Monday, May 11, 2020

Second Chance Black, Plus Garden of Enjoyment Retrospective

Of course, our gorgeous hot weather from this past weekend was too good to last. Now it's muggy, windy and overcast. At least it's not snow - I know some of you have had flurries over the past couple of days! 
A Monday is as good a day as any to give this black skirt a second chance, and I'm also busting out a pair of seldom-worn shoes, including a retrospective of all the times I've worn them.

  • Blouse - See By Chloe, thrifted; first worn here in August 2019 with creamsicle dots
  • Skirt - Ports 1961, thrifted; last seen here in April 2019 with black and white and gold
  • Shoes - Garden of Enjoyment Rita, Fluevog; last seen here in September 2018 for a trip to the dentist
  • Jacket (below) - Dolce & Gabbana, vintage 90s, thrifted; last worn here in April in my last outfit of the fall/winter season 

I love an unusual pattern, and I have a wardrobe full of them! Since the skirt is plain black, I happily ransacked my closet looking for a pattern worthy of it.
I love the mixed patterns in this silk blouse - it's almost a leopard print, with insets of black and white.The striped sleeves are polyester and are pleated.

The skirt is 100% silk with an interesting "leather" finish (it's very rustle-y); it's lined with sheer silk that peeks out at the hem (check the stair picture) and at the paper-bag waist.
That little bit of peach you see at the bottom is a vintage full slip that I'm wearing underneath, in case of the office AC being too cold. It was, and I felt very clever.

Pockets! Wearing this skirt again, I fell in love with it all over. It's a keeper.
It's a gorgeous, quality piece - it would have retailed for well over $500 new (new skirts on their site are over $1,000!). I paid $16.95 for it, heh heh.

I added a jacket today due to the goofy weather.
Would I need it for sunblock or to keep me warm? As it turns out, neither.

The stuff:
I've realized that with the reduction in my work hours, my feet are healing up from wearing "real shoes" all day, every day - and I'm definitely moving around less at work than I used to. Some of my higher heels don't hurt my feet anymore! This is cause for celebration! These have never been uncomfortable shoes, but I've been looking askance at that heel, and wondering if their time with me is up. We'll have a little jaunt down Memory Lane shortly...

Round bling:
Even the studs on the shoes match.

  • Belt - Emmanuel, vintage 80s, thrifted
  • Leather/steel cuff - Rimanchik
  • Silver/acrylic cuff - Alexis Bittar, consignment, Vancouver
  • Onyx/silver ring - Toccara, vintage fair
  • Lapis lazuli ring - Wendy Brandes
  • Earrings - thrifted

I also liked how the snakeskin belt looked over the skirt's waistband.

Garden of Enjoyment Retrospective!

I had lots of fun revisiting my red shoes last week (here), and I haven't worn these shoes much in the last few years, so here's a retrospective of my outfits featuring them.

First outfit, from July 2013. I bought the shoes in June 2013 online from Fluevog for $199.00. This is before we had a Fluevog store in Victoria, so I never saw these in person or tried them on (very risky!). I was nervous, but I wanted them SO BADLY. I was hugely relieved when I got them and they fit perfectly.
Of course, I had to wear them with the Spanish Ladies dress. I should do a retrospective of that - I've had it for 10 years this month!

I noticed as I grabbed all these pictures that I've often struggled with styling these shoes. They are a challenging, fashion-forward style, with the open, pointy toes, the big piece on the vamp, and the wrap that goes around behind the curved heel - these were not "in style" in 2013, although they look very trendy to my eyes now.

This is one of the better outfits, just bookending a simple black skirt. This is the end of my red hair phase, which lasted many years.
That's my vintage Gianfranco Ferre 80s wool skirt; I still have that belt too. This is from July 2013.

And I wore them again in August 2013, to go to L's 20th high school reunion in Powell River.
Sex-ay! I still have the belt, the cuff and the evening bag. I danced all night, till 2am in these - they are a lot comfier than they look, even for a 3" heel.

I (nearly) always wear these shoes with bare legs, so they've mostly been worn in warmer months.
This is in September 2013. That skirt was leather and really nice, but it didn't have a slit and I found it hard to walk in. I still have that leather jacket!

Zoiks, this is a Look! This is what I wore for L's birthday party in June 2014.
I still have the belt and earrings. I gave the dress to Cat, and she wore it at the last Victoria Film Festival Gala.

July 2014 - I'd just bought this handmade blouse at a vintage fair. I wish it had been better quality - I love the look.
My arms look so bare without my tattoos.

I...yeah, I have no words for this horrific outfit that I wore in September 2014.
All those colours went together, but not much else. I still have the obi and the necklace.

A rare wearing of these in cold weather - I wore nylons with the shoes in January 2015.
 You might recognize that burgundy satin embroidered jacket - it's a fixture in my wardrobe. A blonde streak has appeared in my hair and I changed the part to the opposite side.

I miss this striped dress - it looked so good. But it got very pill-y after wearing a few times.
That's 5 years ago, in May 2015.

This was the one and only wearing of this beautiful silk vintage 80s dress, in June 2016.
I sweated profusely in it, and it shrunk badly when I washed it. Sad.

In my pussy-bow blouse phase, in June 2017. Growing my hair out!
 I tried mint green. Nope, but I hung onto that brooch.

You might remember what I wore to Sarah's baby shower in April 2018.
Everything there's a keeper! Getting some length on my hair, and starting to get lighter.

And then the last outfit, in September 2018. I wanted to like that blouse, but I really didn't.
Much lighter hair there, too - it took another year for my gray to grow out completely.

I didn't wear these shoes at all in 2019, but having worn them again, and loved them, I think I owe it to these shoes to create some worthy outfits this year!


  1. Those blue shoes are great for so many reasons. Number one, they're blue. Number two they do all the right things to make feet look good which is a feat (lol) as some shoes seem designed to accentuate how awful feet can be. Number three, the heel makes your great legs greater. 2019 was robbed.

    You've always been fashion forward with your hairstyles, but my personal favourite look is your current one. I think the longer hair is softer and very flattering. Since we've been locked down I haven't been able to get my hair coloured and I've got quite the silver stripe coming in. I was hoping this might be a quick process to actually grow it out, but it sounds like it could take a while - you mentioned it took you a year. I'm curious to see what an all silver me will look like and if I don't like it - presto chango.

    Don't let anyone step on your blue suede shoes and keep well!

    1. They are pretty amazing shoes. I'm mad at myself for not wearing them last year, but I was having a lot of foot issues, Nana.

      I like long hair on me too. That may change - I've always changed my hair up. Ooh, are you going to give it a shot? I dyed my own hair a pastel lavender over the darker dye for a year, then as it faded, I let the roots grow out. It was nearly invisible and took a long time. It's easier to grow some out, then chop it all off, but I wanted to keep my length. As I always say, it's just hair - it grows back.

      Thanks, Nana, I won't!

  2. I think the blue shoes are fab and love that you've given us a flashback. My favourite outfit of all has to be the blue top and red leather skirt - wowee, aren't you one hot mama!!!! It was great to see all the colour and hairstyle variations as well.

    1. Thanks, Anna! I loved that top and wore it for years. The red leather skirt was one of the best I've ever found - it got stained, unfortunately. Sigh. All the good ones get ruined.

  3. You are doing so well. Love the trip down memory lane. As you can guess I love the simpler outfits best (pencil skirt, blue top) but that is me. You make the most of your stuff by reusing them all the time in new combinations. I will have to do at as well now that I have less money to spend but I suck at it. Oh well, practice makes perfect.

    1. Yes, practice is what it is, and willingness to fail. There are bad outfits, but I learn from them, and try again. Some of my best outfits have come from trying something different. Thank you, Greetje!

  4. I am amazed as always!!!

  5. I like when you look back at the way you've worn things, they are great shoes and it's nice you can wear them a little more now! Just like you're finding with the heels, I've found I'm frequently over extending myself and aggravating my knee injury when we are at home - I ran around in the park with the kids on the weekend and was in so much pain afterwards - but because I'm not doing as much walking around it healed up quicker than expected, considering I haven't been able to travel to my physio for a few weeks! :) There are some benefits to life at home! :)

    1. Thanks, glad you enjoyed it, Mica! I like looking back too. I'm really happy about my feet, but a little worried that once I'm back at full-time hours that my issues will come back. That's great that your knee is healing up quicker!

  6. I love this outfit! that blouse is a beauty, the pattern on the sleeves and those black tassel ties, you can see that it must have cost a bomb originally. The skirt is a fabulous shape and those wonderful shoes are just perfect with both.
    Loving the trip through the archives, love the sexy look for L's reunion, bet he was the envy of his classmates! The stripes and the Pucci-esque silk dress both stand out as well, what a shame neither stood the test of time. Thank goodness for blogging to record our clothes for ever.
    So pleased to know that your feet are learning to behave. xxx

    1. Thanks, Vix! I know, it would have been a pricy little blouse originally. See By Chloe is not cheap! I love the skirt, and am glad I gave it another shot. Yes, I wore it for him so that he could show me off, ha ha! It worked! I like looking back at these pictures for the reminisce over long-gone pieces. Some of them were soooo good.

      I'm pleasantly surprised about my feet!

  7. What a lovely outfit, Sheila, I'm glad you decided to give the skirt a second chance. The blouse is amazing, what a wonderful, joyous pattern, and obviously I am loving those black tassels! I'm loving the shoes too, what a wonderful colour and shape. And what a fabulous retrospective! My favourite outfit is definitely the one you wore for L's high school reunion, closely followed by the one with the blue and white pussy bow blouse combined with the red skirt. I've just brought out some of my higher heeled Summer shoes. Not sure how I will fair. I've been mostly wearing my Birkenstocks and wellies! xxx

    1. Thank you so much, Ann! You can't go wrong with tassels! Yes, that was one sexy outfit! I stood out in the crowd, for sure! I like that dotted pussy bow blouse too - I miss it, but it never stayed buttoned shut! Good luck with your feet - you might want to practice in your heels!

  8. Lovely outfit, such interesting textures and details and lovely mixed patterns blouse, and those shoes are really fab!
    And also lovely to see this amazing recap, so amusing to see the changes in your hairstyle and so many different outfits!

    1. Thank you so much, Monica! I enjoy doing these recaps - I'll have to make them a regular feature for some of my older items. :)

  9. Red Leather Skirt would look great with matching Jacket..

    1. I no longer have that skirt, but thanks. The matching jacket would have had enormous shoulder pads, I'm sure!

  10. I'm happy for your feet. We need them to feel good so you can continue to wear stylish shoes. :)

    P.S., I was looking at my first blog (on LiveJournal) and saw a post from ten years ago listing my favorite bloggers. You, of course, were on the list. Ten years!

    1. Haha! We do! Although you can find stylish shoes in all heel heights these days.

      OMG, I remember your old blog!! Has it really been 10 years??

  11. What a amazing shoes, love that color. And those heels are freekng good! It's so nice to see all these lovely outfits, with all the different hair styles. Love the pencil skirt look!!

    1. Aren't they cool, Nancy? I've never seen anything like them before. Glad you enjoyed the retrospective. It's fun for me to look back too!

  12. T's interesting that you wore the shoes more times with skirts than trousers; and only with trousers once, I think. They are lovely shoes and I really enjoyed the retrospective!

    I am loving the Spanish Ladies dress!

    1. That is interesting - I hadn't really noticed that! I own more trousers in the last few years than I have in DECADES, Vronni. I have always preferred skirts. But it's a good point - I'll have to do them with some more pants.

      Glad you liked the retrospective! I will definitely do one on the Spanish Ladies dress - it's one of my favourite wardrobe pieces ever.

  13. I love your outfit with the blue blouse and the black skirt. Nice to see the blue touches. Those heels are fabulous. It was great seeing all the ways you have styled them. So many inspiring ways to wear those blue heels.

    1. Thank you! It was a very classic outfit (not really my everyday look, as you know). The blue shoes are truly amazing, aren't they? Thanks, Ivana!

  14. What a fantastic unexpected blessing that your feet are feeling somewhat better as of late. I think it's so important to acknowledge the positives - be they surprises or more predictable - that come our way during these continued days of global challenge and difficulty.

    I just adored the flashbacks to outfits from past years. Some of them immediately reminded me of when we first met online. How time flies!

    Autumn Zenith 🎃 Witchcrafted Life

    1. It was totally unexpected and a nice bonus! I'm going to be a lot more careful about heels in the office, especially as things start to open up again. We have to look for that silver lining, right?

      Thanks! Glad you enjoyed it - so did I!

  15. Those are pretty fab shoes, and worthy of more outfits. I like seeing the various hairstyles and colours you've had over the years. Too bad about that blue patterned silk dress - it's so pretty! I agree with a lot of the other commenters here that the outfit you wore to L's reunion was a winner.

    1. Thanks so much, Shelley, and I agree - I will need to make an effort to wear them more! I enjoy the retrospectives too. It really makes me realize how long I've been at this!

      I know, that dress just KILLED me. I really loved it. Agreed, I planned for that to be a killer, sexy outfit - L really wanted to make an impression and I helped!

  16. Check you out ! I enjoyed seeing how you have worn these shoes. So many happy an colorful outfits, always so very creative. Cheers my dear She, for many more fabulous wears to come.

    1. The retrospectives are fun - I'll have to do more of them. Thanks, honey!

  17. What fun to see all the way you've styled those shoes - they've done really well. I look forward to seeing how you style them in future.

    1. Thanks so much, Mim! They're awesome shoes and deserve to be worn more.


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