Sunday, October 16, 2011

Most Fun Saturday - Dresses

Saturday was an awesome day! First, I spent the day with my niece, Zoe, who will be 12 very soon (going on 17, you know how it is). It was a lovely sunny day, so I wore my new Desigual dress. I like looking at the search words in the Stats to see how people find my blog. Aside from the weirdness of "Yukon Cornelius," the pervy-ness of "veiny feet" and the usual "Sheila Ephemera" searches, I get a lot for "winterizing summer dresses."Well, here's a good example. This is a cotton dress, in a t-shirt material. It's skimpy-ish on top and lined in the same fabric, so it will stick to tights. This is also a tricky dress because the dominant colour is white - good thing it has some bold pattern and darker colours on it!

The weather was good - cool but sunny - so I could get away without tights since I wore boots, but I could have worn a nylon slip under this and added tights. I layered a thin long-sleeved tee under it, added a statement necklace (to hide a glue stain, hee), and worn my white leather jacket and burgundy fingerless gloves:
Zoe and I went for breakfast and then shopped till we dropped! Such fun.

The stuff:
I am a sucker for Desigual, but as with all of my clothes I am really fussy about cut, patterns and fabric (not to mention price). This dress rang all my bells, and goes into the collection along with this dress and this jacket. It's almost cool enough to wear the jacket again! I can't wait!

Fortunately, this dress was not as expensive as my other pieces - it was regular $110.00, marked down to $85.00, plus another 25% off, so I got it for $70.00 including taxes. Not too bad. I probably won't get a huge amount of wear out of it until spring, but it'll be a great summer dress next year!

Desigual always does wonderful details on their clothing. I love the pattern and colours. There are brass sequins sewn on the leaves, which are also outlined in wooly thread. Some of the flowers are embroidered in, and it's hard to see, but there is a green metallic dragon embroidered on the front:
I loved how the necklace looked with this ensemble.

Dress (Desigual), tee (Plum), jacket (Le Chateau, consignment), gloves (Parkhurst), boots (Hispanitas, consignment), necklace (Plum).

I was able to get home in time to have a nap, then I cleaned and tidied the house in preparation for my birthday party that night (I admit I did a half-assed job of it and kept the lighting low). The party was awesome, and I got lots of cards, gifts and hugs from my dear, dear friends. The evening ended at 4am, after the last 8 stragglers ordered pizza.

Anyway, I was so excited to wear my vintage 70s dress:
The colour is sort of a burgundy-coffee shade, and it's 100% polyester (double-knit!), however, this is not that thick, awfuly polyester you usually associate with the 70s. This is silky, thin and wonderfully drapey, which you can see in the top part of the dress. It's also incredibly well cut. Look at those full sleeves, tight cuffs, collar, and the buttons that go nearly to the floor!

A shot of the back:
You can see the drape well there. It came with a sash belt, but I wore that in my hair instead. I wore my mom's gold chain belt from the 60s, and my bigass cheap earrings (they only come out for parties!).

I felt like I was wearing pyjamas all night!

The dress is by Ports International, which was originally a Canadian company. I remember their stores in the malls up to the early 90s, and that they sold cruisewear and very high-end clothing. Here's an obituary about one of the founders, which talks about the quality of one of their blouses: "the fabric, the buttons, the tailoring, how the collar opened a certain way." I can certainly see that in this dress. Even the buttons are a lovely thick abalone.

It still has the original label:
And I can see by the sizing that it's pre-modern sizing, since it fits me perfectly and I'm a modern size 6. It also still has its washing instructions - I am assured that it's machine wash, tumble dry! Yay! Good news, as I spilled some food and wine on it. Heh.

And you may wonder how much was this glorious garment that I found on the vintage rack in the thrift store? Well, wonder no more:
Yup. $10.50. Score!

Speaking of scores, I have been dying to wear these amazing shoes since I got them. I'm not usually a "saver" of clothing, but this dress and these shoes required a special occasion!
Oh, nom nom nom. I could just eat them up. The rope espadrille wedge, the crackled creamy gold finish, the gold hardware. And yes, your eyes do not deceive: they are Coach. Not just handbags! They make shoes!

Check out the fabulous details:
All leather, these fit like they were made for me.

I got these at the same time as these pumps. It was a massive sale at the Bay a few weeks ago; all summer shoes on clearance for either $19.99 or $29.99.
All the proper marks and stamps.
And they were made in Spain.

Here's the receipt:
Regular $169.99 - yay! I danced the night away in my cheap ensemble. All together, my entire outfit was under $50.00.

Dress (Ports International, vintage 70s, thrifted), shoes (Coach), earrings (Aldo Accessories), belt (60s vintage, Mom's).


  1. Normally, I'm not a fan of the disigual prints, but I love this one! I think maybe because it has more of a solid background. In any event, I love it and hope that you don't keep it squirreled away until spring!

  2. Two beautiful dresses, the Desigual is a gorgeous deal. A little pricier than some of your frocks, but certainly a unique find. I love the colors of it, and like that you added turquoise into the mix.

    Your vintage dress is soooo glam. I can totally visualize you holding a cigarette in one of those holders and lounging like an old hollywood starlet in that!

  3. You look gorgeous in your 70s maxi! I've posted a link on my FB page for all to enjoy!

  4. Beautiful, both dresses! Love the whole birthday look, incl those fantastic new Coach shoes. Wow.

    One strange search term on my blog stats: "gray haired grandma who wants to swap photos." I'm offended. I'm not a grandma : >

  5. I love your birthday frock :-). I tell you, if I'm ever in Canada, I'm going to hunt you down and make you take me shopping :-)

    Happy Birthday :-)

  6. I LOVE that vintage dress! It's not often that you see a full length shirtwaist, much less a vintage one. That color is yummy and it looks great with your complexion. Plus, great Coach shoes! I am a Coach lover from way back. (saved up for my first purse in high school...and I still have it!)
    I have tried on their shoes, but haven't found a pair with the perfect storm of price/style/fit yet. Kudos to you!
    Again, hope your birthday was divine! (sounds like it was...)

  7. I am kind of a Desigual junkie. Love that dress, and the vintage gown is just amazing. I'm always shocked when I find really nice-feeling polyester, and I'd be even more shocked if I found it in a 70s-vintage garment, since I was there, and polyester mostly sucked horribly in the 70s.

    Happy Birthday!

  8. Ooh, I have a white leather jacket too. Twins!

  9. Cara, I agree, some of them are just a hot mess. I like a fairly regular pattern. I have a feeling it won't get much more wear this year, though.

    Megan, thanks! I don't mind spending a bit more here and there - I figure it all balances out: a $9 dress here, a $70 dress there...Ha! I used to have one of those cigarette holders!

    Jodi, aw, thank you so much!

    Patti, thank you! The shoes are pretty awesome. Ha! That's a lovely search term!

    Tat, thank you! Totally, I will take you shopping!

    Rita, thank you - I know, I was totally wow'ed by the quality of it. It was a lovely birthday, thank you! :)

    Ana, I love their stuff, especially the really expensive high-end stuff (sigh). I remember the awful double-knit polyester of the 70s too! So scratchy!

    Wendy, of course you do!

  10. Love the 70's dress--realy takes me back! It's probably Qiana, I loved wearing anything made out of it back then, especially knee socks (several pairs of which save my feet from blisters in boot camp), totally comfortable and easy care.

  11. Mamafrog, thanks! I remember Quiana - I think it's a little thinner than this material, but I could be wrong.

  12. I absolutely adore the long vintage dress - you look amazing - hope you had a wonderful time :)

  13. Thanks, Lorena, I love it too - it's so comfortable, and yet still elegant. A great time was had by all!


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