Sunday, November 27, 2011

Little Ballerina

I wore this outfit to work on Wednesday. Usually my work style is more what I would call "lack thereof," since I'm supposed to arrive around 6 in the morning and definitely don't want to waste even a minute of sleep fussing with clothes or my hair.

Last Wednesday was the exception: Since I only had to go in for one small task which would take less than 15 minutes, I slept in and took my time getting ready, even putting my hair into double buns. I traded my sneakers for ballet flats and topped it all off with a pink long-sleeved tee.

I wasn't really dressing to impress; I just wanted to get out of the jeans that define my workday wardrobe.

But when I got there, one of my coworkers absolutely astonished me with her enthusiastic praise for my cute outfit.

"You look like a little ballerina!" she said.

I guessed that was worth blogging about.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Looking sharp

Last week, I was invited to two job interviews—one at a place I would be tickled pink to work at, and one at a place I, well, wouldn't. However, the "wouldn't" interview came first, so I decided it would be good practice (actually, the recruiter who persuaded me to come in told me it would be good practice. I guess she was under no delusions about my interest level). I also decided it was the perfect excuse to buy new shoes! You might say I was trying to "pump" myself up for the interview.

Get it?

Get it?

OK, OK, moving on.

I was lucky that my shoe craving coincided with a 50%-off sale at my favorite local thrift store, because while there, I found the cutest pair of interview shoes you ever did see! They were a cross between – well, I don't know what – but they looked businesslike and sophisticated, with just the right amount of gratuitous laces, excessively high heels, and patent leather to say that even when I mean business, I don't really mean business. I consider them something like the mullet of shoes, except not ugly.

You'll notice that they feature stiletto heels. They are, in fact, my first foray into the world of skinny heels. Although I have shunned these impractical footwear features for my entire shoe-buying life, and, in the past year, derided them with as much derision as I could dredge up, I finally gave up my antagonism in the face of 5 dollars. That's right. These puppies were priced at 10 dollars and discounted to five! Such a deal is surely worthy of a little open-mindedness.

Of course, as with anything Unfashionistic, that cheap price came at a price. They were a little worn down. Before they were ready for the runway, I had to trim off some hanging threads, polish out a few scuffs, and employ my secret weapon: black permanent marker, to disguise some of the places where the black cover had come clean off. But when they were done, they were a paragon of fabulous shoes.

By the time my "wouldn't" interview rolled around, I was actually excited about it, just so I could wear my new shoes. Of course, the interview didn't lead anywhere like a new career, but it served its purpose: I got practice, in interviewing as well as in walking around on spike heels. They weren't, actually, any more difficult to move around in than any other pair of ridiculously tall shoes—although I nearly did break my ankle stumbling into a grate on the sidewalk, as was foretold.

After my interview, I
went to a place where my
camera was not. Thus, I
was obliged to take my
photo using the old
phone-and-mirror trick.
I apologize.
However, the second interview – for the job I really wanted – would be the true test. For that interview, I pulled out all the stops, even brushing on a little eyeshadow and mascara. I wore the same skirt suit I wore for the first interview, but traded the houndstooth jacket for a black one (one I bought and blogged about long before I was The Unfashionista) because the houndstooth one made me look fat. And then I set out to meet my destiny.

I learned one lesson whilst en route: If you feel the need to wear thigh-high nylons instead of regular pantyhose (the advantage to the thigh-highs is they are a lot less trouble when you have to use the toilet), make sure they are securely attached before setting out. I had to detour to two bathrooms on the way to my interview to adjust my stockings before I could get them to stay put.

But the shoes—the shoes! Did they succeed? Did they make my interviewers fall in love with me, as I had fallen in love with them (the shoes, not the interviewers)? Well, they scheduled a second interview on Monday.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Bug Spree

No bedbugs gonna slow me down! In the past 4 days, I've come up with two new Unfashionista posts! In reverse chronological order, here is the first.

Yesterday was a special occasion. My brother was in my area just for the weekend, and I was going to meet up with him and some of our coworker-friends from times gone by. I suggested Dave & Busters, and he agreed!

Now, for this extra-special night on the town, I couldn't wear any of the usual balled-up-in-a-bag ensembles that have been my sole clothing options for the last several weeks. I had to do something new, something exciting!

I dug around in the bottom of my extra-large Ziploc and lo! I found the never-worn luna-moth-green sweater that I'd bought this summer for a true steal of ... you might want to sit down for this ... forty-nine cents! Yes, I had found it on the clearance rack at Marshall's, marked down to almost nothing because several of the seams were coming out. I loved the color, and I knew that a little TLC would make it almost like new.

The only problem with this sweater is its cropped length, which means I'd be obliged to again try my unskilled hand at ... you might want to sit down for this, too ... layering! Fortunately, I had saved a plain black tank top for just this purpose when I packed up all the rest of my summer clothes, and wearing it under my cropped sweater produced just the right effect.

By some miraculous stroke of luck, a pair of earrings (that I had splurged six dollars on) exactly matched the color of the sweater! The earrings just happened to be in the shape of butterflies, proving that while bedbugs may be the bane of my existence, other bugs can be the perfect addition to a cute outfit.

An outfit so cute that I wore it again to work today, and received 2, count 'em 2, compliments from my coworkers.
I am also experimenting with "dog as fashion accessory," in the mode of Paris Hilton.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Some odds and ends to tide you over

I realize I have been a neglectful media maid, and have allowed my online presence to fall into disrepair. As I explained to a fellow blogger, it's hard to be Unfashionable when you're living out of plastic bags. But I do have a few minutes, and few photographs of Unfashionista projects I started this summer, before bedbug fever hit me (see Val's Galorious Galaxy for all the details). I've been holding onto them for various reasons, but it's time to let them out into the light.

Well, one of them at least.

There was a time when I was not confident about my clothes. If I dared to wear anything that deviated much from the preppy norm, I was consumed by self-consciousness. Today, after several years of compliments on my style, I am more daring. I don't even think twice about throwing on a zany outfit like this one:
This ensemble consists of the cheap yellow shirt I bought at Shopper's World, the salmon skirt I made from an old comforter, a pair of athletic/knee socks I bought at Walmart for 2 dollars, and my knockoff Chuck Taylors from Payless Shoes.

I would ordinarily wear shoes that are a little more feminine with an outfit like this, but I was going to work, so practical flats were key. Following work, I met my boyfriend for an impromptu lunch out. On our way back home, he informed me that our waitress had given me the goggle-eyed once-over when we walked in the door.

Oh. I guess the colors were a little out there. I guess the overall look wasn't at the height of fashion. But whatever. Any kind of reaction is a success!