Monday, January 12, 2009

You Pick the Outfit

Gosh, I haven't done this in ages! But here are some gowns, and you can help me decide which is the keeper for this semiformal/Black Tie thingy I've got coming up.

1) Blue Dress / Bronze Shoes

2) Red Dress / Black Shoes

3) Purple Dress / White Shoes (second most comfortable)

4) Silver Dress / Black Shoes (most comfortable)

Let me know in the comments! Thanks!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Pantyhose FTW?

Okay readers, I need some help.

I'm attending what I would describe as a "Black Tie Optional" event, and I will probably be wearing a cocktail-length gown. Do you think I need to wear nylons or pantyhose or tights, etc?

Personally, I don't want to. Not only do I find them uncomfortable (I essentially quit ballet class as a child to avoid wearing tights), but I also have a very rebellious reaction to the idea of being told that as a woman, I "must" wear these very conservative garments because to see BARE LEG, OMG would be unseemly. It feels anti-feminist.

Then again, is it equivalent to the male needing to wear, well, a black tie? I feel like that's a matter of fashion (as I am adhering to Black Tie fabrics, lengths, etc) but the hose is somehow a reflection of sexual deviance, sexuality, chastity. I mean, who is noticing a sheer skin-colored fabric on my legs that is trying its best to be invisible? And why are they looking? And who are they to tell me to cover up?

Now, I do understand that it's formal, conservative, and traditional to wear tights. That's pretty much a given. If someone else were asking ME about this topic, I would advise them to wear hose to be on the safe side. (Because while I don't mind being controversial with fashion, I wouldn't recommend breaking the rule to others. It is a broken rule.) What I don't understand is whether this is seen in 2009 as a "must" rather than an option, and why. Do I look like the party slut if I'm wearing a very mature, formal gown but no hose? Am I offending the elderly? Do I just look unaware of the rules of dress?

Now, I'm a modern gal. I don't think I need to keep quiet, I don't let dates get the door or the check for me, and I wear white shoes after Labor Day. When I wear fashionable tights (when they're cute, when I'm cold, etc.), I never wear them with open-toe shoes (unless the seams are completely invisible, but generally not even then). That's because I think it looks tacky though, not because I'm trying to follow a rule.

I do know the rules. But I don't know the rules about breaking rules. What crime and to what extent am I commiting if I rebel against the attitude that I "must" wear tights to this shindig? My mother says that I will offend "the grown-ups" attending. I said I AM a grown-up (and then I stomped my foot, right?) and asked if she meant I would offend OLD PEOPLE.

I've never worn tights to formal events (not since I was a child), not even to recent job interviews. I was a bridesmaid in a wedding one summer ago, and I wore a knee-length gown and no hose. (In fact, this hasn't really come up at all in my adult life, unless I've been breaking these hose laws without knowing it (probably). I do have nice, smooth, tan legs though, so I think I that's generally why I have gotten by in the past without any finger-wagging.)

So please, help me put this all in perspective. I don't want to offend my hosts. But I don't want to be uncomfortable, nor do I want to make a choice merely for the sake of "tradition." I don't mind being unconventional, I do mind offending. Your thoughts?

(BTW, later this evening I'll be posting some pictures of the dress options. You can help me choose the dress!)

[From a friend:
[5:13 P.M.]: honestly, I would wear hose.
[5:18 P.M.]: bare legs don't fit black tie.
[5:19 P.M.]: black tie has always been a very strict phrase.
[5:20 P.M.]: you think tuxedos are comfortable?
[5:20 P.M.]: they're not
[5:20 P.M.]: not even a little.
[5:20 P.M.]: black tie is not about comfort, you're a fashionista.
[5:20 P.M.]: you should know fashion and comfort sometimes diverge horribly.]

Thursday, January 01, 2009

Shoe Giveaway Winner!

After taking a much-needed break this week, the Style Bard is back and ready to kick off 2009 with a bang. That means actual posts with actual substance and, dare I say, some regularity? Yup, it's time to spark the original blog again, so keep your eyes on this space.

In the meantime, the winner of the latest Style Bard Shoes free shoes giveaway has been announced, so head over to the announcement post to see if you've won!