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Archive for June, 2012

En Vogue

When it comes to fashion, I’m no slave to a label.  I do not own a designer handbag.  I rarely buy shoes that cost more than $40 a pair.   I’ve yet to meet a straight-leg Gap pant in LONG length that I didn’t like.  Based on a somewhat traumatic fashion upbringing, I think I’ve come a long way.

My brief career into the high stakes world of fashion took place in 8th grade, when I begged my mom to buy me navy corduroy chinos from the Limited.  It was like one step away from being stopped by Calvin Klein and begged to anchor his spring line as the grand finale in Bryant Park.  Except he’s probably never been to Valley View Mall in Roanoke, Virginia.  Weird, right?

Unfortunately, I was too busy examining my cystic acne and hormone-crazed curly hair in the dressing room mirror to read the tags and take the time to understand the difference between long length pants and regular ones that only looked long enough, but were sure to shrink like a proverbial violet as soon as my mom “forgot” and “accidentally” dried them because she was too busy listening to her book on tape from the library.  And this was before “50 Shades of Gray”.  Hoo boy.  For the sake of my brain and my memories of this life-shaping event, let’s all imagine that my mom was listening to tapes of the Bible as she sorted laundry that fateful day, and washed those blasted pants in warm water, and dried them on “super hot,” mmmmk?

A few days later, despite their immediate reduction in length at the hands of my mother, I held up my end of the “promise to wear them if she bought them,” and walked dutifully off the bus into the student “holding area” where they gathered us before first bell, rocking chinos and probably some collared shirt.  Sometimes one’s destined to be a nerd almost from birth.  Such was the case with me.

The loudest, fattest girl in school, cleared her throat and yelled out, “I didn’t know high waters were back in style!!!”  Nevermind the fact that she was approaching three spins on a standard bathroom scale and literally had a beard.  I was destroyed.  It felt like a thousand heads snapped in my direction as I looked down at my shoes and prayed to God to “just take me now.”   He did not.  Between God and my mom and her permanent press setting, I was permanently scarred.

Fast forward to today and you can understand why I read the tags, try everything on for good measure, and favor knee-length skirts whenever I can find them.  What I do not favor, however, is fashion advice from the ill-advised. If you are a fashion designer, nee fashion designer, then I trust you.  You’ve become famous FOR your fashion, and I will reward you with my dollars.  Be you Michael Kors, Calvin Klein, or Mrs. “The Limited” herself, I will trust that you understand how to design clothing.  I will believe that you employ an empire of people to find decent fabrics and oversee construction methods that do not make my hind-end look unnecessarily larger than it already is.  I will not hold you responsible for what my mother and a permanent press cycle can do to a nice pair of trousers.

HOWEVER.  If you are a fashion designer, nee anything else, then all bets are off.  Jessica Simpson?  Valerie Bertinelli?   Nicole Richie?  I mean, people, PLEASE.  You HAVE people who DRESS YOU.  We all know you can look great.  If we had millions of dollars and people who dressed us, we wouldn’t ever in a million billion years buy things like corduroy chinos.  And left to your own devices next to the clearance rack at TJ Maxx with birthday money from your grandma, we know you’d look more suited for “The People of Walmart.”  So COME ON and GET OFF IT.  Writing your name in cursive and stamping it on rhinestone flip flops does not make you a fashion designer any more than Limited chinos made a dorky kid from small town America into Kate Moss’ competition.

Somewhere she is feeling so relieved and she doesn’t know why.

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So unless you live under a rock, you’ve no doubt been exposed to “news” about the Queen of England’s Diamond Jubilee, which, let’s face it, is a bit of a “glad you’re still alive” party.  While an accomplishment to live a long and healthy life, it’s not like England has defended itself mightily against worldly foes or that anyone has tried to take over the throne.  Although, I wouldn’t put it past that Fergie.  She’s a shifty wench, that one.  She tried to get her daughters to ruin THE Royal Wedding, after all.  Must I remind you?

Beatrice and Eugenie at Royal Wedding

Which brings me to Wills and Kate.  The only angle the American media has taken on this whole Diamond Jubilee thing is to interview the heck out of the newest royal couple in hopes they can sell three weeks of stories out of one interview.  Here are the “facts” I have managed to glean from internet tabloids:  William thinks of the Queen as “just” his grandmother (she is), Kate likes his grandmother and considers her a mentor (real hot gossip there… have you ever met someone who thought her husband’s 86 -year-old grandmother was a total shrew?  yeah, not many….unless you watch “My American Gypsy Wedding”…another post for another time), the royals approve of Kate (um, helloooo….see photo above.  As long as Kate wasn’t a street walker, they’d like her), Prince William wishes his mom could have met Kate and thinks Diana would have liked her (duh.), and the piece de resistance, Kate has been seen re-wearing clothing.  In pub-lic.  Sound the alarms.  If it’s time for true confessions: I re-wear ALL of my clothing and I sometimes don’t even wash it between wearings.  Kate probably wouldn’t either if 38 people didn’t do laundry for her. Also, I love my husband’s grandma.  These two facts have to make me future Queen of Something.  Bring on the parade.

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