Friday, September 21, 2007
Dressing My Inner Princess
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.