So plan A didn’t work out as I hoped but all is not lost. When I realized I was not going to finish my sweater in time for the party on Monday, I was pretty lost as to what to do. I knew in all likelihood I would have to go out and buy something but what? I thought I wanted a pencil skirt and top but what kind of top? I imagined white shirt that I could cinch with a wide black belt. So off I went to find this miraculous outfit that was going to magically transform me into Cindy Crawford. Did I mention that some people have said that I have a well-developed imagination?
Women’s clothing manufacturers and designers are evil, evil people. It’s bad enough that the runway models are all women who are tall, thin, and unimaginably gorgeous. And it’s even worse when they try to include “normal-sized” women in their shows because these women are tall, toned and unimaginably gorgeous. I mean, the “over-sized” women barely have tummy rolls or flabby thighs and their ankles are always well-turned, whatever that means. Anyway, they hardly represent the “normal-sized” women I meet everyday. Which makes it agonizing for women like me who are short and on the plus side of plus-sized clothing to find anything that fits well.
The most egregious errors are made by the designers who include a petite sizing into their collections. Petite doesn’t mean blind. Neither does Plus-size mean blind. Both these groups have a hard time finding anything that resembles trendy or fashionable. That is unless you want to go into a specialty store and who can afford those prices. Is it too much to ask for a simple stylish dress that isn’t going to cost me my mortgage payment?
The petite-sized clothing I looked at in several stores didn’t resemble anything like the pretty, colourful, glittery dresses I was looking at in the regular-sized women’s wear. The Material Girl collection has some really nice things that I would have loved to wear but by the time I had the pants or dress hemmed all the design elements are gone. No point in buying a lacy dress when it hangs almost to your ankles and to have it altered would cost as much as making it myself. *facepalm* I can sew well, why didn’t I think of that before. Gah!
Oh, well, back to Plan B. I go out looking for something suitable. I find a really lovely white shirt, find a black pencil skirt and a nice waist cincher, go into the dressing room and that’s when reality hit. I’m only 4’11” and this look would look really good if I were 5’11”. The skirt was actually a mini but it just skimmed the top of my knee, not really a good look when there is a little bit of extra knee exposed there. The other problem was that most of these skirts seem to be made for women with the hips of a teenage boy. Plan A.2 is enacted. Find a pair of black pants.
Now that you would think would be an easy thing except that most pants now are slim fit and tight around the ankles, meaning for someone as short as me I either wear them bunched up, look for something suitable in petites or have them hemmed. Having a slim-fit pant hemmed, and I mean 4-6″ cut off, is like cutting your hair yourself. No matter how good a job you do something never looks quite right. After about a half hours of searching racks I finally found a pair that wouldn’t have to have too much cut off the bottom, take them to the dressing room and try them on with the shirt and cincher. Much better but not quite what I was aiming for and besides I always wear white shirts and I would look like an usher or waiter. Sit in the dressing room for a think.
Ok, Plan A and Plan B aren’t going to work. Time for Plan C. Plan C is to find a dress that will be elegant enough for the party without being covered in sequins, beads or glitter. Not good looks for me. I’ve tried them before and depending on the style I look like a disco ball or a Christmas decoration. I suit classic styles best so most of the party fashions now are a little…lets say they just aren’t my style. But I manage to find three dresses I like. The first two are body skimming until the waist then one has a dropped waist with a full skirt and the other just has a full skirt. Not bad. Certainly better for the hip but the bodice on one makes me look like I just had breast implants and the colour of the other makes me look sick. The third dress, however, is a winner.
This dress has a slim silhouette with a straight skirt. There are two little pleats just at the waist that add shaping. It has a square neckline but…Gah!…no sleeves. Oh well, I reason with myself, I can find a sweater or jacket to cover my arms. Now last year there were loose-fitting sweaters everywhere. This year? Not so much. All I wanted was a bolero style jacket or top. Look and look and look and finally at H&M I find a lovely cream-coloured crop jacket with a lace insert along the sleeve and the fronts. I try it on and it fits perfectly and looks great! Yay! Get it home try it on with the jacket and…frantically start pulling out clothes looking for a sweater or jacket that might work with the dress. And finally, looking through a box I hadn’t looked in for a year, I find a cashmere bolero with beading the same colour as the dress. The style Gods have certainly smiled down on me. Try it on, looks gorgeous. But wait. Why are there two huge holes in it?
Let me tell you this story about a woman who had a terrible infestation of moths. Moths that happened to like wool. Moths that looked at a beautiful cashmere bolero and thought, “Buffet!”. I thought that I had gotten rid of the moths but because they are crafty and will hitchhike a ride in bird food or seeds in general they are difficult to get rid of. So now I have a beautiful cashmere sweater that is perfect for the evening with two holes staring me in the face. Can I rip out some of the ribbing in the sleeves and mend the holes? Not without a lot of trouble and not invisibly. So I look around again and find the Whisper Carigan I made for the Yarn Olympics a couple of years ago. It’s a good match but the moths have eaten a couple of holes in it as well. Fortunately I still have enough yarn that I can mend it. So now that Plan C has been completed. Except that I’m really not in love with that look.
So Plan D. Go out early in tomorrow morning and exchange the cream-coloured jacket for something else or try to find a pattern for a shrug that I can knit up in a couple of hours. Yeah, well hope springs eternal and I never said that I lacked hope. So I’m sitting here looking at a pattern for a little bolero that has a cute little ruffle trim along the sleeves and edges. I have two choices of yarn, a ruby-red or a dark blue. The dress is a dark teal almost the same colour as the yarn in the sweater that started all this. Funny that. I do have a light teal yarn but I’m not sure how that would look. It’s just a bit darker than the cashmere sweater I so love – I know this because I tried to use it to mend the hole but it was one shade too dark and very noticeable – but not sure that I like it. I have a pale green necklace to go with the dress, it’s rather clunky and sits right on the collarbone so the colour choice is crucial. I kind of like the ruby since my glasses are the same shade and I have the flaming red hair. In any case, if I have any hope of knitting this I had better start now otherwise it’s up and out as soon as the stores open to find something for this damn party that I didn’t want to go to but got excited about as I was knitting the original sweater and now am starting to dread again.
Gah! Part of me is saying put the stupid dress and jacket on, wear it like a boss and don’t care if it’s not perfect and the other part of me, the perfectionist, prideful Leo part is saying, “You can’t go looking like a hobo.” Whatever I chose to do I had better make up my mind fast because I have to be there in less than 22 hrs. Do I really need to sleep?