadmill is downstairs, and I'd spill root beer on the cami. My lifestyle doesn't fit my style.

I own a classic LBD and a classy black suit. Which should I choose for the dance review at the middle school, where I could be feeding a baby a bottle? I'm only comfy in my casual jeans when I'm standing up; sitting in them for a road trip would cut off the circulation to my legs. And how can I kick off my boots and get them back on when I'm flying coach?

I want some advice on how to look polished for my pedicure, how to be jazzy at the piano recital, and how to appear groovy at the grocery store. These are the places I really go. It's fun to buy clothes for the wannabe life I imagine, but often I'm driving through the bank, the dry cleaners and the library book-return and I get home only to realize nobody even saw how dashing I was. Dee leaves while I'm still sporting a bed-head, and snoring into my pillow. Occasionally I'm back in my pj's by the time he gets home. Who cares if I'm a frump?

The problem is, I care! It's important to my self-esteem. When I look in the mirror I want to cheer myself up. So I'll keep looking for a fashion show that will meet my needs, and in the meantime take all the advice I can get from the real princesses in my life.

Princess Hannah

12 comments:

Walker Family said...

I agree! When I go shopping, I want to buy wrap dresses, slacks, cashmere sweaters, and pencil skirts. Then I think--I only have one fancy day to dress up--Sunday! (A woman at church one said I was the fancy mom--I said it's because it's the only day I get to dress up!) Once in a while, a nice dinner. Who truly has the secret to being a chic mommy-at-home doing laundry, running errands, cleaning, and playing on the floor with the kiddies?

Granny Annie said...

Okay Marty, I'm in stitches from laughing. You've hit the fashion nail on the head when it comes to grannies like me. Love it!

Gramafolly said...

We are all princesses! I spend so much time in my closet, organizing and making up outfits, then I put on my big shirt and loose pants and no bra..and think about what I'll wear tomorrow.

gramakas said...

I seem to stick with "uniforms"... you know, the Church uniform,the bedtime uniform, the clean the house uniform, the workout ones, the go to the office ones... basically I wear the same outfits for the same occassions -- it saves alot of hassle. Oh, except when I go on trips and then I somehow seem to pack the entrie closet and still hate what I brought! I really don't think there is a solution. Oh yeah, and I'm always going to lose 10 pounds so I don't want to buy anything new either...

gab said...

I think your pirate outfit is an obvious choice for Top Ten.


(Also, have you seen the new show on Bravo channel...it's kind of like WNTW--not as good, but still enjoyable. I can't remember what it's called...does anyone know what I'm talking about?)

mama jo said...

i agree with gabi...your pirate look is the best look you could have...please wear that one...also, i think it's tim gunn's guide to style...that's the one i've been watching...i totally agree with you and have to add...i live in california, so when it's already hot outside and all you do is get hot, how do you look cute? it's hard to wear cute sweaters and coats because i'm so darn hot.....

gab said...

Yes, it is Tim Gunn. And yes, with global warming, it is harder and harder to look cute. Who needs a trench coat? It is still 85 degrees....

Stie: My Favorite Things said...

Okay, I would not recommend taking fashion advice from the Princess Hannah. She wears white mini-skirts AFTER Labor Day and encourages more accessories than your body can hold. She will steer you wrong, trust me.

This post had me laughing so hard picturing you squirming in your pencil skirt and letting the repairman in while wearing your spiky boots. I say, dress up anyway. Even if nobody sees you and Dee thinks you live in pajamas. If you feel pretty, then you are pretty (and you really are). So keep fashionizing and we'll all try to keep up with you.

Nimmy said...

I went to the pediatrician the other day. I observed all the cute sets of scrubs the nurses were wearing with their crocs. They looked cute and comfortable. I am sorely tempted to start wearing scrubs and crocs while I'm at home with my kids! I deal with as many bodily fluids as any nurse.

The only problem with this idea, is that I love to shop and I love to create new looks.

My idea for this fall: buy lots of cute fitted jackets to throw over my jeans and t-shirts so that I can pick up my kindergartener in style.

MissKris said...

I think I'd be embarrassed if I ran into anyone dressed the way I'm dressed when I'm out walking my grandson and/or my grand-poopy Chloe. But I never run in to anyone...most have "real" jobs so they're wherever they're working at...and I'm comfortable so I don't really care. What ever happened to the girl who'd spend half a paycheck on new clothes, hmmmmm? Oh well. I like my jeans,tees, and sweaters. I guess I don't look too bad 'coz people still talk to me, lol!

Heed said...

My advice is to wear pajamas until 3 in the afternoon... Take your shower, put on your cute outfit, take a picture, then change back into your jammies right after dinner. It works for me and my 4 princesses. Mind you... we don't go anywhere.
Which brings the question any time I really get dressed... "Where we going today?" "No where, Chels. I'm just getting ready for the day." Then she thinks, "right. You didn't do that any other day this week."

kenju said...

Too funny! I am waiting for the day when lounge wear is the norm for shopping, etc. Then I will be right in style!