Tuesday, March 2, 2010

How I wore it: colors and prep

Look! I sometimes wear colors! This outfit didn't really have much going for it, actually, but since I was wearing a SALMON/PINK-striped shirt and my mustard-y flats, I thought I had to document it before you believed that I was a liar who only wore black and grey (...sigh). Although the outfit borders on the frumpiness, I think the fact that I'm a) so damn young, and b) had unruly hair (I was the living image of Medusa today) kind of helped me pull off a sort of messy, rumply look underneath the preppiness. And no one mistook me for a student, so I had that happening in my favor (to be fair, that hasn't happened since September).

I have mixed emotions with regard to proper button-down shirts. You see, my mother is an impeccable dresser and has very good, classic style. In her dream life, I would always be wearing a collared shirt and some nice slacks. Of course, I spent my college and graduate school years trying to rebel against that. [Notice that I picked the years that I didn't live with my folks: I don't want to be TOO rebellious!] In college, I wore everything from punk-influenced safety-pinned t-shirts with my fourteen-hole Docs to raver pants with glittery t-shirts to hippy chic: I was finding my niche! To this day, I pick and choose my favorite aspects of each 'group.' I still love my huge Doc Martens boots with their Union Jack laces (although they're not in Boston with me, alas). I wear my Birkenstock sandals everywhere in the summer. Needless to say, I've relaxed a bit. I mean, I still wear full-on green eyeliner every day, but my style choices are a bit safer. I would be comfortable in front of my parents with the majority of my outfits, even though I know they sometimes raise their eyebrows at my tunic tops and skinny jeans.

Notice, though, that buttoned down and preppy aren't in my usual arsenal. I...just can't do it. I am not a person who likes to wear a collared shirt unless I have to. I would make a terrible businessman. I tried to break away from that my whole life, and still do (early on in our dating days, my husband--who has a lovely, European, classic style--informed me that I dressed "like a teenager": I'm still not sure whether it was a compliment or not). The problem?

I wear it well. Yup. I can ROCK a Brooks Brothers button-down shirt like nobody's business. When I wear mother-approved or even mother-BOUGHT clothes ... I look good. Classy. Casually and effortlessly preppy and WASP-y. I...just don't like it. And the killer? Whenever I wear something chosen and/or bought by my mom, my husband loves it. This morning, barely awake, he opened one eye, saw my classy shirt and--even though it was paired with a corduroy skirt--exclaimed over how much he liked my outfit.

Sigh. I guess it's good to know that I look good when I dress classy. It doesn't mean that I have to like it.

... I might be almost thirty with a steady job and husband and on the search for a house, but that doesn't mean I can't still have my quiet rebellions!

Salmon and white striped shirt: Brooks Brothers, gift from mother
Beige corduroy skirt: Gap outlet 
Grey stockings: H & M
Mustard flats: Nine West, via DSW

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