Saturday, January 8, 2011

What I will do for a friend....

I am a jeans and yoga pants kind of gal.

This is what I wore out today.....except I did wear real shoes.  Not house slippers.  

But since my dearest friend in the whole wide world is getting married at the end of this month, I wanted to clean up a bit.  Purchase a......(dear me, this is hard to say).....dress.

And so I headed out today with the goal of buying myself a dress, D a new tie and N a dress (the boys will be staying at home with a sitter while us bigger folks attend the festivities).

I went to JCPenney and searched for what seemed like days.  The dresses were either too fancy or too bag-like or too old-lady-ish.  I saw some 2-piece suits, one in a really great apricot color, that I wanted to try on, but I wandered around aimlessly for awhile trying to decide what type of blouse one wears under them.  I eventually went up to a stranger who was dressed far more fashionably than I (on a Saturday afternoon), and she said a "shell."  I had to scroll through the archives of my retail employment memories to understand that she wasn't talking about crustaceans.

I took a size 10, a size 8 and a size 6 into the dressing room with me.  I knew the 6 was a long shot (this was the apricot suit), but I thought what the hell?  The size 10 skirt fell to the floor; the 8 drooped to my knees.  The 6 fit better, but I still looked like Frumpy McFrumpelsteen.

So I said, "Forget suits.  I'm gonna look for a skirt and top."  I found some skirts I liked but didn't know what type of blouse would look good with them.  And, of course, there was no one on the sales floor to help me at JCPenney.

I headed down to New York & Company and found about 3 dresses on a rack and, again, not a single salesperson.

It was at this point, feeling pretty desperate, that I went to Ann Taylor Loft, a store that I normally avoid like the plague.  The clothes are gorgeous; the prices give me hives.  As soon as I walked in, a sales person asked if she could help me.  I think I may have started weeping and said something like this.....

My best friend is getting married at the end of this month, and I need something nice and weddingish to wear, but I hate shopping, and I was just at JCPenney wandering around in circles, not sure whether things were dresses or just tunic tops, and I don't know what looks good together, and I'm not even sure what size I wear.  I never dress up; I mean look at me.  I need to be on that "What Not to Wear" show.  Will you please pick some things out that would look good together?????

And so she loaded me up with a bunch of stuff and got me settled in a dressing room.  One dress I happened to pick out looked good but seemed too big, so I asked for a smaller size.  That size still seemed a little frumpy.  I dropped down to the next size and decided that I would take the dress no matter how much it cost because
1.) I liked it
2.) so help me god I don't want to do this anymore today or next weekend or ever again if I can help it because I was effin' exhausted.

Apparently, my desire to be comfortable means that I normally buy my clothes about 2 sizes too large.  The dress that actually fit me properly today---a size 4.  WTF?

I asked if they sold shoes at the Loft and was told no, which left me stewing about purchasing some nude heels.  But then one of the nice sales-gals who helped dress me suggested I go to Bakers for some boots.

After paying half my mortgage (ok, not quite) for the dress and sweater at the Loft, I marched right down to Bakers and said something like this....

I just bought this dress at Ann Taylor Loft and they said I should come down here and get some boots in a grey or beige color, so will you pick out some boots that will match this here dress because I don't know what looks good with anything.

Thirty minutes later I have new boots to go with my new dress.  Another half a mortgage payment gone. But it is totally worth it because other people dressed me which means I probably actually look good.

I was heady with excitement as I called my friend to share the miraculous news that I just dropped a big ole wad of cash on clothes for her wedding, and I think I might actually look like a put-together kind of gal for once in my life.  Having known me since we were 14, she knows that I am tight as hell with money and hate dressing up.

But I also told her that this marriage better last because I won't do this for wedding #2.
She was a doll and told me I could just wear it again if that happens.

(N and G were so wound up seeing me in a dress and boots that they wanted to get all gussied up too.)

G in his sister's Jasmine wig, her dress and his snow boots.  What a pretty fella!


Anonymous said...

Carrie - you look fabulous! The clothes from Ann Taylor Loft are worth it!! I resisted at first, but the clothes always fit great, and the salespeople are amazing. They also run really good sales - I often go straight to the clearance racks in the back.


Keri said...

I love your shopping story - I can envision the scenes with you walking around JCP and then, defeated, begging for help in the other two stores.

You look great, and the best part is ---- no sharp spikes or bubble wrap that will interfere with my dinner enjoyment!

Oh, and love the Jasmine wig. Keep that one for the "embarass the teenager" file in 10 years.