Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Private and Public Dressing

A lovely older woman from my church, a long time widow,  moved into a high rise senior community about a year ago.  We had worked on our church newsletter for years and would go to lunch afterwards.  When I asked her about the change in living from a small home and yard to the high rise life she said that overall the change had been of great benefit.  She was 86 when she made the move and acknowledged that even a small house and yard required constant upkeep and vigilance.  But the change she didn't expect was that she had to put on her "public face" as soon as she left her front apt. door.  She noticed that she had more "public" encounters with people just going to the elevator or running downstairs to mail a card and said that it was a little more tiring than she had expected.  We felt a common camaraderie about enjoying our own private space, private time and hobbies without having to "make nice" to the outside world except on our terms and schedules.
Here it is, only day two of Me Made May and I'm thinking about the concept of our private dressing versus our public dressing.  Ah, the private wardrobe idea....I wish it were as glamorous as those wonderful black and white thirties films when slipping into something comfortable meant satin mules and a silk charmeuse robe and gown.  Yesterday I was feeling out of sorts, low grade fever and achy and stayed in my much rattier private clothes all morning.  Luckily I didn't get worse (seems to be short term allergy more than a full blown cold) and I made myself get dressed in "public" clothes so that Mr. Lucky and I could run some errands together.  Now that I am retired I spend large chunks of my day in "private" clothes....clothes I wear to walk the dogs, work in the gardens or do my own daily exercise.  I end up scrubbing down, prettying up and changing before dinner and an evening social group, evening with friends, movie, etc. Sometimes I miss the lovely dress for success suits that I spent hours wearing each day, back when I had a huge wardrobe of public clothes.  My wardrobe is still large by any standards in the world but far more sporty and casual.  Even if my style has changed I still like putting together a mildly coordinated outfit when I do go public.
Enough random ramblings. Here are the outfits for days 1 and 2:
Me Made May Day 1
Day 1 I wore these LL Bean brown jeans, a brown sleeveless knit shell and a cozy Sarah Spencer sweater with the infinity scarf that I made from wool challis.  By the time I left the house the temps had risen rapidly yesterday so I took off the scarf and added this lightweight ribbon/yard scarf/necklace.  My creative friend, Michele, had sent me one of these back in March and I fell in love with the colors and textures.  That one is happy in Florida and this one I made over the weekend.  62" long, about 14 or 15 strands of mixed ribbon and wool strands, knotted five times and it makes a lightweight accent piece.

 Day 2 and I'm wearing a silk jersey Simplicity 2364 top (you might get tired with how many versions you'll be seeing of this top) with my Lee jeans and these made by me earrings
Me Made May Day 2 

Pics posted so now it's off to book group this evening.  More to come tomorrow....


  1. Both outfits are very nice! And, wow, those earrings are super cool. :)

  2. Outfits are both very "smart" as the English would say. Casual, but not "bumming around" clothes.
    I am terrible. I tend to run out of time while gardening, or cooking, or organising things or whatever, and I go rushing to the school gates in badly cut, but oh so comfortable jeans, a raggedy sweater, worn out old tennis shoes, no makeup and possibly a leaf dangling from my hair to pick the kids up from school or to buy a pint of milk. My mother always did this sort of thing, and we were mortified as kids. Now I am doing it to my girls, oh the shame of it!

  3. I'm really enjoying seeing all the daily outfits that people put together. I chickened out on joining the challenge, but I am inspired by what others are doing.


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