On Dresses and Being Worth It.

This has been going around teh intarwebs, and it wasn’t until I commented on this repost that I realized I had something to say about it.

Background: The Bloggess, who if you don’t follow on twitter, go do it now. I’ll wait. You back? Okay, so the Bloggess recently posted about a red dress and how she wants it even though she has no excuse to buy it, nowhere to wear it, and nothing that matches it. She is much more eloquent than I and so you should read her words. But the upshot is this: you’re worth it. Do things that you want to do just because you’re special and you deserve to do them, even if it makes other people think you’re crazy or weird.

My Take: We’re all worth it. This is me just before the [shm]Emmys one year. But it could be any year. It’s a simple black dress that I got because I love the jewelry that I wear with it. It’s hematite, it was my grandmother’s, and it’s so huge and ostentatious that I’ve always thought the simple black dress complimented it perfectly. And whenever I wear it, I feel awesome. Its got tulle between the outerskirt and the underskirt which makes it poofy like Cinderella’s dress (I always wondered how she sat in the pumpkin while wearing that, but I guess the same way I do…), it’s floor length, which makes me feel regal, the bodice fits perfectly, and the skirt is large enough to accommodate my natural stride. I really do love this dress and wearing it.

But I wear it (or another black dress) every time I go to a dress-up event. Black tie means black dress, right?

Years ago, I was shopping with a friend and found a simple black strapless not-quite-mini dress. It also came in electric blue. I had a terrible time deciding since I only had enough money for one (well, really I didn’t have enough money for either but could only justify buying one) and my friend told me that having a little black dress was a necessary addition to my wardrobe. So I got it. And she was right, I often wear it, and it’s great to know that its there. But every once in a while, I wish I had the blue one, too. It was an unmistakable blue that required courage to wear; it was “Bitch, I’m wearing blue, what the fuck are you going to do about it‽ Blue.” And there are some times when that’s just the sentiment I’m looking for.

I was at a black tie event earlier this year, in my black dress, with DH in his tux, and a group of others in tuxes, muted silvers, and champanges. We belonged; we blended. Then black tie Sam Elliott walked by (it was not actually Sam Elliott, but he was sure channeling the energy of every character Sam Elliott has ever played). He had a black cowboy hat, black leather cowboy boots with white (maybe silver) thread detailing, tux pants that fit like jeans, a giant silver belt buckle, bolo tie, and a shirt-and-jacket combination that was the unholy union of a tuxedo and a rodeo. He was amazing. Elsewhere, a woman drifted in and out of the black-and-white crowd in an embroidered green dress. She looked like an emerald on a black velvet pillow. We were the pillow—and so was just about everyone else.

And I wished I had that electric blue dress.

I am not someone who often likes to stand out. Certainly not for my fashion choices. But I’ve gotten to the point that I’d like to have a poppy red, emerald green, or electric blue dress in my closet. Even if I never wear it. But if I own it, I just might.


  1. I loved that post by the bloggess. She’s wonderful. And I love this post, too. I don’t think I’ve ever had that perfect dress, but I do have a wonderful suit. And I think it’s the fact that it’s a suit that makes it so wonderful. On the rare occasions that I go to church with my family, and everyone is decked out in their dowdy Mormon dresses, I have this awesome pant suit. It’s beautiful and brown. It fits me perfectly. It smells like my favorite perfume. It’s my suit, and I love it. I think I’ll weep the day I have to give it up.

  2. I’ve never read the Bloggess, but I knew about this dress because I follow the blog of the woman who photographed her in it. Small Internet?

    The post depressed me and so does your commentary and also AYW’s comment. But it’s not you; it’s me. It’s that sense of, I never do stuff like that and fuck pretending that I ever will. But I cheer on your future effort at emerald green, which is my favorite color.

  3. I bought myself a dress like that recently and I’ve only worn it once–I believe John & I were celebrating his finishing NaNoWriMo. It’s pearl gray (not even my color), but I adore the cut and shape of it. I love knowing that it’s in my closet if/when I want to wear it…

    [Edited 05/20/2010 by xJane to fix & embed broken link.]

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