Today I woke up feeling particularly low and resigned myself to the idea that I would just stay in bed for the rest of the day. But then, right as I was about to pull my covers over my head to coax myself into another few hours of restless sleep, a good friend of mine text me. Immediately I remembered that New Years Eve was tomorrow and knew that I needed to pick myself up and get moving if I wanted to be well enough to ring in the new year right. So I subjected myself to tough love, forced myself to get up, get dressed, and went out for some fresh air and food. Speaking of fresh, I thought it would be nice to break in my mint 1950s pencil skirt that I thrifted earlier this week. I adore how pencil skirts cinch my waist, hug my hips, and most importantly, make my butt look good (haha, I'm half kidding). It makes perfect sense that these skirts were popular in the 1950s when an impressive woman was a trophy wife; pretty, seen but not heard. You could say that pencil skirts were created to merely demean women further, making them more of a display for men to gawk at, but I'm pretty sure that half of the time women purposely wield some sort of power with the manner in which they dress (Marilyn Monroe, Joan Holloway, etc). And yes part of that power is based in sexuality, but the other is rooted in confidence. Women were probably driven half crazy having to be so submissive, therefore it seems only natural that they would start wearing skirts that screamed loud and clear that they were women. "I AM A WOMAN, LOOK AT MY HIPS! If I don't feel like hiding it behind yards and yards of fabric, underneath petticoats and full skirts, then I won't. I'm shaped like this for a reason, and if you can't handle that image, then GTFO." Ahah, of course that's just my exaggerated and belligerent interpretation of what women were thinking, but who knows I could be fairly accurate :P
librarian libertarian is my self proclaimed political disposition. i'd get into the details of what that entails but i'm not entirely sure myself, and if i start to develop the ideology now we'd never get to talking about the outfit, which is likely the main reason you are here. anyway, i managed to pull my still ill self together for a hot second to take a brief outing to a book store to get another novel to keep me company as i continue to rest. i ended up dressing up in this preppy peach outfit and thought i looked like a librarian from the waist up, but a liberated one from the waist down; see summery espadrilles.
peach plaid peter pan collared blouse - vintage
peach cardigan - vintage
gray leggings - forever 21
navy espadrilles - vintage
I'm sure that all of you retro loving minxes have already heard of Stop Staring!, one of the fashion industry leaders in creating original retro/vintage inspired clothing. Sexy but always classy, Stop Staring! creates stunning pieces that flatter all body types, and has wearers exuding infinite amounts of confidence and elegance.
I myself have had a curvier physique for most of my post-pubescent life, and clothing that molded to my tiny waist but ample hips was something that was hard to come by. And I'm sure that if I came across Stop Staring! sooner, my former hourglass body would have been strutting around in their hip hugging, waist cinching clothing a long time ago.
About two weeks ago I was lucky enough to be able to attend the Stop Staring! sample sale at the Stop Staring! showroom in Paramount, CA. I had made up my mind that this would be the year that I would finally get myself a Stop Staring! dress after years of admiring their line of clothing. However, I was hesitant about going because as a person constantly struggling with severe bouts of anxiety, I had lost a substantial amount of weight over the course of four months, and I no longer had my familiar curvy physique that I was genuinely proud of. This new petite body had me terribly insecure and I was afraid that a trip to Stop Staring! would confirm my new found fear; that I had lost my feminine shape. But with the encouragement of my mother I went anyway, and I am so glad I did.
I expected the sale to be a stressful frenzy of women, like black friday, minus the testosterone and with 50 extra shots of estrogen. I imagined pushing, snatching, dirty looks, and caddy remarks (a nightmare for someone with severe anxiety). Instead what I got was one of the most pleasant shopping experiences of my life. Everyone was super friendly, an occasional bump into another customer was accompanied with mutual apologies and smiles. The staff on hand were extremely helpful and sweet, making sure that everyone left with something that made them look and feel amazing. It seemed that everyone, customers and staff alike were just happy to be there, and I think that's part of the euphoria of uniting a pretty dress with a pretty women.
The dresses. I tried on about 15, which sounds crazy for someone like me who hates stepping foot into a dressing room, but it's true. And pretty much every dress I stepped into looked great on me. I felt like crying. I was so worried that with my new body I would look like a 13 year old boy in anything I tried on, but boy were those anxieties far from reality. Those dresses hugged my tiny waist, accentuated what was left of my curves, and molded itself to my newly petite, but not any less feminine body. And when I walked out of my dressing room to show my mother what I was wearing, I was not a bit shy, and many of the other lovely customers complimented me on how cute some of the dresses were on me. I even saw other women much curvier than I wearing the same things but the dresses looked just as amazing on their body type too. I was in awe. These dresses look good on ANY body. No kidding. Needless to say I left with two Stop Staring! dresses instead of one, and at the up to 50% off price tag it wasn't too big of a financial blow. But with how well these dresses fit, and how beautiful they make you feel, it's like an investment in self esteem, and feeling that good about yourself is worth every penny.
See you at the next Stop Staring! Sample Sale ;)
romance dress in pink - stop staring!
nude peep toes - vintage (thrifted)
When I'm feeling down I tend to dress like a boy. During one of my more lengthy cross-dressing rebellions I wore plaid shirts under grandpa sweaters, and basically paraded around looking like Mr.Rogers every day for a good 3 months (don't get me wrong, I've got nothing but love for that good-natured, king of sweaters/cardigans/knitted goods). And of course my tendency to keep my hair quite short doesn't really help anyone identify my sex when I have these reoccurring flirtations with androgyny. But I don't care, for me, the way I dress is a form of expression. The way I feel always manages to manifest into my outfit and styling choices, and I'm sure half the time I'm not aware of it. You could even say that when menswear finds its way into being featured predominately in my wardrobe, it's just me once again trying to reject whatever it is that is bothering me that comes along with being a young woman. Of course it doesn't change anything, I'll be a woman no matter how I dress, but in a more masculine outfit I feel a little less vulnerable, a little less approachable, and a little less like a sitting duck. Not that I feel like that when I dress more feminine, no not at all. It's just when I especially feel that way, it's nice to put on an outfit that makes me feel a little less so. And in the end the way you dress should make you feel good right? Because I'm sure that if we were perfectly happy with the way our bodies looked without being decked out in material goods, we'd just walk around naked.
head scarf - vintage (thrifted)
rose boyfriend blazer - urbanoutfitters (super sale)
tweed trousers - urbanoutfitters (super sale)
brown oxfords - forever21