Sunday, April 14, 2013

An impossible classic

Welcome to April, what a lovely month we are having! I apologise for my slackness but quite a lot has been going on! I've found myself a lovely new job, I've been working steadily on a new collection, I'm currently organising a fashion show for 10 new Brisbane designers and I just became an Aunty! How wonderful to have so many exciting things happening with new beginnings popping up faster than I know what to do with them.

So one of the most exciting new beginnings is my new job! I'll be starting at Pandora Garden City next week and I couldn't be more excited! A new job often means a new wardrobe and unlike my previous position, my new title calls for business wear. When I was told my uniform was an all black ensemble I drifted back to memories of my Tarocash days, all black was the name of the game and although it was always easy for me to find suitable work wear for my Tarotrash days, it seems that with stricter rules comes harder to find fashion. I have been told that although I will have a top provided for me I do have to clothe the bottom half of my body and it's up to me to find the appropriate item. I was given two choices, a skirt or pants, anyone who knows me, will know I'm not a huge ambassador for the panted option, so naturally I thought it would only make sense to go out and find myself a pretty new skirt to match my pretty new position. I was told the skirt needed to be all black and go to my knee, no problems I thought! How hard could it be to find a pretty work skirt? I clearly spoke too soon...

After five hours wandering from shop to shop through Westfield Chermside I ended up settling for a less than perfect skirt, but it is black, and it goes to my knees. So why was it so hard to find what I wanted?

Well to start with I knew that I wanted a high waisted option, I tend to feel rather frumpy in skirts that sit on the hips and knowing I have to tuck in my new work top I wanted something that fitted well.  Years ago I had an amazing high waisted skirt that was possibly the best fitted skirt I had ever come across. It was a great length and fitted me to a tee! My second demand on my new work skirt was that it had to be made from a good material, I know that I'm going to have to wash this skirt pretty often and I wanted something that would last and look great wash after wash. Lastly I didn't want to have to donate a kidney to purchase my new work skirt.

My first stop was Portmans, eons ago I used to work for the company and I still have some pieces from all those years ago which still look fabulous so I thought I'd literally walk in, pick up a few options and the rest of the day would be mine to enjoy. Wrong! Although I liked the styles they were all so short! I couldn't get over how tiny the hemlines have gotten, how on earth are men suppose to be concentrating at work when you have miles of leg hanging out trotting around the office?

I digress, I wandered out feeling slightly disheartened but thought Jacquie E would surely have what I wanted, the big Sister of Portmans would surely have some pieces more suitable with the hem length that I needed. Wrong again! Well yes the lengths were more suitable but the materials were awful! The black skirts were all made from a stretch cotton, not a flattering look considering they showed every line under the skirt, so how could I possibly tuck in a shirt to a skirt which was practically see through? With no embellishments your eyes were instantly drawn to my VPL, not a good look! Move on!

Next stop was Myer, I browsed through Cue (aka $$$) Basque (nothing in my size) Tokito (too short or not in my size) Miss Shop (same as Tokito) and a handful of other mass produced brands with no luck. Everything I liked wasn't in my size, and anything in my size was either too short or made with Bengaline, possibly the worst material ever invented, which for some bizarre reason is used frequently in office wear. Bengaline is a spandex/polyester mix which leaves you looking like a school girl/waitress, wrinkles into a synthetic ball when washed, turns shiny when ironed, sticks to every crevice of ones body and doesn't allow your skin to breathe. Great! Or maybe not...

So I moved on, I thought despite knowing it was most likely out of my price range I dropped into Kitten D'Amour. Well of course everything was gorgeous but I have to say I was a little surprised by their sizing. One skirt I was a size 10, another size 10 was too big and then I couldn't even fit into another style in a size 10, despite them all being the same cut and made from the same material. I was told it wasn't me but the fact the the skirts were handmade so they often varied in fit. Too bad if you thought you knew your size, or you were buying something as a gift. Despite these confusing size differences, I found a beautiful skirt that fitted perfectly, too bad it was almost $200 and made from satin (not ideal for every day wear). So again, I moved on.

I thought surely Target would have something! Surely they must! They service millions of Australians every year, surely they must have something fabulous for me! Wrong again, but that's fine, I did at least find a delightfully boring beige bra and a super cute cardigan, not needed but a justifiable purchase all the same, especially since I was having no luck in finding my much needed skirt.

Next stop was Veronika Maine, and I have to be honest, I fell in love there, the staff were amazing, the product was divine and everything was lovely! Despite having tried numerous styles and cuts in varying fabrics I was a standard size 8 in everything I tried on (always nice to fit in an 8 when I tend to vary between an 8 and a 10 depending on the brand). I found a few lovely pieces but my absolute favourite was a stunning high waisted piece, fully lined with beautiful simple detail through the front. However... there is always a however isn't there? It fell under the category of "sell a kidney" not quite as much as the Kitten D'Amour one but still out of my limits considering I've not worked for two weeks now and I've been living off my savings. Dam! Dam! Dam!

So I moved on, once again, sigh.

I popped into Queenspark out of sheer curiosity, thought I would find nothing, but actually found two I quite liked, they were both a little big for me, but I did actually like one I found and if I wore it a little lower (not on the hips but definitely not high waisted like I wanted) it would pass as ok.
I was pretty hungry by this time so I took a little brake and headed off to lunch. After lunch I was feeling much better so I thought I'd pop into David Jones for a quick peak. I tried on a skirt which I really liked but once again it was too big, why is there a shortage of nice skirts in sizes 8-10? I finally gave up after this and headed back to Queenspark. I won't ever go back there mind you. Not only was the woman completely unhelpful, but they were having a sale (which she didn't mention) then charged me more than the actual ticket price (which she didn't notice and I decided to pick her up on) then didn't actually bother to work out the proper sale price and just charged me a little less than the normal ticket price (urrgghhhh what?!) Anyway, in the end I bought a skirt I didn't love but it will be functional, hopefully I'll find a nice new skirt I actually like that doesn't require gnawing off my arm or selling a kidney to purchase in the next few weeks.

Lesson learnt, buying a high waisted long black skirt is almost impossible unless you can shop with a lawyers budget. In which case, go to Veronika Maine, because everything there is amazing!
Adorable but tiny from Portmans

My amazing "sell your kidney" choice from Kitten D'Amour

A weird cut and terrible fabric at Target, it had these little pleats that fanned out at the hips making my hips look bigger than they are :s I don't even have particularly big hips!

My true love at Veronika Maine, I will be buying this with my entire first week of wages!