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Archive for September 27th, 2011

Missoni and me.

27 Sep

{ daily outfit: }

Daily outfit and style tip, wearing Missoni for Target blouse, black skinny jeans

Daily outfit and style tip, wearing Missoni for Target blouse, black skinny jeans

Daily outfit and style tip, wearing Missoni for Target blouse, black skinny jeans, Jillery ring

A couple of weeks ago I walked down the sunny plaza where I work to pick up the September issue of Vogue. Sitting quietly with my lunch in Oakland’s historic Rotunda building, I methodically flipped through, dog-earring pages of interest with predictability. The launch of Missoni for Target caught my eye, I made a mental note to drive over the following week at lunch.

On September 14 I had lunch with a friend whose baby girl was stylishly sporting a violet knit dress with the trademark zig-zag in citron yellow and green. Over soup I heard a first-hand account of items maddeningly becoming out of stock in her shopping cart while online two days earlier. A visit to the store provided further proof of the mayhem in process. In my naïveté I had believed I could casually swing by Target in the following week or two and decide in person which knit dress I would buy for myself.

Against my desire to succumb to the frenzy I still found myself online a few hours later scanning every item until I could find something not yet out of stock. I found two blouses in my size. I did not hesitate. I bought both of them with the precision maneuver of a professional online shopper. I would decide later if I liked them. Now was not the time to waffle and question whether I needed either, both or whether they even matched anything else I owned. I had gotten caught up in the moment I had been trying to avoid. Why?

I later found myself reflecting on what had happened. I will most likely never be able to afford a full-priced Missoni dress. I’ve walked by them in Nordstrom’s, I’ve touched the knit, the combination of silky and nubby calls to me. The patterns and colors remind me of my childhood, my mother crocheted and knitted her fair share of little dresses and sweaters for us girls in the 70′s. I love color, I love good and unexpected color combinations, I’ve coveted Missoni dresses for years. I could save up for one, sure, but I’m better off paying a bill or taking a vacation.

Target gave me and others like me the opportunity to have a little something special. The playing field, however competitive, was leveled briefly. This doesn’t cheapen the brand, it allows the rest of us to touch the untouchable. My new blouses are polyester, not silk. The hem is unfinished as a reminder that I may own a little part of a dream but I don’t have the real thing. That’s fine by me, I’m not out to fool anyone.

The decision for a designer label to choose to be more accessible is in part economic. But the idealistic dreamer in me also hopes that there is a nobler goal; that letting the rest of us get a taste of something usually reserved for the elite not only brings us pleasure, it is also sharing its art and vision with us. My economic status doesn’t drive how and what I am able to appreciate, it only affects what I can call my own. Hype or not, the blouses are beautiful. I’m keeping them both.

{ style tip: }

Missoni has always been a pioneer of bold color combinations. Deep rust, pale chick yellow, aqua blue, soft peach, sandy beige. Reflex blue, grey, ivory, bright minty green, soft purple, brown, cream. It’s absolute madness! While most of us are inclined to leave these color combinations to the experts, here’s a hint why they work: The values and hues compliment each other.

I encourage everyone to play with color, my trick is that I assess whether certain shades look good together in daylight, in advance of getting dressed. Indoor lighting can be misleading but indirect daylight provides the perfect lighting environment to determine how well colors work together.

{ deets: }

Multicolored blouse/Missoni for Target, black skinny jeans/Urban Outfitters, black studded belt/unknown, black sandals/Dansko, spike ring/Jillery.

 
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