Monday, July 11, 2016

Brown Beige and Blingy Reprise

Early on in my Unfashion career, I posted a look I called "Brown Beige and Blingy." Five years have passed since then, and since today's outfit could easily be classified under the same title, let's look at the new with an eye to the old!

Blast from the past
Back in 2011, my outfit featured a ribbed wife-beater-style tank top (I am sorry that I don't know a less insensitive term for this type of shirt, but that's what the boys called it back in 2000, and that's the most unambiguous term I've ever heard for it). That was the predominant type of casual tank when I posted that look (I remember Old Navy once held a big 2-dollar sale event for them, and sold out before I got there). Nowadays, if you must wear a tank top, it is generally billowy near the bottom, and certainly not ribbed, so I wouldn't be caught dead wearing a wife-beater in public. In today's outfit, I have chosen a sleeveless button-up blouse, sensible and work appropriate. Because the top is extra long, I've left the bottom two buttons undone to better let it conform to the flared shape of the skirt underneath.

Speaking of the skirt, that's where most of the "blingy" portion of this outfit comes from, as it is heavily embellished with sequins. Oddly enough, my stance on sequins has completely reversed. In 2011, I stated that the sequins on my tank top made it "a little too flashy for my style"—these days, flashy is my bread and butter, and I almost can't resist every iced-out garment that comes my way. The skirt in my old outfit was the plainest part of it, and in fact, is still a staple in my wardrobe today, though the sandals and tank top long ago left my service (sandals broke in Indonesia, tank top probably got sold?).

In today's outfit, I am not wearing sandals (although I considered it), but a pair of brown ballet flats. I have had these flats for years—long enough that they are starting to look a little shabby, and I can't believe that I've never pictured them in my blog. Here, take a good long look.

As you can see, they bring their own bling, in the form of jewel-studded buckles on the toes.

The shoes are an interesting symbol of how my tastes have evolved since starting this blog. Five years ago, flat sandals like the ones in my original post were a diversion from my usual non-work footwear: flip flops (Today, flip flops are scorned, and I am proud to say I have purged my collection of dress-up flip flops, replacing them with nicer buckled sandals). At that time, high heels were a novelty deserving of an entire post about the thinness of their heels or the height of their platform. By 2016, high heels are such an integral part of my daily wardrobe that I feel like I have to defend my decision every time I wear flats.

But the times, they are a-changing again! Even though I try not to do too much walking in my stilettos (I commute to work in flip flops or sneakers and keep a pair of nicer-looking flats at my desk for midday errands), I'm still concerned it's not enough. I can't help but keep reading things about how bad heels are for your overall structural health, even if you don't wear them that often. So, not wanting to end up with hammertoes, bunion surgery, painful corns, or prematurely blown-out knees, I'm making a conscious effort to wear flat or low-heeled shoes (with a 2-inch rise or less) twice a work week. 

Last topic! Although unrelated to my mostly jewelry-free past,   I do want to share one unique feature of this outfit—another necklace hack!

Another way to shorten your necklace

Just as you can use a collared shirt to hide the way you've extended your necklace, you can also use it to hide the way you've shortened your necklace. This is a good temporary fix that is less labor-intensive and bulky than knotting it.

Just use a safety pin to attach the two pieces of necklace together at their desired length.
Then twist the trailing ends around the joined chain a few times, maybe loop them back up into the safety pin if they're long enough, then...
Tuck the whole mess under your collar. Admittedly it's not gorgeous from the back, but it makes for a perfect front view!

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