Sunday, 21 May 2017

Outfit post: sunshine psychedelia

Ten years ago, this dress would have been the stuff of my nightmares. Crimplene, exuberant pattern… not something I'd have touched. Three years ago I'd probably still have quickly skimmed over it on the rack. But isn't it funny how tastes shift and change? I spotted this last week in Secondhand Rose's Etsy shop and pounced immediately.

Tara King is still very much one of my style icons, and my initial thought was, 'It's Taralicious!' Looking more closely at her, though, she tended to wear block colours and mini skirts. It's not really very Tara at all, though I do think in its bright colours and psychedelic pattern it is true to the spirit of the last series of The Avengers, even if it's not what Tara herself would wear.


It's an odd length for a 1960s garment – could it be early 70s? The collar shape is definitely 60s. A pattern this active looks like it belongs on a trendier garment, either a mini-dress or a flamboyant maxi. I couldn't find any evidence of rehemming, though, and the hem is stitched with thread matching the side seams, so I think this rather staid shape is the way it was supposed to look. It's not homemade; there's a crimplene tag, though no manufacturer's name. Maybe it was something for the fashionable fatty of the 1960s, the girl who longed for Biba but was more Mama Cass in shape. I like the length, it makes the dress more suitable for work.

I've been quite stressed of late and that's translated into some serious negativity about my appearance. Skin, body, you name it, I'm not happy with it. I haven't actually worn this dress out because I've been worried I'd look like some sort of far-out zeppelin in it. I put it on to show you, because I haven't posted much and most people enjoy clothes. And you know what? It actually looks okay! I'm fairly cylindrical in shape, but that's my body shape. I'm thinking I might ditch the belt when I wear it, as all the tie belt does is draw attention to the fact there's no waist to cinch in. I certainly don't look as bad as my brain is telling me I look. And the colours are fab. So thank you for reading my outfit posts, because I might still be thinking daft thoughts if I hadn't wanted to take these photos for you. Here's to you, and here's to psychedelic crimplene.

I wonder what I'll be wearing in another three years?

22 comments :

  1. It looks more than okay, it looking bloomin' gorgeous on you. What a fab print. I love the Secondhand Rose girls, have you got their book?
    That negative body image thing is horrible. It will pass, I'm sure.
    In the meantime keep posting the outfits 'cos I love seeing them (and you!) xxx

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    1. I haven't got the book. They seem like really nice people, though.

      I'm kind of short on outfits - even though I have some lovely dresses I want to share - because I'm too fat for most of my wardrobe right now. Pete and I are planning to join a gym this weekend as he's bordering on high for cholesterol and blood pressure, and he'd rather exercise more than change his diet. So I'm hoping I'll be wearing my lovely things by the end of the summer.

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  2. I think the dress looks lovely on you and it really sets off your beautiful red hair. The pattern is amazing and truly psychedelic!

    You didn't show us your footwear - what did you wear with it?

    I think the belt looks fine but I understand the no waist thing - I'm the same and rarely wear a belt.

    I can also see some chunky beads in a contrasting colour looking pretty groovy with this lovely dress...

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    1. Because I was in the back garden just scuffing around, I was wearing my old black brogues. I'll probably wear my navy patent flats with big buckles when I wear the dress out and about.

      I'm thinking BIG earrings with this one.

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  3. You DO look great. I know that awful self-critical voice, but I promise you, the voice is a liar. Wear the dress out and enjoy it. I hope you're feeling better soon-stress is awful, and not really given the importance it deserves.

    I recently wore a similarly puzzling dress, though mine was nylon. The print and neckline screamed 60's but the length and sleeves were odd. Might have been geared for a slightly older woman though by today's standards where that means drab, it could be confusing.

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    1. I'm on beta-blockers for the stress - they basically block the adrenaline receptors in the brain - and they're helping a great deal. Luckily work takes it seriously, and my team-mates are fantastic.

      I don't think anyone did drab in the 60s, did they? So many plus-size dresses I find from earlier decades are nice, but quiet, in browns and navies. And then you hit the 1960s, and the plus size dresses are all, "I'm FABULOUS!"

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  4. I think that dress looks FABULOUS on you!
    Actually I think that dress looks rather late 60's/early 70's Gucci.
    I hear you about fear of prints though- too large and you look like a set of curtains, too small & the pattern is lost. But that one's perfect!

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    1. I love the strange combination of art nouveau and psychedelia in the fabric. So very 60s.

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  5. Wear it out, it's too good not to! Amazing print, and I really like the length. I hope that some kick-ass body confidence returns to you soon - I find if I "fake it" in the meantime it helps x

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    1. I'm joining a gym! I want to fit into my favourite dresses and Pete needs to lower his cholesterol, so we're going to be more active.

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  6. That dress looks fabulous on you and the colour is sets off the colour of your hair beautifully. Hope your body confidence returns to you soon, and I really think wearing that dress out would be a step in the right direction. If it's attention grabbing, it will be for all the right reasons, believe me. I love the psychedelic print, and I'd prefer wearing that lenghth rather than mini anyway. xxx

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    1. It did strike me that it's very much your sort of length. It's a good length, suitable for the office.

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  7. Such a lovely dress, you look fantastic! It looks like a 'Groovy Nana Dress' to me, I'm picturing cat eye glasses and cake hats on badly behaved wedding guests :)

    And I should not have clicked on that etsy link, now I'm hankering after things I can't have!

    Hope your self doubt passes, it can take mine with it when it goes xxx

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    1. Nantastic!

      The self-doubt is awful. Some days I do get terribly, terribly down - but then I remind myself that everyone deserves to have fun, even people who look like me, and go out and do stuff anyway.

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  8. I think it looks lovely, and so do you! x

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  9. I agree with all the above you look fab. I can't remember the last time I posted a picture of me in a frock, just can't bring myself too...

    I too have no waist and on top of that my long torso means belts are often in the wrong place so I've pretty much stopped wearing them.

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    1. I had my doubts, but taking the photos made me feel better, rather than worse about myself.

      I'll wear self-coloured belts, but contrast ones are a massive no-no for me. I suppose being one of the no-waist gang is another reason why I should keep sticking my photos up, to show loving vintage isn't all about having a teeny waist.

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  10. I love this dress on you, it's just perfect Mim style and I would definitely wear the belt with it, it looks fabulous! I'm a massive fan of belts (I always wear them) and think they look great on everyone, no matter what shape you are. They help to balance the figure out and break it up, but wearing a skinny belt if you're short waisted and wearing a wide belt if you're long waisted is a good rule of thumb. xx

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  11. It's horrid when that nasty little voice insinuates itself and takes over our self images. Well done on showing it who's boss! If anyone called us all the nasty things that little shit of a voice does we'd punch them in the nose. That dress is lovely, and you look fab in it. The colours makes for a gorgeous contrast with your hair, and the cut of the dress looks good on you.

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  12. It's a very lovely dress, I do like the colours in it, it compliments your hair colour.

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  13. It is a lovely dress, great print and colours and you look really fabulous in it. The colours suit you marvellously too. I think a great print like this helps when you are not feeling very confident as it takes the attention. It is horrid to feel like that, I hope you feel more like yourself soon. I'm glad you are posting the outfits, I love to see them.

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