My casual

Sweater: Jones NY ($25, Macy’s clearance)

Belt: Forever 21 ($5)

Leggings: Vivienne Tam via TJ Maax ($15)

Tunic: Thrifted, brand is “Taylor Swift for LEI” Possibly meant to be a dress, but not so much ($5)

Boots: Nine west outlet

Outfit total: $50

I’ve never done casual well.  I own maybe three pairs of jeans, but you rarely see me wear them.  I own a single pair of sneakers which I only wear if engaged in actual athletic endeavors (which, admittedly, doesn’t happen often.)  I often fell into the trap of having a casual uniform – for instance, there was a 2 year period in the late 90s where I’m certain I wore black ponte pants from Express nearly every day.  A year ago I decided to give up – I like dressing up, and who really cares if people wonder?  I did get a lot of comments at first, like “Where are you going,” and “Why are you so dressed up,” the last delivered in a vaguely accusatory tone.  After awhile though?  People got used to it, and now I’m just “the girl who wears dresses all the time.”  I rarely get comments anymore, but I did get comments when I showed up at a party in jeans!

Freeing myself from the idea that casual = jeans has made me realize that I do have my own version of casual.  Today’s outfit exists because I overslept, and had about 30 minutes to get ready.  And I’m getting a cold, so I wanted something snuggly!  I don’t think it’s an exciting outfit, but they don’t all have to be – I just want to look like myself, even on casual days!

I’ve read a ton of comments and articles about our casual society.   I wish that we placed a little more value on looking appropriate for the situation – I’ve seen way too many jeans at nice weddings.  On the other hand, I have no desire to head back to the days when getting dressed had a pretty strict set of dos and don’ts for women.  I’m a big proponent of the idea that it can be just as comfortable to wear a dress.  Seriously – what is more comfortable than a knit dress?  Nothing.  Which is why I have bought approximately 900 yards of pretty knit print fabric to make dresses this spring and summer (fabric.com has some really pretty ITY knits right now… I should have some coming tomorrow and I’ll post photos and thoughts, but there are some nice modern brushstroke prints, which aren’t that easy to find.)

The Simplicity dress is finished, and it turned out really pretty.  It may be a few days before I feel up to modeling(My current temperature:101, and I usually run low) and I’m also writing a tutorial on hemming full skirts, so expect that soon!