Friday, 3 September 2010


Working in clothing retail for two years offered me all sorts of insight into the shopping habits of other women. One of the most interesting phenomena was the occasional shopper who wanted to buy the same piece in different colours. Often these women knew exactly what their style was. They showed no signs of insecurity when investing in one piece in several colours that they knew they were going to wear a lot. Being more of a mood shopper myself, I only have a couple of items like that in my wardrobe. They are tank tops or t-shirts, and then there is this dress.

You might remember it from last year, in black.

It is an odd dress. In the online store picture it looked like this:

Imagine my surprise when I actually got my hands on the thing. Clearly the model in the picture is way shorter than I am: the droopy part in front reaches hardly to my waist, and there was no way I could ever wear the dress as it is shown here. I turned the loop of dead fabric into a shrug, and as it turns out, the dress has become one of those throw-on-when-in-doubt articles for me. It is comfortable, easy to take from one season to another, and it can be taken from daywear to evening with a pair of heels.

I actually really like the idea of having a good piece of clothing in different colours. For me, the trouble is actually knowing when I come across a versatile piece. I know what I like, but it is hard for me to predict whether an item will be worn enough to justify the investment of buying it in multiple colours. Sometimes the oddest thing becomes a wardrobe staple, sometimes even a timeless classic ends up staying at the back of your wardrobe.

Dress: Cheap Monday, 2009
Belt: second hand, old as dirt


tigerteacher said...

I would buy this in multiples too - it's a great dress! Fits great and seems like something to wear yearround with our without tights, sandals or boots, minimal accessories or piled on accessories. Seems like a good investment to me!

Charlotte Holmes said...

Wow--the difference between the two colors is enough to make the dress look almost like a different dress, but it's incredibly flattering. I can see why you bought a pair.

Sometimes I'll buy, or make for myself, the same item in different colors. If I find a piece that's comfortable, flattering, and reasonable, it seems to make good sense--especially cardigans.

Anonymous said...

Wow, what a great dress. I like it much better the way you are wearing it.

I know what you mean about not knowing which pieces will become favorites. I have some slightly odd things that I wish I could wear every day. (And I'm not a quirky dresser; but some things just look more "normal" if they suit the person wearing them.)

Jen said...

That dress is amazing!! What lvoely draping - you look gorgeous in it :)

Alterations Needed said...

The dress looks way better on you and the way you styled it that on the model.

I buy multiples a lot, but because I'm 4'11", and so have an awful time finding items that fit well. When I do, I hoard the suckers like mad.