Photo courtesy of BRES
How was your weekend? Mine – as usual – took on a life of its own, and THE DRESS is now winging its way back to Dillard’s. No shopping in the big city for me, but Gretchen says weekends are for lap-time and long walks. Kids in the Kitchen was FABULOUS, with a record-setting attendance, despite the perfect weather. My friend who owns the Blue Ridge Eco Shop does have me thinking that I need
worms a Wormtopia. I used to compost rather rustically, but then came Sissy the dog with no boundaries. Now, as you know, she has absolutely no freedom at all, so I could compost again, and let those worms make fertilizer for the roses…
I should have a better segue from worm poo to wardrobe essentials, but it’s Monday and I got nuthin’. So, it’s back to Mr. Gunn and his wardrobe essentials, with my apologies. We’re all trying to save the planet, right?
Tim Gunn’s 10 Essential Items Every Woman Needs
• Basic black dress
• Trench coat
• Classic dress pants
• Classic white shirt
• Day dress
• Cashmere sweater
• A comfortable alternative to a sweatsuit
The first five items were covered in THIS post, so we’ll jump right in with the blazer. Anyone else think of a Chevy SUV when they hear the word blazer? No? Well, I do have three of these too, all in the target size I *THINK* I’m heading towards. All are wool. One is black, one is red with black lapels, and one is a deep hunter green with gold buttons. I’m not sure any meet current blazer cut and style requirments, but until they do fit, I can’t be sure.
I do think this Worthington option is what Mr. Gunn had in mind. Maybe buy a dark suit with a skirt and jacket that can both be re-purposed as needed? (Or this jacket and its matching separate skirt-friend?)
Does anyone know what I should look for in a “timeless” blazer these days? How many buttons? How deep on the lapels? I was always taught a well-fitting “suit coat” bottom hem should rest in the curve of my fingers with my hand bent inward, but maybe the model’s hem is higher? I don’t have long arms, but petite jackets are usually a miss, because I do have a long torso and a chest that definitely isn’t any word that is a synonym for small. Hem.
Ha! No pun was intended, but yeah, many of my jackets get their sleeves hemmed.
Day dress. We do agree on what a day dress is, right? No? Well, that’s because it’s not clearly defined much of anywhere. It’s kinda’ like “preppy”… it brings to mind something a little different for each of us, but they’re all similar enough notions, or so I suspect. Wiki reaches back to the 19th century, when a “day dress” was more discrete than an “evening dress”.
I tend to think of a day dress as a Sunday church dress of my youth. It’s not a sundress or a casual jumper or denim anything. It’s a nice dress, probably closest to a traditional career dress as one gets these days. It most assuredly is not strapless or anything you’d pull on over a swimsuit. The image above is a tropical weight wool blend sheath. I’m not sure it’s the day dress I’d add to my essentials, but I think Mr. Gunn would approve.
Cute & cashmere, but not an essential
Ah, the cashmere sweater. I touched on this in the first post. I know some of you are going to insist there are items on this list that won’t work in your life, and I totally understand. My wardrobe is starkly different now than it was when I worked 10 24-hr. days a month in a navy uniform, and had the rest of the month to present myself as I pleased. However, I do have a life outside of the shop, and while I pout a little every time, I do leave the house without the DIVA and her drool and claws.
I will say it again; EVERYONE should own a cashmere sweater. No, they aren’t cheap, but you can find them on eBay, at thrift stores, and many of you could knit your own if you were so inclined. So unless you’re REALLY allergic, there’s nothing you can say to convince me otherwise… we’re all worthy of cashmere. It’s warm, soft, light and just plain yummy.
Me, I’m a cardigan girl, but as I do believe Mr. Gunn intends for us to stamp our own individuality and style on this list, you go for a pullover or a keyhole short-sleeved cashmere sweater if that’s what sings to you. I am also sure that while I love the Babs (above), Mr. Gunn would have heart palpitations if I suggested it was my essential cashmere sweater. Hem. No, I’d like to have a solid, maybe something more along the lines of the LL Bean Classic Cashmere Sweater… I’m just really not feeling LL Bean’s seasonal colors right now though. The blue is too periwinkle and the pink is too mauve. Meh.
That brings us to jeans. Jeans are my standard work pants, but you know what?! I ditch them for yoga pants when I get home as fast as I change out of a cocktail dress. I think I’m going to try a pair of Not Your Daughter’s Jeans when I get to my goal weight. Anyone else have a brand they love? Or can you tell me how to pick one of the 100 styles of NYDJ for my own body?!
I picked the pair in the photo because they’re stretch. I like stretch because it helps with the “back gap” I have with all pants. I most assuredly will NOT be wearing my jeans with heels, nor do I want a peg leg, nor a wide leg… ?? I just want a dark denim with a straight leg, a not-hip hugger waist, and a little lycra. Is that too much to ask?
Evidently, it is. I spent some more time on Nordstrom’s site, and I can find what I want in a black, but not a traditional denim. Sigh. If you find ’em, let me know, okay?
Now. Praytell… what on earth is “a comfortable alternative to a sweatsuit”? I like yoga pants and a non-imprinted tee for around the house or rushing to the firehouse or working out. Is THAT what Mr. Gunn means?
I NEVER tuck my shirt in though. How is that comfortable or practical when working out?!
Whew. We marched on through Mr. Gunn’s list in two posts. Please do tell me what your essentials list would look like. For instance, there have been many times in my life I’ve not had a day dress in my closet (that fits), and there have also been eras where there were no slacks, even no jeans and I still don’t have the perfect cashmere cardi, but I intend to right that wrong this fall.
Of course, if you’re already tired of my fashion babble, pop over to the girls’ blog and you can read about dog food – again. And don’t forget to tell me about YOUR weekend, unless you did your taxes. I have enough of them in my life, thanks!