Friday, September 6, 2013

Hat Attack -- What I Did/n't Wear for Back to School

I thought I could do the "two birds, one stone" thing here, and model a hat for Style Crone's September gathering of the hair-covering clan (mine, obviously, just won't. be. covered.) while showing you one of the outfits I wore my first week back in the classroom. It's trickier than I thought, turns out, to get a photo of a hat you're wearing -- one must keep one's head at a certain angle, wiggle the camera off to the side, go high, go low, all just to try to display bows, stripes. . . .

But, of course, I didn't wear this hat into the classroom, although I think it adds a certain rather nautical je ne sais quoi to my ensemble, thank you very much. . .

Nor did I wear these navy-and-white slingbacks, bought many years ago in Paris. Looking in the mirror and then at this photograph, I saw them as too light to anchor the look, somehow.  So the poor things got left home yet again. (Really, I'm going to have to make an effort to get them out in the world, before they develop a complex -- I'll see if I can record that and show you, soon.)
Instead, after doffing the hat, I also switched the shoes to "my mom's Ferragamos"
I must admit I'm still working to accept the look of nude legs in all their un-tanned glory, but the building I teach in is neither air-conditioned NOR does it have much possibility of air exchange. Two tired fans work noisily to move stuffy air around a south-facing room. One morning this week it was raining, overcast, and about 17 degrees. I still wore a summer-weight shift like this, knowing it would be 27 degrees inside those rooms. So that even if aspects of my "certain age" didn't occasionally contribute to overheating, even if the fact of performing in front of 28 skeptical young faces didn't make me sweat, the room temperature was already put unreasonable demands on my deodorant.

I'm very grateful for this Smythe blazer which lends enough authority to the outfit . . . and which I managed to keep on for at least the first fifteen minutes of class.
The little shift has short sleeves, I'm pleased to say -- just one less thing to worry about, having 'pits covered, I have to say . . .  I picked it up in Bordeaux this summer at a Nice Things shop -- I discovered this Spanish label last year in San Sebastian -- a bit Anthropologie, a bit April Cornell, a big part its own witty self at decent price points in natural fabrics. The Bordeaux shop walked right in front of me on a rainy day when some very unpleasant (extended) family doings necessitated a bit of retail therapy. I spent a really pleasant hour with a helpful and friendly vendeuse, the whole time chatting en français thanks to her patience, and I walked out with, um, okay, maybe a few pieces. (no one needs numbers, right?)

 Okay, I would wish for 2 or 3 more inches in length here, but I couldn't resist the dress' marine insouciance -- the back is navy and the front, which you can't see clearly, has a great screen-print of a sailboat in some full wind action.

I'm off to yoga to let go of the week's front-of-the-classroom tensions -- it takes some monumental energy to begin turning classes into discussion/learning communities, and I met 100+ new people in 4 groups this week in six 90-minute sessions. Whew!

After yoga, I'm heading to Vancouver to put in some Nana time, take my daughters for pedis, then circle round through Victoria to lunch and shop with my son and daughter-in-law. Oh, and re-read two books for next week's classes. A little bit busy, I will be. But that's September, right? It's got that crazy let's-get-it-started energy that I kinda like, once I stop resisting it.

And you, what might you be up to, this fine September weekend. Don't forget to check out the hat-wearers over at Judith's. . . .

25 comments:

  1. Hi Mater, this is a great outfit, I love the red stripe with the red shoes. The hat is lovely, so super chic! And your hair just won't be tamed, will it?!

    I can't imagine how you keep your equilibrium with all those new faces - hope the yoga helps.

    Our weekend starts tonight with a pig-roast at my husband's work. We are also taking our younger son out for a bit of driving practice for the first time (should be nice and quiet on the army base on a Friday afternoon). We may all need the rest of the weekend to recover ....

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    1. May I admit that I'm really glad to have those new-driver-in-the-family years behind me. . . .good luck!

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  2. The red shoes are perfect! I always like to start off with a blazer. I find it really hard to take a picture of myself with a hat. I started reading Crusoes's Daughter and I am finding the beginning less than engrossing. Sounds like you have a busy week-end.

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    1. I haven't heard of Crusoe's Daughter . . . I'll have to hear your final review of it.

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  3. What a delightful hat and you can really wear it with a twinkle! Makes me smile!

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    1. Thanks! I must admit I often lose my nerve and leave the hat at home, but I do like the jaunty air it conveys.

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  4. First I love the hat and YOU in the hat! Can so much remember those nervous first few days of meeting a class before any conversation/discussion is rolling along. It was then that I discovered the smell of fear. It always seemed to me that the sweat that came from fear has a different aroma to it.

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    1. Interesting! I haven't noticed that about myself, but I do remember the scent coming off a dog whose hackles had been raised in fear -- a scent I'd never smelled before and really quite distinctive.

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  5. What you wound up with seems a lot like the perfect Get Things Done outfit.

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    1. Yes! And we should all have a few, put together and waiting in the wardrobe, no?!

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  6. Great first-week outfit! Down here it has been cold, rainy and foggy every morning - more the weather for a fall jacket, heavy shoes and (gasp!) socks!

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    1. We haven't had fog here yet, but driving to Tsawwassen this morning we encountered a patch that followed us halfway to Swartz Bay. (I've grabbed my knit socks, though, a few evenings lately)

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  7. Love the dress. I think there is a special pleasure in wearing things acquired while travelling. Also your mothers shoes. I have a silk chiffon scarf that belonged to my late mother and always feel close to her when I wear it.

    Thanks for the link to the Nice Things website. Especially nice are the pictures from their current collection with women of varying ages to showcase their clothes.
    Lilibet

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    1. I agree, Lilibet. Wearing clothes that remind me of travels is always a particular pleasure as is remembering my mother through her hand-me-downs. Glad to know you clicked through to that website -- I was really pleased to discover this company.

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  8. A very 'smart' fedora! It may be tricky to get a shot of your hat, but you did an excellent job. Thank you for linking up with Hat Attack.

    I enjoyed reading about the new beginnings of your life. I have the same feelings about September. A new energy. A desire to move forward. Must be all those years of getting myself or my children ready for school.

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    1. Whether or not we're students or teachers, our grade school years trained us to think of September as a new start, didn't they?

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  9. The hat adds a jaunty air to your outfit that's very attractive. Your first-day-back-to-school outfit looks great. Hope you are in the midst of a very lovely weekend.
    Fog and drizzle here today.

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    1. Thanks, Lorrie -- we visited my son and daughter-in-law in Victoria today, so got a little taste of your fog -- but you also generously shared a beautiful sunny day! Looks as if there's more of the same this week.

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  10. Your life sounds so wonderfully full. I so enjoy these glimpses into your life! Hope you enjoyed your well deserved weekend!

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    1. Thanks so much, Tamera. Hope your weekend was a happy one as well -- we're both very fortunate, no?

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  11. I love hats and am right there with you. You look great and you outfit does too! I think both pairs of shoes work... lots of fun. I will have to check out Judith's site. It sounds like you have September covered..best wishes! :)

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  12. Poor slingbacks, left home again! I adore the hat on you though and the red shoes are perfect. Perfect also the grounding that comes, perhaps, from walking in your mother's shoes. Interesting how we are shaped by the style choices of our mothers and yet me make these disparate bits our own. I suppose I am speaking to an accumulation of posts here.

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  13. I like that you are speaking to an accumulation of posts, like that I've ended up trailing my mother through more than I realized and that an alert and valued reader has come along and pointed that out.

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  14. I missed this one with the nude legs. You really shouldn't worry at all because your legs look youthful and muscular. Mine don't look as youthful (even though I am five years younger) but warm weather is warm weather!

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    1. Well, you know all my running should pay off somewhere! Plus my mom had fabulous legs still, at 82. . . .I'm crossing my fingers I might have inherited that genetic programming. . . ;-) Yours looked good as well, in your brave legs-bared stance...

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