So. Assuming I can find a way to make the portobello pencil skirt work, either by exchange, alteration, steaming, or simple acceptance, let me show you why I am SO galvanized by this whole "taupe" as neutral 2 epiphany.
I actually have a few posts to make but will spread them out over a few days so as not to bore the pants off you all.
For now, here is the skirt with another new purchase: a taupe linen "sweatshirt" from H&M. This is my first H&M purchase ever. Normally I go in there and feel overwhelmed, discouraged by the poor quality, and lost. But on this most recent occasion, I knew what I was looking for, and armed with my list I felt much happier. I wasn't after a sweatshirt in particular, but I was after a loose drapey top of some kind, in taupe. And voila! It's almost a perfect match for the skirt.
The sweater needs a steam, and I have just thrown on (not arranged) the scarf (my photographer was losing patience), but I think you get the idea.
How have I done, proportion wise? Does it work?
Happiness factor: HUGE. In this loose on top, slim on bottom silhouette I feel "myself," the way I feel in a good tailored jacket, which is sort of ironic, but there you go. It is what it is, right? I seem to have two loves -- waist defining, and waist surrendering.
By the way, I was very amused when my daughter noticed and pointed out that the sheer top underneath the sweater and the scarf are both leopard print. It seems my insidious fashion education is working on my fashion-despising girl!