There are nine million bicycles in Beijing
Katie Melua – Nine Million Bicycles
After Monday’s flared skirt and blouse combo I was looking to try another outfit in that same vein, and this is what I came up with.
The skirt is of a flowing teal blue, a color that makes me think of the Mediterranean Sea and sunshine. The top never fails to remind me of my successfully completed cycling course (for adults!) and the joyful rush I felt the first time I realized I was riding a bike. Accessories are pretty classic today – the earrings play off the blue color scheme, and the ring works with virtually any outfit.
The shoes, ah! Despite the heel being a little thinner than what I recently prefer, it’s not too high and nicely attached on top. The whole shoe is very comfortable to walk in and I have spent several hours in them during an evening without dying to remove them by the end of the night. The laces add a playful touch and I’ve always liked a criss-cross pattern on the front. I’m usually cautious with pointy toes, put with these shoes the effect doesn’t seem severe. The first time I wore these, actually, I was at a party and nearly slipped in someone’s…well, ironically, I was on my way to the bar simply to get a glass of water. But the main point of this tiny, unspectacular story is that I didn’t slip and that the shoes were easy to balance in.
And to clean and disinfect afterwards.
Ready to go.
“I think you should go with the red. It’s the color of confidence!” Legally Blonde is another quoting staple I frequently refer to.
To be honest, I think any color you wear is the color of confidence, as long as it’s a color you like, one that plays up and brightens what you feel are your best points and otherwise makes you feel however you want to feel that day. Being a redhead, it took a while for me to find a way around red. Working it in to my wardrobe initially seemed a bit of a challenge, but I kept coming back to the idea, and also some shades of red I’d see either in pictures or on other women repeatedly appealed to me. Another friendly helper along the way was the book How to Be a Redhead by Adrienne and Stephanie Vendetti of howtobearedhead.com, in which the sister authors bust the myth about us gingers not being able to indulge in playing with this particular color.
I love how the essential coolness of blue balances against inherent warmth of red. The flared skirt jumped out at me from a rack and wearing it is a pleasure. I’ve mentioned before that I’m still experimenting a bit when it comes to blouses, so this one is meant to be worn with skirts, at least in my case – I’m tall and the blouse is on the shorter side. If I wear it with trousers, I’ll end up tugging on it all the time and defeating the purpose by simply not being myself. For this outfit I simply tuck the blouse in the waistband of the skirt, which sits a little bit higher, adding that feminine 1950s vibe, or at least that’s what I tell myself.
The shoes are very comfortable pumps that make for good walking around the city and don’t make me balance instead of progress. I’ve come to the conclusion that a thicker heal, when wearing higher shoes, does it for me. Rounding off the accessories is one of my favourite necklaces that works both during daytime and as a more dressy companion to an evening outfit. I remember when not so long ago statement necklaces were mentioned everywhere, and suddenly all my usual haunts for buying costume jewelry were full of them. At first I wasn’t interested, but then I was inspired by some gorgeous chokers in a few old movies and a friend’s stylish accessorizing. So voilà. I think I would have still liked this one, though.
Ready to go.
Jewelry: Bijou Brigitte
This is not the outfit choice I expected for today, but it’s a little frisch and not quite summer dress weather, so why not.
The attempt at a bucolic design has had co-workers looking at me closely in the past, probably in an attempt to locate the cute houses or make out the sheep. Who doesn’t like some sheep scattered on a hill? The blouse is very comfortable and it’s fun to spend the day wearing a motif I have yet to see on someone else in my surroundings. The earrings and ring are in keeping with the colour scheme which includes grey jeggings. And since I’m wearing a blouse, why not add these very stable black pumps for full (not too) formal measure.
Might put the pumps on in the office, though, and walk to work in other shoes.
Ready to go.
Ring and earrings: I AM or SIX.
Well, a hoodie-wearing mermaid popping out of the ocean for a stroll among humans.
Legs are required for jumping, dancing, strolling along down the…what’s that word again? Street
I simply cannot resist. This whole outfit has taken on a harmonious blue colour scheme, which is fine, oceanic, maritime associations and all that. I just love that dress, it reminds me of the determined dreamer in me and, without fail, what it was like to discover The Little Mermaid as a small child, the deepening fascination with fairytales, stories and stories behind stories. I immediately knew that this was my Disney animated feature, and a few years later, during the part of my childhood I spent in the States, I was very worried indeed that the video (yes) was proving hard to track down. Both the film and video release dates had already passed and I was feeling bereft. When we finally did find a copy, my waiting was rewarded by the fact that the video was inclosed in a bigger plastic casing, which was more durable in eager childish fingers than the thinner cardboard ones.
If The Little Mermaid will follow the current trend of Disney’s live-action remakes of animated classics, I’m expecting a very emotional time. I just googled some of the rumours surrounding casting decisions, and all I have to say is please, God, no…
All this from one dress! The hoodie is also from my recent flea market jaunt in Kiel, and the earrings were bought while waiting for my train home from Düsseldorf. I seem to be experiencing a multiple ring phase.
Ready to go.
Hoodie: flea market in Kiel.
Rings: Bijou Brigitte.
Not, not over someone, thankfully.
I have a long day ahead of me and the prospect is making me shudder slightly, but what are situations like these if not an occasion to whip out some comfortable (and fun) shoes?! Having a good footing, literally or physically, not just metaphorically or mentally, is crucial to how I get around my city, my work, my travels and my life. I remember wearing proper sneakers during one of my favourite long walks once, instead of the sturdy, but thinner low sneakers I usually put on, and it made a noticeable difference to my feelings of comfot and how long I could stroll around for. Obvious and well-known facts, but even these we sometimes have to discover for ourselves.
I was recently told by another woman that I was brave, because she never would have trusted herself to wear such shoes. I was left feeling flattered and wondering whether she secretly wanted to.
Pop (explosion?) of colour on the bottom, reserved tones on top, and like I said, it’s going to be a long day, so bless the jeggings. The top is from my mother – we share a liking for versatile basics.
What kind of a week would it be without a red flower-patterned dress? It is spring, after all. This dress is special to me. My mother bought it years ago in New York City. It’s made from excellent cotton, red background, short sleeves, blue and white flowers that look like they’ve been taken off a canvas painting and delicate white lace edging around the collar. I remember looking at her wearing it when I was little and walking hand-in-hand together after she picked me up from school during spring afternoons. I would pick flowery outfits to match and feel what I thought was grown-up as we walked home together.
The dress was originally long, all the way down to the heels, and after my mother gave it to me fairly recently, I asked if I could shorten it somewhat, et voila. It lives on, just updated a little. It’s still as comfortable as ever and I feel cheerful when I wear it.
I already written about my love of playing with combinations of red and blue, so here goes! Dark-blue leggings and a short blue cardigan in a shade similar to the blue flowers on the dress. In the case of combining things with a patterned piece of clothing, everything I need to know for inspiration is already on it. I just pick a colour to work with, be it the background or the pattern elements themselves, and the harmony usually takes care of itself. Otherwise, obviously there’s a variety of reliable choices for cardigans, trousers, scarves that almost always works with a patterned item: black, navy blue, grey, white and denim.
Small pearl studs are a tiny tribute to the feminine style of the dress and the way it reminds me of the 1950s. No red lipstick this time, there is more than enough red in this outfit, just the Happiness in a Bottle lipgloss.