Connect the Dots

When I was a kid, connect the dots was my favorite amongst all the games and puzzles in my Highlights magazines. There was something magical about transforming what looked to be a bunch of haphazard dots into a recognizable image with just the trace of my pencil. Although I have outgrown those puzzles, I still have an affinity for dots.

The dot design has been around since medieval times. It gained popularity in the mid 1800s when polka music was trendy. During this music and dance craze, everything and everyone and their mom was decked out in dots, and the name “polka dots” was coined. Anything with polka dots instantly conjures up a retro vibe, and reminds me of the 1950s, when it gained widespread popularity again.

I don’t think my outfit lives up to the polka, but rather should be more aptly called wallflower dots. It lacks the boldness of the polka dot and isn’t quite equally sized and spaced, but has a charm and daintiness about them none-the-less. Because of the relatively neutral nature of my patterns, I was able to mix and match them, and layered in different fabric textures as well. The dot theme is constant, but you will have to look closely to see. I threw in a cheetah print scarf to add an organic element to the otherwise structured graphic dots. The studded booties also make for an interesting 3-D take on the dot and are an edgy contrast to the overall feminine look, topped off with a retro cloche.

I promise to feature more polka dots in future posts, but don’t connect my dots please.

1 LBD, 5 Days

A $90 Chanel Suit? Unfortunately it was not found by yours truly, but instead by everyone’s favorite blue-haired lady.

In The Simpsons episode, “Scenes from the Class Struggle in Springfield,” Marge discovers the ultimate Maxxinista find while shopping at a fashion outlet: a Chanel suit for $90. She wears the suit around town while doing errands, and runs into an old acquaintance. Due to the status symbol of the suit, the acquaintance invites her to join a country club. In order to stay stylish and fit in, she alters the suit into different outfits for each event she attends with the elite crowd. In her madness to fit in, she accidentally ruins the suit during her final alteration.

This episode inspired me to conduct an experiment; I also wanted to take my Nautical by Nature a step further. No sewing machine was involved, only some clever accessorizing, belting, pinning, and tucking. One little black dress, worn on five consecutive days at work. That’s right, you heard me. Would I fool anyone? By Wednesday I had gotten some oatmeal on the front of my dress, but there was no turning back. I wasn’t about to block out an entire week’s worth of outfits just to try this again.

At the end of the week, no one had said anything to me. This could either mean that my co-workers:

1. Did not notice because they don’t pay attention (very likely)

2. Did not notice because I totally fooled them (I wouldn’t fool a true fashionista!)

3. Noticed, but did not say anything in order to be polite (in case I was suffering from financial hardships)

There was no way to get a definitive answer without asking people, so that’s just what I did. “Did you notice anything about my outfits this week?” Some of their responses:

“What should I have noticed?”

“No, was I supposed to? I always think you dress super cute and trendy.”

“Not off the top of my head.”

Meanwhile, there was only one person who knew I was planning to do this wear-it-everyday idea, yet she did not catch wind of the week I actually wore it. And the cherry on top of the cake: someone actually complimented my Friday look and gushed, “I love your skirt!”

I hereby declare Operation LBD a success! Next up: Operation Launder LBD