Thank goodness that’s over.
I spent the better part of the weekend on dress patrol. I know you’re probably sick to death reading about this stupid dress saga, and believe me, I’m sick of writing about it, but it’s a big deal to me because, well, you and I both know – I don’t DO shopping very well. And when I’m actually successful at finding something that fits and something that I like, I’m afraid it’s news worthy.
I got a late start on Saturday. A and M were over and whenever the boys have someone sleep over, I simply DON’T sleep. It’s the mother bear in me I suppose. I’m not only responsible for my boys, I’m now responsible for my sister’s boys too and that sometimes weighs heavily on my mind so that I can’t shut my brain off no matter how hard I try.
I finally summoned enough energy to leave the house about 3:00 in the afternoon. Kevin was at band practice, the boys were busy doing … geeky teenage boy stuff and I had finally talked myself into removing my butt from my chair and getting this odious task over with once and for all.
Hunting for a dress on Saturday was my THIRD trip out to look for a stupid dress. Shopping is like making a trip to the gynecologist for me so you can imagine how enthusiastic I was feeling by this point – I just wanted to get this stupid task over and done with.
I was determined to come home with a dress at all costs.
I only had about two hours before I needed to get back home and cook dinner for five hungry men/boys so I was in tunnel mode.
Tunnel mode means I’m completely focused on my task and get the hell out of my way – I’m on a mission.
Woe to the person who dares to cross my agenda.
I started out at JCPenney’s. And I found about six possibilities right off the bat, which is saying a lot considering they were having a sale and everything was nearly 50% off and really picked over.
I waited for a dressing room (because the place was packed and the atmosphere had a rushed, almost desperate, feel to it) and tried on the dresses.
No offense to JCP or to anyone who has bought a little black dress from JCP but they just felt … cheap. They looked and felt cheaply made and I simply wasn’t impressed with any of them. So, I put them back on the rack and headed back to Macy’s.
The last time I was at Macy’s I was in a hurry (even more so than Saturday) and I had somehow missed a whole section of dresses. I was on my way out the door when I noticed them – hence the reason I went back to take a look.
I grabbed several dresses and headed to the fitting room. At this point in my search, I was thinking outside my comfort zone. I just wanted a damn dress – I honestly didn’t care if it was something I would have normally worn or even of the price. I was feeling desperate and anxious just to cross this hunt off my list.
The dress I fell in love with was absolutely everything I never would have gone for initially. I tried to find a picture of it online, but no luck. Let me see if I can describe it for you:
It was a figure-hugging short (just above the knee) stretchy, spaghetti strap dress. And it had vertical layers of tiers that only accentuated your curves. It was white on top, a baby blue around the waist and then a darker blue around the bottom. All of the colors blended into each other so it was a soft combination of pretty colors as opposed to in your face COLOR – COLOR – COLOR blocks.
I felt sexy as hell in that dress.
I kept it on longer than the rest of the dresses I had tried on. I wanted it. Bad. But the practical side of my brain kicked in (thank goodness) and I knew it simply wasn’t going to happen.
Pros: It looked freaking hot. I felt sexy in it. Kevin would salivate.
Cons: It was $150.00. It was dated, meaning it would pass the fashion muster for a few years but then would look ridiculous when the trend passed. It was $150.00. I would never have an occasion to wear it. It was $150.00.
In the end, I reluctantly took it off and put it back on the rack. *sigh*
My search continued.
As a last ditch effort, I browsed the clearance rack. I don’t normally browse clearance racks because I never, ever, find anything in my size or something I would even remotely consider wearing.
But I looked. And I’m so glad I did.
I found another dress. This one was black and quite similar to the first one I bought – no wonder I liked it. It was timeless and the price was right.
I put it on my “seriously consider” list. I also hid it among some other dresses so some other desperate woman looking for a party dress wouldn’t snatch it up before I had made up my mind about it.
I headed back out to Dillard’s for one last look. I’ll be honest, I loved Dillard’s selections. But their prices … wow. They were a good $20, sometimes $30 more than Macy’s (exact dresses) so it sort of pained me to have to go back, but their dress selection was awesome.
I tried on ten more dresses (no, I’m not exaggerating).
But in the end, I went back to Macy’s and bought the dress I had found on the clearance rack. It wasn’t my favorite, but it was the most practical because of the price and the fact that I could get away with wearing it for many, many years.
The only problem? It’s a size smaller than I normally wear so … if I gain any weight, I’m going to have a problem fitting into it when it comes time to wear it. The bodice is so tight that I feel like I’m wearing a strait jacket with every breath I take.
But hey. Not being able to breathe is a small price to pay to put this dress issue behind me once and for all.
Here’s what I learned from my dress-shopping experience: It is freaking hard to balance self-imposed criteria when looking for a dress. For example: I was looking for something that was classy, sophisticated, wasn’t too young for me, something that looked sexy but wasn’t slutty at the same time and didn’t require a loan from the bank in order to buy.
And I think THAT’S the biggest reason why I hate clothes shopping. It’s that whole trying to find the middle ground thing. I’m a pretty modest person and I like to dress sexy now and again, but if it means being uncomfortable in order to achieve that sexy look, I’m not interested (unless I’ve been hunting for a damn dress for one solid week and then all bets are off).
I simply don’t have the patience required to find decent-trendy-looking clothes.
And because I know you’re going to want to see the dresses I’ve picked, I modeled them for you. I’ll try not to burn your retinas … too much. 🙂
(Please ignore my bra. I’ll wear a strapless bra – I’m not THAT tacky).
I know. They’re both black. *yawn* But hey, black is black and black is timeless so … hush. 🙂
And would you believe this is my first (and probably last) pair of strappy shoes?? I found these at Payless for $17.00:
I just hope I remember how to walk in heels. I haven’t worn heels in about seven years.
So that’s it. I’m DONE talking about dresses.
I’m sure you’re relieved.
I know I am.
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