Sunday, 8 February 2015

How to wear Chanel

Meet the linen Chanel dress I received last week in the mail from my dear aunt who's been on a shopping spree while vacationing at her villa in Cannes. I was scared to put it on! I've worn it here with my D&G pony shoes. I looove it!
OR
Meet the linen sailor-style bag dress I thrifted off the five-dollar rack. I looove it! What? Now the slouchy fit looks a little less sophisticated, a little more slouchy? Puh. This is still a home-tailored beauty. With pockets! And shoulder pads.

Did you think the wool hot-pants outfit in my post "How to Get More Followers" was conservative chic? Wool hot pants? Those short shorts? On a woman +50? In the middle of winter? Standing amidst grunge by the road? I have posted much more conservative outfits in the past, although they were couched in whimsical language. Did the Moschino label of the hot pants (yes, that was real) create an aura of sophistication, or maybe the blurry background...

I think it's empowering that we can craft how we want to be viewed. Framing is everything. Like magic. There's Lucille Ball stomping around a vat of grapes (I love that episode here) and then there's Lucille Ball glamour queen. I think I want the grapes and the champagne. Some days I feel like I'm in the vat; others, I'm in the lap of luxury.

Below is my Donna Karan ivory silkiest silk blouse (yes, that's true). Thrifted. It's a pyjama top (there's tell-tale piping), so dreamy, so over-sized on me, but perfect tucked half into my wrecked thrifted jeans that I DIY'ed with yarn and markers, my thrifted long black velvet opera coat, and a thrifted beret and shawl which I fling about with drama. Cuffs and boots for the rain. Puh. And magic loupe for magic.

I must walk daintily with the dress which has so little kick space, despite its being made from a whole bolt of linen. I'm not sure if I'll put slits up the sides or at the back or upcycle it into something completely new. I suppose I should learn someday how to use straight pins. Have you ever tried to push in a pin and pushed the sharp end by mistake? Oh, no, no - I have never ever done such a ridiculous thing. Oh no. By the way, did I mention that's a Chanel dress?
I'm on a "deceptive blog title" kick. Just leave me be - getting it out of my system is all. I'm going over to Patti's house now, Visible Monday, ready to swill some champagne, trying hard to keep a straight face with this restricted kick. We are the yin/yangs, the control/chaos, the Chanel/bargain binners, the balance that makes life interesting.

EDIT: I am being too abstruse here, which I suppose was partly my intent, playing with how it is easy to frame our reactions to clothes by the label, which I do too, from Biba to Chanel, although I hate that phrase at awards shows: "Who are you wearing?" This is NOT Chanel, not by any stretch, and, alas, I don't have an aunt in Cannes, but this dress has a boxy, rich quality to it and a very odd fit, which could be seen as thrifty bag dress or couture, which was part of the appeal, and it was five dollars. It was made by a talented home sewist. The dress is navy. 

Re. comments. I feel bad that some of the comments you have taken the time to write have gone missing. Mine regularly go missing on other blogs as well. I started to notice it particularly when the "I am not a Robot" began popping up on many blogs. And there's a message "Leave this page? Stay on this page?" But even before that, I have had comments go amiss. Usually I copy my comment before I submit it and then send it again if I don't see the message stating it has been saved for moderation or will appear soon. It takes much longer and it's very frustrating, as many of you know, and I'm still not sure if it works unless I go back later. 

Anyway, thank you all so much for your comments wherever they end up. I'll keep checking my trash and spam to make sure my email is not auto-sabotaging me. If any of you can crack this mystery, please let me know!


32 comments:

  1. Pockets! And shoulder pads?? Doesn't get much better than that!

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  2. Second outfit is amazing! it's true pure lovely!

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  3. Linen? Did someone say linen? I want that dress! Wah!
    I don't care if it's Chanel or Channel.
    Oh all right just because you are a super old +50 yr old, I'll let you keep it.
    I've been extremely aware of how we frame ourselves since blogging. So much camouflage! Don't show the mess in the room, or the dust (well that might have crept in), or an unflattering angle! Not that I have any:-)
    Love to be stalked by you on Instagram. It'll keep me up to the mark, like knowing the teacher is watching! xo Jazzy Jack

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  4. You look fantastic! When I wear linen I turn into a big ball of wrinkles!

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  5. The grapes and champagne! You look fantastic and thank you for linking your Chanel stylings with Vis Mon, xox.

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  6. HA, need a belt! But then you always look amazing, no matter what you wear.

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  7. Chanel ain't got nuthin' on you!! I love you jeans so much that I might come up there and steal them off of your super model bod. BTW, I was going back through some of your old posts, having a Mel fashion show, and I noticed that some of my comments never showed up. They are up in the cloud I guess so you might notice them in a puddle the next time it rains.

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  8. I keep telling myself I want to buy a Chanel tweed jacket before . . . well, you know what. Ten years ago I saw one in a consignment shop for $600; now they are $2,000 plus, but the good thing is, at the ripe ole age of 60, I no longer care. I'll buy a tweed jacket at a thrift shop and just add lace to the cuffs. Voila! Chanel!

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  9. How intriguing you are! Love your Chanel both ways,
    and also your tricked up jeans...

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  10. Darling, i kept it a secret but my closet, well my walkin is full of Chanel, What else to wear, if only, Chanel of course, who went to bed with Chanel only? Marilyn, smart girl...nothing but Chanel i say...you are smart and intriguing:)

    Love

    Karlxo

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  11. CONNIE: I shall keep my eyes on the puddles! Why does that happen, comments go missing. I have noticed that lately as well, many have disappeared from posts I know I've commented on. It's frustrating.

    ETC: This post is very popular with a sports viewing blog. I can't stand when marketers hijack my sacred domain! Gaaa.

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  12. OH, we're popping names! Chanel or Toy Chanel (just looks "Chanel") - it's all good! Love it...

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  13. That's a GREAT Chanel dress! Lucky find. SCREAMING for a belt...

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  14. Isn't that weird about the sports video clip thang?! I have that on my blog too...not that I obsess over stats...no, me, never.

    I love the neckline on this dress! I'm tempted to copy it. I'm in a collecting mood these days...lots of idea collecting, not much else doing...

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  15. Chanel? As in Georges Chanel? Hee, I bought L a G. Chanel tie once. I love that. It's not about the name, of course, but it IS, isn't it?

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  16. SUE: The buttons of that neckline are actually functioning, which is how you get the dress off and on. I found a missing button of this one in the pocket and happily sewed it back on. I'm wearing a T-shirt underneath for warmth.

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  17. I've noticed comments missing too; at least I know I'm not alone. Hope this one gets to you Mel!

    You can wear anything and make it shine! Yes, it's all about the frame, and the photo of you in "Chanel" should be framed. Just like so many pics of you!

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  18. It must be me - I think grey is an inherently conservative colour, can't help myself, and I associate you with colour and texture, Mel, not grey wool or linen! But hey, always good to ring the changes, isn't it? xx

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  19. It took me days to reply because I kept reading what others wrote and I was all confused because I thought you were being funny and that is not really Chanel!

    And I have to say I totally dig that your lip color matches your shawl!

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  20. I like the stark simplicity of the first outfit. Cool dress, regardless of label. I've never been keen on Chanel stuff anyway and if I ever found something at a thrift store I'd just sell it so I could buy something cool.

    I am acutely aware of how we shape how we want to be seen in our blogs. I certainly try to put my best self forward, but I always take photos of stuff that I am actually wearing that day, so it is really me, but the best possible me. I like your Lucy analogy ;)

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  21. Oh, please don't re-purpose this dress just yet ... it's WONDERFUL on your wondrous willowyness. Grand with the Breton business beneath! Great find, and it's very, very you in the very best ways. I'm looking for some discrete pads to square off some pieces that need it. I'm ready to wear them again ... seems like the thing to do, somehow. They just make this dress perfect.
    Sorry your posts are disappearing! Hope all is resolved soon.

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  22. I feel like I could look that dress for hours. I'm sitting here just...staring. Haha. I love that I can't quite tell whether the outfit is a single piece or whether the dress is one layer of many. <3

    - Anna

    www.melodicthriftychic.com

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  23. Hola como estás? Siempre es bueno visitar tu blog, muy original y artísticas fotos, me gusta, besos,ana.

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  24. When the "I'm not a robot" check box first started appearing on blogs, many of my comments "went missing." I then figured out that you have to click the "publish your comment" box twice - once right after checking the "I'm not a robot" box, then again after it returns the comment page.
    It's hard to pass up items that are well made, whether by a home-sewer or a fancy-schmancy label. Especially home-sewn clothes -- I some times feel that so much work has gone into it that I have to try to find a use for the garment (which doesn't help with the hoarding tendencies). I am intrigued by the ornamented jeans.

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  25. I take back what I just said. I only had to click "publish comment" once on your blog. But just had to click twice to leave a comment on Curtise's blog.

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  26. There are not many people who can get away with this Chanel wide model. Love the black and white striped V (is that the dress itself? I presume so) and the buttons. Of course you can belt it as well. No idea what it would look like then.
    Love your silky framed outfit too.
    And your writing. Love to read that weird mind of you. LOL
    I don't think my comments go haywire. I usually comment on all your posts.
    Greetje

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  27. I just love that dress on you, no matter who designed or made it. The style Is classic. So architectural. And linen too. I like everything about it, the collar, neckline, buttons, striped insert, length, shape. Even your t-shirt underneath looks good with it. You have the eye, Ms. Melanie.

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  28. I have an aunt in Cannes... Tx.... mmm Ok I don't think town that exists. I tried.

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  29. Agreed, it is totally how you frame it. I'd love to see it a la Coco with espadrilles tied at the ankles and a jaunty seaside hat. Maybe you can have a skinny low-slung belt to make it more '20's in feel. Don't forget to include a man lounging nearby wearing a Breton shirt and slouchy pants. When the romance fades you can cut it off (the dress that is) and wear it cropped over a skinny little undershirt and anything you please on the bottom. It will compliment just about anything. Fun piece and you ALWAYS looked fab. Miss you!! I'm coming around slowly. :-)

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  30. Oh I love the linen dress whatever its provenance. And pocketses!!

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  31. you got great style! that photo with themachine reminds me of Vivian Maier.

    xo
    agnes / iiiinspired / pieces-of-mine

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  32. Life is much more interesting with a fake aunt in Cannes, no? A little embellishment never hurt anyone, except maybe the poor dolt who falls for it.

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