Wednesday, November 29, 2017

OOTD: Lunch with a Friend, Downtown

To meet a friend for lunch at Nordstrom earlier this week, I pulled this dress out of the closet. On some levels a coup de foudre when I found it in the Bordeaux & Other Stories store last year, I will admit it hasn't got much play in the year since. Partly because of that hemline, which I think might be a bit shorter thanks to a recent handwash. Too youthful? Too "trying-to-look-youthful"? Still, I like this shape on me and were I not a bit self-conscious about the age, I think this length is probably flattering as well. I love the folkloric embroidery against the fine black wool. I love the pockets. So I ignored the doubtful little voices and turned up the volume on the one that reminded me of what I loved when I handed over my charge card last year.

Here's a close-up of the hair these days, all the artificial colour grown out, the grey curls growing more unruly with every raindrop (and oh, we've got raindrops these days!). I've dithered and dithered about whether to get a cut before my trip, finally leaving a desperate message at my stylist's this morning (she called back, just before I clicked "Publish," and I have an appointment for the afternoon before my flight).  Do you ever find that your hair is finally doing what you want it to just as a cut is scheduled? Mine's just about where I want it now, and changing the length--via scissors or time--can be as temporarily disastrous as opening the oven on a soufflé (too long and the curls stretch out, the top flattens; too short, and I just don't feel like me).
I further silenced my doubts about the dress via this coat, a recent purchase that will be taking its first trip to Europe soon.
I love the simple, classic lines, and I've been wearing it with jeans, skirts, and dresses, boots, ankle boots, low-heeled pumps and flat oxfords, testing its versatility. I'd say it passed with flying colours, as long as I'm adding the flying colours via scarves.
This one's my own handknit, an alpaca rendition of Miriam Felton's Icarus, that I completed in 2007 and blogged about at the time.  One of the oldest handknits I still wear regularly.

And since I was at the mirror with the camera anyway, I grabbed another scarf, my go-to taupe cashmere Bompard, worn at least three times a week, and definitely included on the packing list.
Speaking of which, I'd better get back to that. . . 

44 comments:

  1. I love all of it on you. I don't detect a whiff of either "too youthful" or "trying-to-look too youthful. It's all about the proportion, colour and accessories. The coat is the one everyone needs and is nearly exactly the coat I had made in Shanghai 3 years ago. I will wear it forever. I hope your lunch was lots of fun

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    1. It was a fun lunch, thanks. That coat -- what a wonderful way to remember a special trip!

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  2. Your legs are very slim and the dress shows them to advantage. I would find that I would worry about bending over or leaning over if I wore a short dress but I'm just envious I think because my legs are nothing like yours.

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    1. Hmmm, good point, but I don't know that I ever would lean or bend that far -- I've long since trained myself to use my knees rather than strain my back. Blushing re the legs -- thank you, although they're not as slim as this photo implies ;-)

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  3. The dress looks great on you and the coat has very flattering lines. Hope your lunch was fun.

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    1. And the coat was 50% off when I found it, so a winner all around. And yes, the lunch was fun, thanks.

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  4. I'm in packing mode myself for a brief trip to New Orleans, and trying to avoid being sidetracked by all the non-trip-related tasks. The dress and coat both look wonderful on you. I'm a scarf fan myself, counting on them for a bit of color, especially in this everlasting rain. You might try wearing the dress over a pair of skinny pants to see if that increases the comfort level. Bon voyage!

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    1. So MANY non-trip-related sidetracking tasks, yes!
      And I did try wearing the dress over skinny jeans and found I quite like the look, thank you!

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  5. That dress is perfect on you! I love the detailing, and the coat looks so classic.
    I go through the same dread/longing processes with haircuts- they either cure all my problems or add to them!
    Happy planning/packing!

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    1. Glad you understand the haircut timing dilemma. I've rarely found they cure all the problems right away, actually, as the curls seem to need time to find their way again, and it's often two or three weeks before I'm happy with them.

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  6. The dress is great on you (and I admired it from the start!) Good luck with the packing. My next haircut is scheduled for next week (I pre-book them so I can get in with my hairdresser) but, as you say, my hair is doing (kind of) what I want it to at the moment, and the cut will change that of course, but I hate it when it gets a bit straggly.

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    1. I used to have to pre-book as well, (always 5 to 7 weeks ahead while I was colouring) because my stylist was booked at least a month, often 6 or 7 weeks, ahead. So great now, to be able to wing it a bit. In a pinch, I could go an extra three or four weeks past near-desperation. . .

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  7. The dress is not too short as you have great legs so it works and does not look too young...as well as fabulous hair you must feel confident in your smart coat and scarf.
    Lunch with a friend is one of my favourite things to do...
    hope you had a lovely day.

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    1. Thanks, L. It's true that a good coat and the right scarf can lend considerable confidence.
      I love lunching with a friend as well -- such a perfect, nourishing indulgence.

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  8. Not too short at all. It looks good on you. Love the dress and the coat.

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  9. You know what they say ,what’s the difference between a bad haircut & a good haircut ? - about two weeks . And it seems to be true . I like your outfit , love a man style overcoat & that scarf is my favourite shade of red . Hope lunch was good .
    Wendy in York

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    1. Very true -- I almost always find it takes two weeks for me to love even the good haircuts, truly.
      Me too with the men's style coat -- serviceable and good-looking.
      Yes, a good lunch all around, thanks!

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  10. Love the whole look from the top of your head to your shoes. I live in San Francisco and wear outfits like this all the time and I am way older than you. A perfect outfit for Paris as well. Jennie

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    1. Thanks for the encouragement and inspiration Jennie!

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  11. I love it, top to bottom. I especially like the red scarf with the coat, and the coat is absolutely a classic. (The dress is super cute and NOT too short.) You are going to be very chic on your Europe trip!

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    1. Thanks, DA. Most of the trip will not require much chic-ness, as I drop-off and pick-up my g'daughter from her daycare in a beachtown not so far from Rome. But at least I won't shame my daughter in front of all the Italian Mommas ;-)

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  12. The dress is lovely,you can wear it wherever and whenever you like. I love your new coat and the whole outfit,together with the beautiful hair-don't cut it too short :-)
    Dottoressa

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    1. Thanks K. I'm practising carefully what I'll tell my hairdresser -- I really want to keep most of the length now. . .

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  13. You look great. Love the dress, coat and scarf. You know I think I knitted that same scarf. I must take it out and look for some really cold weather. Love your hair and the shape of it. You've got it altogether.

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    1. Thank you! The scarf is great for its warmth and colour, but also for lightness and the way it can be folded away in almost no room in a purse if the day gets too warm.

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  14. Love the dress and it's the perfect length. Wish I had the knees for it !
    Don't the & Other Stories Body Souffles smell divine ...

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    1. I don't know about these Body Soufflés and now must check them out! Thanks!

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  15. I love this look on you! The dress is perfect, length and all, and THAT SCARF! May I ask what yarn you used? I'm going to look up the pattern, or see if I can convert it to crochet (which I'm much better at). Hoping your packing & trip go smoothly.
    Bev in Dallas

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    1. The scarf is knit with Misti Alpaca Laceweight. As with the classic Shetland Lace shawls, it's fine enough that I can pull it through my wedding ring

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  16. Ditto what everyone else is saying, Frances. Love the dress, and with the black tights and that fabulous coat and the flat shoes...sooo chic. The overall look is classy, and kind of edgy and intelligent. If a look can be said to be "intelligent." Just like you, my dear:)

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    1. You are too kind! and I love it, thanks, Edgy and Intelligent and Classy? Beaming and blushing here. . .

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  17. I saw someone wearing a dress like that, over a straight, knee-length pencil skirt, the kind that's stretchy, and it looked great! O see other comments assuring you it is not too short, but if it •feels• too short, it is.

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    1. Now that's an idea I wouldn't have thought of, but I have just the skirt (although it might be a smidgen too long) and will have to try this.
      When I wear the dress, honestly, I just enjoy it and am not especially conscious about the length, but photos . . .

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  18. Like everyone else, I love the dress.....and scarf, and coat and hair. The phenomenon of the hair length seeming perfect for about 3 days before it is too long and straggly is very familiar to me - I kept putting off cuts and now have a long braid down my back, not a solution for everyone!

    ceci

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    1. Ha! I can see that a braid could be useful for this -- although it's unlikely my layers will ever grow long enough to braid effectively, nor are my curls easily subdued into the plait. . .

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  19. I diagnose that you are suffering from French Hem Length Syndrome. I know this because it afflicts me too. Hem lengths in France for women of our age are so much (delightfully) shorter than in our respective countries. I have summer dresses bought in France which I would never wear in Scotland - temperature aside! - but which are perfect for France. And now recently with winter dresses I find I'm plucking up courage and wearing shorter hem lengths. Always with opaque tights, as you have here. Your coat is rather enviable.
    Just think of the fun you'll have observing and picking up ideas from the Italian school gate mammas! Please do report on this fashion sector.

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    1. It's true -- the opaque tights make me slightly bolder with the hem length, as would the right pair of knee boots.
      The coat's good, isn't it? I was well pleased to find it, especially at such a good discount!
      I will be taking careful notes at the daycare doors ;-)

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  20. Hi Frances...still trying to comment. We are home and maybe now it will realize that I really exist. You look fabulous as usual.
    Ali

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    1. Welcome home! You'll be curling up by the wood stove, I hope, coming to terms with this wet, grey reality. . .

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  21. Taking a few minutes to catch up on favourite bloggers on this very grey and wet first of December. Ditto to what others have said about your skirt length and legs. The dress, the coat, the shoes - all so chic and comfortable-looking.

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  22. Your style seems clearer and clearer to me. And very strong.

    Also your gray hair suits you. <3

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  23. Your style seems clearer and clearer to me. And very strong.

    Also your gray hair suits you. <3

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