Friday, November 20, 2020

Two-Fer: Dinner Dress, a Wee Shop; and Velvet Plus Embroidered Flashback

Hello, my friends! Our province has just mandated more restrictions - no more gatherings or visits with friends or non-household family, and masks are now required in all public spaces. I know that me, my friends and family have been doing our best  to stay safe for the past month, but the numbers on Vancouver Island are poised to increase and we needed to crack down.

I had a last-minute dinner date on Thursday night with my former boss and now 22-years-strong friend, Tammy. We just made it under the wire - I came home and found out about the new mandate from L.

I'll take the sunshine while it lasts...

Tammy is a friend who just "gets" me - she shares my deep love for fashion and clothes (we check out each other's outfits very carefully) - and we spent a leisurely 3 hours at Il Terrazzo, one of the swankier restaurants in town. Of course, I dressed up!

  • Dress - Proenza Schouler for Barney's, thrifted; first worn here in August with blue shoes
  • Turtleneck - Jacob, thrifted; last seen here (2nd outfit) in  September layered under a dress
  • Boots - Steve Madden, vintage mall; first worn here (3rd outfit) in October with leopard in the park
  • Coat (below) - Forever 21, thrifted; last seen here (2nd outfit) in February to the theatre

I knew Tammy would love that I found Proenza Schouler, so I had to wear this lovely silk dress. 
I straightened my hair - it's fun when I have a bit more time. 
I absolutely love this dress - it's made of two different patterns, and you can see how they are flipped from to back and on the hem and cuffs. 
I wore my tall boots for leg coverage and for walking. 
Showing off my snakeskin patterned tights. I have a half-slip on with this, as well as the layered thin glittery black turtleneck. 

Masked up - snakeskin from Mom. 
I can hear Ann squealing with glee - it's the Grape Ape coat! 
I also wore a navy blue faux fur head wrap, but it was too warm for all but the walk to town, so it got shoved in a bag. 
I'm fully bundled up, and ready to go, including some music for walking. 

  • Head wrap - thrifted
  • Gloves - Roeckl, consignment
  • Purse - Danier, thrifted

The stuff: 
The boots are wonderful to wear, but as always seems to happen, I ended up needing to take them off (a balancing act!). 

Bold bling: 
All my favourites, again to show off to Tammy. She appreciated it all - don't you love a good audience?

  • Cuff/necklace - Robert Larin, vintage 70s, vintage mall, gifts from L on separate occasions
  • Fang bangle - Alexis Bittar, consignment, Sidney
  • Earrings - Tania Gleave, Granville Island
  • Lapis lazuli ring - Wendy Brandes
  • Silver/onyx ring - Toccara, vintage fair

I went downtown a bit early, with the intention of having a nice browse through Flavour Upstairs. I spotted these wonderful blue trousers right away! 
They are cropped and a straight leg.

They're by J. Crew and they were $34.99. 
Their trousers retail for $120-150 and up. 

They have two big front pockets on the hip. 
They haven't even been opened up! I will always open pants side or front pockets - I need to jam my hands somewhere! 

These are from Fall 2016, so they are 4 years old. 
The backside of the fabric reveals that they are indeed woven, not printed. I like that detail. They aren't lined, though, so they may be too cold for this season. 

I already have a fabulous Welsh wool cape...
But I tried this one on...and fell head over heels in love! 

The middle section is nearly a completely separate garment.
This makes for a nice thick fit, with double layers of fabric all around. 

There's one pocket, which is lined. 
The rest of it is unlined, but it's just as beautiful on the back as the front of the luxurious woven texture. 
The arm-holes are bound and match the edging on the rest of it. 
I'm pretty sure it's from the 1960s - look at that zipper pull! And it was only $49.99? Take my money! 
The tag says "A Dafydd Snowdon Design by Craftcentre Cymru Wales." The squished lettering at the top is "Medium".
And the back of the label confirms that it's all new wool, and was woven in Wales. Have any of you UK readers heard of Dafydd Snowdon? I couldn't find any background on him.

Flush with my success in finding these treasures, I realized I still had 30 minutes before our reservation, so I wandered up Johnson Street until I saw a sign in a local boutique Reunion: "Shoes 20% off" - uh oh. Danger!

As I was scanning the store for interesting shoes, I found a box full of wooden hangers. 
Only $5.00 per bundle, so I took them all, at $20 for 18 hangers and 6 pant-hangers. They are for L, to hang up some of his good clothes (he has mostly wire hangers), not for me My closet is full - no more hangers is the rule. They're living locked up in my closet for now, as a particular little kitten is fond of rubber bands. 

As I was filling my arms with hangers and cackling, "I want them ALLLLLL!", I stopped in amazement. 
Oh! Oh my! Oh my freaking goodness! 

Silver boots! 
Silver leather lace-up boots with cushy insides, and a zipper up the back (with a pull just like the cape!). Even the laces are leather! The front is "tongue-less" so my legs/tights show through. They are jaw-droppingly gorgeous.

They're by Eclipse and were $195, marked down to $95, marked down to $75. 
Like I was going to say no! 

I got home late, and hung out with L for a bit, then planned my outfit for today.
I've been wanting to wear this jacket since I've seen it in the Flashbacks for other things - and it will be getting its own retrospective in a bit. 

  • Velvet blazer - Le Chateau, consignment; last worn here in March to get groceries
  • Dress - Betsey Johnson, consignment; last seen here (2nd outfit) in December 2019 on another Friday
  • Shoes - Iona Poser, Fluevog: last seen here (2nd outfit) to meet John Fluevog in December 2019
  • Cape (below) - Coracle Clothes, vintage 60s, pass-along from Sheila A; last seen here in October

The dress is very swingy, drapey velvet - with pockets!
I just needed a showcase for the jacket. 
Just your basic casual Friday. 
Swoosh Factor 8 (good for spinning). 

Dress alone. 
It has a wide neckline (it's a V in the back), but comes with bra-strap holders - classy! 

Masked up - I picked this teal one from Mom. 
And ready for the elements. 
It's been in the 8-10 degree range, with clouds, sun, wind, and rain. So, a typical fall. 

  • Beret - consignment
  • Gloves - Danier Leather

The stuff: 
I love that these shoes are wool covered leather, and note the brocade heel. I've added in padded inserts to make them slightly more snug. 

Minimal bling: 
With all that embroidery on the jacket, I didn't need much. 

  • Belt - Club Monaco
  • Amethyst/gold ring - Frances Jewellers, c. 1965, Dad's
  • Earrings - Kate Spade, consignment

Flashback: Le Chateau Velvet Embroidered Blazer

I first saw this jacket in the early/mid-00s when I met up with some of my friends from high school - Lisa J. had become a buyer for Le Chateau, and she was wearing this. From the first, I coveted it and went looking in the Le Chateau in the Eaton Centre downtown (as it was called then; it's now the Bay Centre).
I think you can see why! It's practically crusted with embroidery. I first showed it here in February 2011 for the 4th Annual Wardrobe Challenge put on by Jane of The Small Fabric of My Life (she's back blogging, by the way! Go say hi!). 

At the time, I noted: 
I stalked this when it was in Le Chateau a few years go, but it was $99 and that's just too much for a jacket, no matter how much I love the black velvet and amazing embroidery.

When I saw this in a consignment store a few weeks ago, I had to have it! I got it for $40 (I asked for a discount because I'm a regular customer - it was marked at $50).
This was before I took pictures of my new and new-to-me pieces, but I got it at Rich Rags - I've been shopping there for at least 10 years. 

I took some newer pictures so you could see all the detail and the lovely colours. 
The collar and lapels (the back of the blazer is just plain velvet). 

And the lower part and around the pockets (real pockets!).
We have blue, green, purple, gold, caramel and brown - great colours that go with a lot in my wardrobe.

So, let's take a look at how many times I've worn it in the nearly 10 years since I bought it. 

I wore it twice in February 2011 for Jane's Wardrobe Challenge. 
With a yellow shirt, teal kitten heels and jeans! I never wear jeans! How unlike me.

And again with the same kitten heels and a long tulip skirt in caramel. 
The jacket is the only thing that's lasted, although if you note the camisoles I'm often wearing under it, this purple one shows up over and over - and I still have it! 

Here we are in April 2011 - I'd just started doing the Stair Pose, and have not quite mastered it. 
The shoes, skirt and sweater are all long-gone. 

November 2011, with orange tights and an orange suede skirt, which I kind of wish I still had (it's been gone for more than 5 years). 
Vizzini is only 6 months old there - he's so tiny! Still underfoot, though. 

I've always been big on belting this blazer. 
Showing my purple tights and caramel boots (those were crap quality - I've upgraded since). This was in December 2011. 

I wore it twice in January 2013 - and this is not the greatest outfit. 
The blazer looks better done up to show off the symmetrical embellishment. 

This outfit, also in January 2013, kicked off a run of wearing this skirt and blazer together.
This is a formula I came back to four times. 

What happened to 2012? I was in the middle of my ginormous year-long wardrobe challenge: the 30 For 30 for 12. The final month was January 2013, and I'd saved the blazer until then. 

Oh, my Fly London shoes - I'd forgotten about these. They were very high.
This was in October 2013.

I love how certain colours just pop when paired with the blazer. 
The caramel is an excellent accent too. This was in November 2013. We saw those shoes in Flashback here

And there they are again, in March 2014. 
That was a silk Hugo Boss/Boss Orange skirt. I didn't like the shape of it. 

My purple leather skirt is still in my wardrobe - here it is in November 2014, and here's the Flashback on it. 
I spy a kitty tail!

This suede skirt was thick and massive, and Vizzini chomped a bunch of the fringe off - I did not keep it (I gave it up a couple of years ago). I loved it, but I'd worn it enough - I only paid $10.00 for it at a vintage fair. 
This was in December 2014. I still have the boots, which have yet to be Flashbacked. 

Deja vu! Same boots, same skirt, same blazer. 
This was in March 2015.

Don't be scared, it's still me - I'm just wearing a white shirt. This was in December 2015. I did a Flashback on the shoes here
My magnificent vintage Versace "mom" jeans! I haven't worn them in a while (they are really tight with no stretch), but I still have them. #clothesgoals.

We saw this January 2017 outfit in the Flashback for these shoes (here). 
So what happened to 2016? No idea, but this is still technically a wearing in my fall/winter season. 

I went to this well again in November 2017. This is probably the final wearing of this skirt. 
Yup, we've seen all that before. The only thing that's changed is my hair! 

I wore it with my favourite gold skirt (it'll come out to play soon) and my tall boots (Flashback here) in November 2018.
I see a kitty hoping to dash into the hallway.

Just like with the purple cami, if you scroll back, you'll see that I wore this green sleeveless blouse under the blazer many times. 
This was in October 2019 (must wear that skirt again), and that's the same belt I wore today. 

Speaking of skirts to wear, this one will make an appearance at some point. 
This was my Clothing as Armour grocery-shopping look at the start of the lock-down, in March 2020.

And now, Mr. Vizzini would like to sit on my lap. 
"It looks soft and warm."

It is! There will be much cuddling this weekend. I'll be back on Sunday with tales of adventure - until then, take care, be kind, and be safe! 


  1. Shiela, where do I start? Love your velvet dress and silver boots! Oh my goodness, my eyes popped out of my head looking at those boots. Glad you got a dinner date in before restrictions are in full swing. X

    1. Thank you so much, Jess! The boots are simply amazing, no other word for it. I know, I'm so glad we were able to connect before the mandate.

  2. Hi Shiela,
    LOL I was waiting for you to pose “which outfit do you like best?” Even without the question, here’s my choice ;) Your dinner date outfit and the gold skirt outfit - both wowed me. I like the pattern, shape and color of the first dress, it is quite interesting and eye catching. As for the gold skirt, what’s not to like!

    Have you considered any wardrobe challenges for these next few months after the holidays? Hmm, am now going to peruse your past posts on challenges for inspiration!

    Will the new restrictions have an impact on your work? Whatever the case, enjoy your walks, Vizzini cuddles, and hanging out with L!

    1. PS I also find the jacket paired with the luscious velvet dress a soothingly gorgeous classy look. And I came up with a wardrobe challenge for myself! The combo of being retired and the pandemic make it way to easy to live in jeans. My challenge: wear every item in my closet once without any repeats. What, if any, qualifiers would you put on the challenge?

    2. Ha ha, you're always welcome to weigh in, Laurie - sometimes I forget to ask. :) I agree, I like the gold skirt too.

      No, I hadn't thought about it - they are quite time-consuming for posting, and my Flashbacks are taking up a lot of time right now.

      No, I can still go into the office, as can the folks who are already there - we're just not allowed to gather.

      Thank you! Ooh, I love it - I wouldn't add any qualifiers, but I would advise you turn your hangers around so that you can tell what's yet to be worn.

  3. Squeal!!!!!
    Well, it wasn't only the magnificent Grape Ape I was squealing about, Sheila! I did squeal at that fabulous Proenza Schouler dress worn with those over the knee boots too! And I think I need a glittery black turtleneck too.
    I'm glad to hear you managed dinner with Tammy before the mandate became ... err ... mandatory! Seems we're in the same situation, only we cannot even go out to dinner with the two of us, as everything's closed! I do hope your new restrictions are helpful in containing the virus!
    I am swooning over those cropped trousers and ... WHAT? You found another Welsh wool cape?? I am ever so slightly envious! As for those silver boots, pass me the smelling salts :-)
    Friday's outfit is so luxurious, and it's always lovely to see your other delectable Welsh wool cape. And those wool covered shoes!
    Wishing you a great weekend and lots of cuddling with Mr. V! And L., obviously :-) xxx

    1. Ha ha! Thank you, Ann! Glad I've got you squealing! :) I love this glittery turtleneck - it's a very thin viscose and is great for layering.

      I'm also really glad - she doesn't see a lot of people, and it was so good to catch up. I really REALLY hope that this will reign things in for COVID numbers here.

      Thank you! I know! Another Welsh cape! I felt very lucky! The silver boots are definitely swoon-worthy.

      Thank you! Aren't the wooly shoes fun? Happy weekend to you, Jos and Phoebe, my dear friend!

  4. Hi there Shiela, so much to like! I love how you wore that dress and again you give me ideas! I need to wear dresses more but I am a bit lazy in winter. The jacket with the embroidery is absolutely stunning and in the flashback again you have been clever with which colors you pulled out. Those boots are a scream and I bet you will have fun with them. Take care and as usual love how different you look every day. By the way your hair looked great straightened. Shaz xx

    1. Hello, Shaz! I love wearing dresses all year round - you can hide a multitude under them, ha ha! I love the embroidery on the jacket - so pretty. I adore the silver boots! So fun!

      Thank you - I like changing it up. I like my hair straight too, thank you, my dear!

  5. I love your dinner outfit - the coat and the dress are so fun together and it's nice you were able to enjoy your time together before the restrictions came in. We were going out to a birthday party when they announced new immediate restrictions that meant the birthday party was unable to go ahead - when we listened to the raidio on our way to the party after swim lessons we only caught the end of the news where we missed the big announcement, so it wasn't until we got home that we realised groups over 10 were no longer permitted - none of us knew, oops! Back to normal now though with restrictions as we don't really gather in big groups usually, and it's up to like 100/200 people now. I hope things get relaxed for you again soon!

    I really like your second outfit too with the velvet dress and blazer - that's such a pretty combo!

    1. Thanks so much, Mica! I'm really glad we were able to have a nice dinner out, and just in the nick of time. Oh no, that's really bad timing for you! I'm really happy to hear you've got things back to normal in Australia - I've been watching the numbers there.

      Thank you!

  6. Isn't it good to meet up with someone you love! Or restaurants have been closed for 6 weeks already so no dates there. That cape is amazing! I truly love it, so unique and chique. Can't wait to see how you will wear it. And those silver boots.... I what can I say, are words even necessary. Have a fabulous Sunday!

    1. It really is, Nancy! Our restaurants and shops are all still open, just mandatory masks in them now (finally). Thank you - I love the cape (both of them!). The silver boots rock my world. Happy weekend, my dear!

  7. So nice you were able to meet Tammy before the new lockdown made it impossible. Spending time with friends is good for the soul. Finding someone we can share our interests with is wonderful.
    That pattern dress you wore is so pretty. It looks amazing worn with those high boots. The bag you choose is adorable as well and your face masks are always very chic. I enjoyed your flash back. Have a nice Sunday.

    1. It really is, Ivana - and it's so nice to have someone who is so interested in fashion in my life too!

      Thank you! I love high boots with a short hem - it's a look I've always loved. Thank you! Happy weekend!

  8. Fabulous outfits as ever Sheila especially that first dress with the silver hem.

    I don't know Dafydd Snowdon but I do lead yoga retreats in Snowdonia most years (three cancelled this year!) so will ask when I go next time.

    Your lockdown restrictions sound like ours at the moment but we are hoping for an easing in early December.
    But who knows!

    1. Thanks, Jane! Oh, how cool - thanks! We'll have to see how our numbers go - with Christmas around the corner, it's going to be tough if they get extended. I won't be able to see my mom. :(

  9. I hope Vizzini got all of the cuddles!
    That Proenza Schouler dress is wonderful with the polo neck jumper, kick ass boots and fabulous fake fur.
    Good to see you in your Welsh wool cape - I still haven't worn mine this year - and your new one is a fantastic find. there were hundreds of mills in Wales producing Welsh wool back in the 1970s, I rarely come across the same label twice. Sadly most have gone now but there's a renewed interest in heritage textiles and a few have started back up in business.
    Loving those silver boots and the embroidered velvet jacket would be very welcome to come and live in my wardrobe if it ever felt like a change of scenery!
    I hope your lockdown does the trick, the cases here seem to be leveling off slightly after a fortnight but I expect the government will bow to public pressure, relax the rules for Xmas and it'll be rife again in the New Year. I'm staying away! xxx

    1. Oh, so many cuddles, Vix! Thank you! I love my Welsh cape, and now I have TWO! I have seen a lot of Welsh woolens actually. We also had mills in Canada, so I see Canadian-made wools a lot too. Thank you - if I ever tire of the embroidered jacket, it's yours. I can't wait to wear the silver boots!

      Thanks, me too - I'm concerned that it'll be extended over Christmas and New Year's, but it will probably be safer for us all in the long run. My only regret is that I wouldn't be able to see my mom if that happened.

  10. I'm so glad you were able to meet up with your friend. This pandemic and the resulting restrictions make each real interaction so much more meaningful and special. I was lucky to be able to see my dad and my sister this week for what might be the last time this year as we are about to plunge back into the "red zone" tomorrow. We are down to our immediate bubble again.

    I think you must have horse shoes hidden on your person! How else to explain your constant good fortune in finding such amazing things, such as those silver boots; embroidered jacket and so many of your other wonderful finds.

    1. Me too, Nana. It's been so hard to see friends, and I'm so glad I've gotten to see all of my closer friends in the past few weeks - it will be hard not seeing them for so long. Good luck with your restrictions.

      I must indeed! I sometimes feel the Fashion Gods have smiled on me! :)

  11. That first photo of you is lovely - the way the light hits your face, and I love the straightened hair. The colour and length is really great on you!

    LOVE the double velvet outfit - the dress by itself is fabulous on you as well. I love a good silver boot, but they are hard to find. I just gave away one pair that I couldn't fit into anymore, and the silver finish is peeling off my knee-high ones, sigh.

    Yep, tighter restrictions are in place in Ontario now too, but I wasn't seeing many people anyway aside from my Saturday masked outings with my friend Heather. We're getting lots of snow today too, which makes me even less inclined to go outside.

    1. Oh, thank you so much, Shelley! I love velvets, but the riding up of them can be a challenge - luckily, this outfit didn't have too much of that. I am amazed by the silver boots, and I'll be wearing them soon, for sure! I hope the finish stays nice on these.

      It's really rough - ack, but at least we haven't had snow!

  12. Oh my! I loved the blue patterned dress in the first outfit - so pretty and I loved the sleeves. YOur newly found Welsh cape is beautiful and so is your blue one. I have a similar coloured one to the one you've just bought but I would much have preferred a blue one! I also loved your new to you trousers - more lovely blues...

    And as for the velvet dress and that wonderful embroidered and velvet jacket it was wonderful. And the shoes - simply gorgeous.

    Loved the flashback you've certainly got your money's worth out of that jacket!

    Sorry to hear about your increased restrictions - hang on in there.

    1. Thank you, Vronni! I'm thrilled to have two Welsh capes now! I like that they are in completely different colours.

      Thanks - I always feel cozy in velvets. I have gotten excellent wear out of my jacket - I love it. And thanks again, my dear. We will get through this.

  13. I've got to say that that purple velvet dress is astounding! It looks aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaamazing with the blue cape! So beautiful! The Chateau velvet jacket is really beautiful-what a special piece it is! There's something so wonderful about embroidery- you know that that garment has had care taken over it!

    1. Thank you so much, Kezzie! I agree, I love garments with that extra embellishment.

  14. Sooo true about opening up any and all pockets that can be. I do the same as well - we can't afford to sacrifice any potential hand warmth during our lengthy Cnd winters. 😄

    Autumn Zenith 🎃 Witchcrafted Life

  15. Terrific outfit with lessons in it for me. Thanks, teacher!

    Yes, pandemic restrictions are isolating us further but are necessary to contain the virus. I'm glad you squeezed in the visit with your old friend.

    Having people who "get" us is vital to happiness. It certainly is for mine. This weekend I had a wonderful, long Skype chat with another Canadian friend (Suzanne) which was my first video-chat for social reasons; my prior ones were for work, which is different. Being unable to travel, I'd enjoy chatting with you someday by video. Holler if that interests you.

    1. Thanks, Ally! I know the new measures are needed, but it's frustrating, since me/my friends were already following the guidelines, and it's "the others" who haven't been who've done this to the rest of us. Ah, well, time is elastic and it will pass.

      It really is! How lovely to chat with Suzanne (of course, I remember her from the meet-up and I loved her blog). I've dropped you an email - I have Zoom and would love to chat.

  16. Oh my a Proenza Schouler dress! You lucky sod. It looks terrific. Love your styling with the high boots. And finding silver ankle boots.... I am looking for them as well, and these would be so good. Mind you, a slightly lower heel would make them perfect.
    I will go through your posts quickly as I am so far behind. You post so frequently woman, I cannot keep up.

    1. I know, what a score that was! Thanks so much, Greetje! I am so in love with the silver boots - I hope you find a pair! Yes, a lower heel would have been better for me too, but *shrug* these will do for now.

      Sorry, honey! I am just full of posts. :)


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