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Thursday 14 June 2012

Sequined maxi gown worn as day wear

Again, it was dark and dreary outside today, time for some serious sparkle therapy. I thrifted this sequined maxi dress a couple of weeks ago with the challenge of transforming it into nonchalant day wear.

The dress is comprised of a lacy sheath with filigree-like embroidery and sequin embellishments, and a matching maxi white polyester slip, both with back slits. The effect is very pretty and feminine, and in fact the dress could have been worn at one time as a wedding dress, but I needed something slightly more grounded for my inspiration walk.... Here's what I came up with, a la Mary Pickford.

To fill in the white-out and urbanize the delicacy of this dress, I decided to wear a black satin slip over the white slip. I also wore a white half-slip further down the layering hierarchy for additional coverage. And I wore a black long-sleeved boat-neck top under the slips to add more solidity and provide warmth. To finish off my outfit I wore my crackle brown Miu Miu boots. They lace up the front but cleverly have side zips. And then a denim jacket on top. The boots with the lace and black added a pinch of Goth to my look, which exactly mirrored by mood today. Grrr. I brought my wrap on my walk too in case I got too cold.

In the above photo maybe you can make out some of the sequins.

Details of the outfit:
  • stretch white sequined maxi dress with matching slip, thrifted, Wildlife Thrift Store, $15
  • black satin slip, a shop in Korea, new a long time ago
  • black tights
  • crackle brown Miu Miu boots, Wildlife Thrift Store, $10
  • black long-sleeved boat-neck top, thrifted, Value Village
  • denim jacket with glitter bits, thrifted, Value Village

The back slit above, and worn with my jacket below.


In other news...


I have been very busy these past two weeks preparing for an artist talk at Baron Gallery, where my work is being exhibited in a group show. I didn't post it before because the reserved seating was fully booked soon after the event was publicized. I would like to think it's because I'm talking that the session filled up so quickly, but the other speaker at the event is Dr. Paul Swingle, a world-renowned psychologist, former professor at Harvard and University of Ottawa, and former psychology expert at McLean Hospital in Boston. He specializes in in biofeedback and neurotherapy at his Vancouver clinic.

There will be a repeat talk on Sunday, July 8, if you will be in the Vancouver area. Again, it's by reservation only and I'm afraid it will fill quickly. 

The name of my talk is: "Unlearning How to Paint: Matters of the Heart and Mind." Dr. Swingle's talk is called "Art and the Brain." I think I'm going to wear my opera gown and my Munster shoes. I already have a magic wand; her name is Grushenka.

I'm going to speak first so I wonder what all the brains in the room will think of my work...?! I'm looking forward to it. Wish me luck. 

I am also giving a workshop called "My Big Action Painting" Workshop on June 23 at the gallery if any of you are around. You can check out the details at Baron Gallery



  1. Melanie,Good luck on your talk. I'm sure you will steal the show. It all sounds fascinating. Wish I could be there. Meanwhile...lacy overlay, denim jacket! Sweet and Tough. You go, Girlfriend!

  2. Oh WOW! Fabulous dress. The layering of this outfit is wonderful. Good luck with your talk at the gallery. I'm curious about what you'll wear. =)

  3. I would love to hear your talk just on the basis of the title alone. The dress is just gorgeous...and I like how you've added the denim jacket. I've bought up a couple of sheer overdresses (none as beautiful as this) and hope to do a sheer series before the summer is over.

  4. Oh, wow, I just love this dress! How cool - and you could wear so many other colours under it!

    I love the better look at the boots too. Great skinny heel.

    How I would love to come to your top! Darn!

  5. I had a little trouble following all the steps to create your outfit but the proof is in pudding, so to speak. All the perfect elements are there. I would so love to be able to attend your gallery talk!! I'm so happy for you and I'm sure it will be exciting and fruitful on many levels.

  6. I kid you not, I think that IS my old wedding dress!!! I wonder how it got up to your neck of the woods?? Seriously though, it looks just like it. But I remembered though while typing this that I cut up the top lacy panel into a top and disconnected it from the lining. That's interesting though. hmmm
    Good luck on your talk. I bet you'll be VERY interesting and captivating. ;)

  7. Oh the brains in the room will think you are amazing.
    The workshop sounds fabulous, I wish I could go.
    The ball gown and Munster shoes are a perfect attire for a special talk.
    Love the outfit today.
    All the best.
    Love v

  8. I'd love to come over and do some art with you! Best of luck, I'm sure the brains will all be very impressed, I want to do the workshop!

  9. Ooh, how exciting, good luck for the talk. I'm sure everyone will love you!

  10. Really creative job you did with the layering! The hat and the gloves are really nice!

  11. Sparkle therapy? Yes, yes, yes: count me in! Gorgeous -- and I love the jean jacket, too. Congratulations and good luck on your talk. It sounds like such an interesting topic. I'm sure "the brains" will be more than impressed.

  12. Your talk sounds very cool - I wish I could attend! Amazing styling skills with the denim, sequins and black. I haven't been brave enough to try this with any of the "fancy" dresses I've thrifted in the last year or so, but posts like this one certainly provide inspiration. It must be cooler there than it is here, because I'd be sweltering in all those layers!

  13. I'd love to attend your talk, I bet you are mesmerising to watch.
    Your outfit is a triumph. I'll be looking out for those 1990s overlay clubbing dresses with fresh eyes now, yours looks phenomenal especially with that fabulous denim jacket that fits you to perfection. xxx

  14. PS: about your question on one of my recdent posts - the creature in the glass recycling bin is a Chewbacca, from Star Wars :)

  15. Your talents know no bounds, Melanie.
    The arrangement of the pieces in your outfit is lovely. I love the Mary Pickford reference.

  16. Your style is remarkable! In fact, I am remarking on it now because I'd never have thought of turning that FABULOUS dress into something so fun. It does have a Mary Pickford feel. I suspect you light up the room when you give a talk.

  17. amazing... the story of how you assemble the outfit, transport me... have and great weekend, big hug

  18. Good luck on your talk- I hope someone films it and posts it on youtube.

    I love the pillar dress. The layer of the white over black is so "old timey" in a good way. And it makes that gorgeous sheer immensely wearable.

  19. Beautiful, amazing pics. very stylish.
    parfum pas cher

  20. So fun to meet you today! I hope your talk went well (have to say, you looked luminous -- what do you do to get that skin?! amazing!)
    I look forward to having a real visit someday reasonably soon. . .

    1. I walked by you and did a double-take. I hope you can forgive my rude intrusion into your conversation but I couldn't leave without a quick hello and best wishes for your own talk today! What a wonderful coincidence that we were both talking around the same time in the same neighbourhood. You looked fabulous!

  21. Ah, so wish I could nip off to Vancouver to see your talk - it sounds so fascinating. And your layering of this outfit is inspired. Very envious of your boots too.

  22. How I would love to attend your presentation! I'm sure that it will be as enthralling as your outfit above
    and your writing. 'The layering hierarchy' is a phrase I can connect with, and love your ability to come up with just the right words to describe your details.

    I would love to move a little bit of our over 90 degree weather your way today! My garden is having a difficult time absorbing the heat.

  23. Wishing you so much luck, and sending heaps&heaps of cosmic goodness your way! :D

    This ensemble is so. very. cool. :) I love how you can put these beautiful pieces together and make a whole lotta fabulous. I wish I had this brilliant knack! Really diggin' the gown w/ the denim and gloves..perfect touch.

    Look forward to hearing about the presentation, and seeing pictures of your gorgeous ensemble for this exciting event! XO

  24. Love all this layering! LOVE it!!!


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