WritersFest Day 3: Yay or Nay? ETA: book cover image added

I know I am going out of order here. For YLF purposes I don't think it matters.

Here is my proposed outfit for Saturday. On this day, I have several events, ranging from early morning until 11 pm.

At 9:30 am I am hosting Naomi Duguid, meaning I introduce her and thank our sponsors etc. at the first event of the day.

I will be on site most of the day following, and then at 5:30 to 6:30 pm I am appearing in an event. I'll be reading some of my poetry and participating in an onstage discussion.

Later that evening, I may or may not be attending a speakeasy event. If I do go to that event, I would probably bring something different to change into, if I could figure out a way to do that. It is tough to come up with one outfit that serves all these purposes. I could possibly bring the tunic top from yesterday's thread and a different pair of shoes.

My proposed daytime outfit and appearance outfit (late afternoon) is this one.

Shevia Rag&Bone shirt
M&M shrunken jacket
Doc Saras
One of two pencil skirts.

So....the blue one. I like the length. BUT IT DRIVES ME INSANE with hose even with a slip. I don't have the right slip. So it is bunching and creating all kinds of fussiness. I quickly discovered I cannot wear this IRL. Which brings up the question, should I keep that skirt after all? It really is NOT going to work well with tights.

Alternative skirt is the Halogen seamed skirt. Is it okay? It does match the trim on the top, after all. But I worried that fuchsia and black would be a little passé.

Thoughts welcome! And again, my apologies for crowding the forum this week!

ETA: copied from my reply to Jonesy below to give you a clearer sense of the event: The poetry book has 50s inspired cover art (not my book but an anthology I appear in) and the whole event is a bit retro. The book is called Desperately Seeking Susans and it's an anthology of poetry by Canadian poets all called SUSAN! So I was going for a sort of mixed 80s/ 50s vibe here quite deliberately. I should have been a bit more clear about that.

This post is also published in the youlookfab forum. You can read and reply to it in either place. All replies will appear in both places.


  • Transcona Shannon replied 9 years ago

    First of all, there is absolutely no need to apologize for being on the forum Suz - that's what we're here for!

    That's too bad about the tube skirt. Personally if it's not going to work with tights and a slip isn't solving the issue, I say return it. It will have a high "fuss factor" and you'll end up not wearing it.

    I love the combination of that Rag & Bone shirt with the fuchsia jacket - just brilliant! And I think the black pencil skirt works beautifully with it. The outfit has too modern a feel to it to be passe - especially once you toss in those Doc Saras! I love this outfit - A LOT!

  • Astrid replied 9 years ago

    I second Shannon, both on the skirt issue and the outfit! I had two skirts I thought I could make work and they bunched up and climbed my legs and annoyed the heck out of me so I never wore them in the end. Return it if you can!

  • Ann in New England replied 9 years ago

    The bit of silver at your neckline (is it part of the blouse?) just draws my eye immediately to your face -- which is PERFECT for the roles that you are playing at this event. People won't be able to take their eyes off you while you read your poetry!

    I don't think the color scheme feels dated at all.

    And the Halogen skirt is absolutely fine. Nobody will notice it, though, they'll all be looking at your gorgeous face.

  • nancylee replied 9 years ago

    I agree that the Halogen skirt outfit works just fine, Suz. If you're going to be uncomfortable in the first skirt then all bets are off!

    Is it the VC tube midi that's causing these problems? I feel responsible for getting you into that mess by crowing so much about mine! I sure have loved mine in the warmer months, but I have no sense of how it will transition into the fall/winter. I haven't tried mine on with tights yet, and now I'm worried....the bunching issue could be significant. I have a pair of body smoothing shorts I was thinking of wearing over my tights to smooth the friction between the knit skirt and tights. Do you have/could you pick up something like that?

  • texstyle replied 9 years ago

    Great outfit Suz and not passe at all!

  • K. Period. replied 9 years ago

    Total agreement all around! Return the fussy skirt. When they don't work, they don't work and they wind up orphans. It's a fact. And your outfit? It looks fantastic. A total winner.

    Totally O/T: I'm jealous (in a good way) of you getting to meet Naomi! I'm at total foodie and that's one reason why. The other is that she is a friend of my friend, Jeff Koehler, who is a food writer in Barcelona. Such a small world!

  • Inge replied 9 years ago

    WOW! The WritersFest sounds fantastic, Suz. I'm so sorry the midi tube skirt isn't working out for you. I really love this outfit with the longer length skirt, but it looks beautiful with your Halogen skirt as well. Love the black & white shirt with that spunky fuchsia jacket. A creative, modern and strong outfit.

    Have a marvelous time!

  • catgirl replied 9 years ago

    Do not keep the fussy skirt. I know that feeling of bunchy annoyance and it only gets worse. We are just going into winter and you will not be able to stand it.

    The black skirt works!

  • cinnamon fern replied 9 years ago

    Yes, return the skirt! Nothing is worse than an outfit you have to fuss with all day.

    This is a cute and flattering outfit, Suz. Are you going for cute?

  • Jonesy replied 9 years ago

    I agree about sending back the tube skirt--bunching is a no go!

    If I'm being totally honest, I find the top and shoes together too matchy-matchy and a little bit costumey (sorry!). Full disclosure: I am not a huge fan of the shoes, so that most likely influences my perceptions of the outfit (in my head there's an unshakeable association with a community theater production of a musical set in the 1950s)...I am probably in the tiny minority around here on that one though, so take my opinion with a big grain of salt. LOL.

    Do you feel fab and gorgeous and ready to take on the world? If yes, then that's your answer :).

  • Suz replied 9 years ago

    Oh, thank you, everybody! Very good thoughts and perceptions here!

    Nancy - that is a great idea to try some of those smoothing shorts. I don't have to send this back immediately, so if you try those and they seem to work, please do let me know. For this event, I don't have time to go shopping again to pick them up, so it will have to be the black skirt.

    Jonesy, that is a very valuable point of view about the shoes/ top. I was worried it might seem over the top or too matchy matchy.

    I think, though, it's okay if it's a bit theatrical. This IS theatre. The poetry book has 50s inspired cover art (not my book but an anthology I appear in) and the whole event is a bit retro. The book is called Desperately Seeking Susans and it's an anthology of poetry by Canadian poets all called SUSAN! So I was going for a sort of mixed 80s/ 50s vibe here quite deliberately. I should have been a bit more clear about that.

    Ann, thank you for the kind comments. The brooch is separate and belonged to my late MIL.

    K Can - that is amazing that you know a friend of Naomi's! It really IS a small world. I have been cooking from her books for many years and am excited to meet her.

  • Lyn D. replied 9 years ago

    Great outfit Suz , and the shoes look comfy and stylish at the same time.

  • Queen Mum replied 9 years ago

    I love it!!! just love it!

  • Angie replied 9 years ago

    Suz, I am out and about but would love to give my 2 cents on how to crisp up and minimize the outfit to make it stronger. To my eye anyway. Are you game to hear my ideas?

  • Suz replied 9 years ago

    Of course, Angie! Fire away!

  • rachylou replied 9 years ago

    The first pics show the navy skirt? I say lose it. That said, I like the whole outfit, the black and white, the echo in the shoes (very '50s), the bright fuchsia to shake it up, and the silver pin at the throat.

    I do think it could be crisper somehow. I'm not good at crisp, tho, so I for one would like to hear from Angie how to do it. My guess would be: thinner belt? No bracelet?

  • Angie replied 9 years ago

    Ah! I just read your ETA, Suz. In that case - this outfit might be what you want to represent at the event.

    FWIW, this is how I would style you:

    - I much prefer those shoes with trousers and jeans. I have them too - but hardly wear them because they are too high. That said, I do prefer those shoes with a substantial leg covering.

    - The Halogen skirt is perfect. Good job returning the other skirt.

    - Untuck the shirt and wear it over the skirt.

    - Add you new biker jacket and scrunch the sleeves, but do not show the cuffs of the shirt. Too maximal.

    - Wear micro fishnet hose with your animal print wedges.

    - Wear your specs.

    You could also wear the fuchsia jacket instead of the H&M biker.

  • Suz replied 9 years ago

    Angie - thank you so much. I think maybe I should post my other proposed outfits, too. The biker jacket figures in another one. I hear you on the Doc Saras. I get a Cartoonish feeling from them with skirts and dresses, too. They don't look like that on Shannon or Janet to me AT ALL. And this is similar to our conversation about the Blondo boots that work brilliantly on Shannon and Sarah but not so great on Kellygirl.

    My legs are nowhere near as slender as yours but they are probably more skinny than Shannon's, and certainly a heck of a lot shorter than Janet's. So the shoes that look perfectly proportionate on them look a bit cartoonish and TOO clunky on me with skirts. Am I right? For skirts and dresses, even if I want to go a bit chunky (and I can, because my legs are FAR from skinny) I still need to keep it in proportion?

    Re the fuchsia jacket sleeves -I TOTALLY agree this is a bit fussy and too maximal. Unfortunately, this jacket's sleeves do not unroll (fast fashion, H&M) so I am limited in what I can do here.

    I am so happy to get these critiques, Angie. Thank you SOOOOOO much for your precious time. I feel all the better because your comments are really echoing my internal hunches; I just can't always do anything about it with the materials to hand! But as I improve my wardrobe it feels as if my instincts are developing in the right direction. Your critiques are PRICELESS in helping validate this learning process.

    So... I have plans to wear the leopard pumps and the biker jacket at other events this weekend, and I have a feeling this is the right look for this event, which is really quite cartoonish in its very nature. Here is a link to the book:http://www.amazon.com/Desperately-Seeking-Susans-Sarah-Yi-Mei-Tsiang/dp/0889822875

    I can for sure wear my specs! Got some compliments on them today at my virtual meeting. ;-)

  • krishnidoux replied 9 years ago

    So sorry about your skirt! But it's already making your life complicated, return it. I love the blouse here! Can't wait for more...

  • Angie replied 9 years ago

    My pleasure :). It sounds like you are all sorted, Suz. This outfit *is* suppose to be kind of a costume, and for that reason it works.

    You need to fill out those shoes to wear them with skirts and dresses - I agree 100% with your assessment.

  • Suz replied 9 years ago

    Thanks, Angie. I will continue to post contending outfits for the other events. I am still uncertain about tomorrow's reading. Couldn't get pictures of alternative outfits today - may post early in the morning!

    I am sorted for Thursday. Still working on Friday and Sunday as well as Wednesday daytime.

  • pil replied 9 years ago

    The styling ideas are all over my head Suz. I just wanted to say I think you look great and I love the color combination.

    How exciting for you. My 23 year old son would love to be a poet. While still in college he met a woman from Toronto who works with promoting poetry. He thought that sounded like a pretty awesome job.

  • kellygirl replied 9 years ago

    Just chiming in to say that I love this outfit and am so glad that you posted it. It's so helpful to read everyone's comments.

  • catgirl replied 9 years ago

    Okay, so now that Angie posted, I'm slinking back to say that I felt the Docs were a bit off here - the white toes and shape makes them look a bit "cartoonish" as you said with skirts. I had to sell mine because they were just too hard to style for me. I'm all for clunky shoes, but the really rounded white toe is what makes them look funny to my eye here.

    *slinking away again*

  • Transcona Shannon replied 9 years ago

    Guess I'm the only Doc Sara lover still around these days...

    You are right about the leg mattering in how those shoes look though Suz - I have bigger calves (well bigger legs all over really) and that helps to somehow "balance" the chunkier shoe.

  • Ariadne replied 9 years ago

    Suz, you're sorted on this outfit from the sounds of it, but I am laughing and laughing about that book! I hadn't heard of it before but now I'm going through my mental list of Canadian poets, ticking of the Sues/Susans. And wow, there are a lot of them! Too, too, too funny. I will have to check it out.

  • Deborah replied 9 years ago

    Suz, glad Angie chimed in. I struggled with elements of the outfit being 'costumy' and a little contrived but was unsure how to streamline it and still achieve what you were wanting.

    I do agree those shoes are fabulous and seem to work best with a trouser. You know I went back on forward on those for ages and finally decided they were not for me:(

    But I am confused, what have you actually decided to go with?

  • Ana replied 9 years ago

    Great cover! I would definitely pick that up off a bookshelf or a table if I saw it.

  • Suz replied 9 years ago

    Deborah, I'm going with this look for this particular event, as "costume" is pretty much what I want. As I said, the event has a 50s/80s retro feel to it, and after all, I am appearing on stage in a reading -- being a bit over the top is fine in this context. BUT I will retire the shoes from wear with dresses in future and eventually look for a more streamlined and slightly more refined pair to serve that purpose. ;-)

    I will also see if there is a way to roll the shirt's sleeves so they stay hidden inside. I am not sure I can due to the permanently rolled sleeve of the jacket, but I will try. I hope that will satisfy the collective wisdom of YLF.

    Meanwhile, I may choose a DIFFERENT outfit for the early morning event, if I can find a way to change on site. I don't have time to come and go during the day (I don't think). Plus, with my very minimal closet, I am running low on outfits!

    Ariadne, the editor is Sarah Tsiang - you might know her.

  • rachylou replied 9 years ago

    I think that's a smart choice, Suz. Being on stage is very different from being on the street. You have a lot of presence with this outfit "costume" and I think the saddle shoes are a great nod for the '50s theme.

    Actually, the moto jacket is perfect for the theme too, now that I think about it. James Dean anyone? LOL.

  • Deborah replied 9 years ago

    Thanks Suz. Given the context, the outfit is fun and probably very appropriate. The color of the jacket is lovely on you.

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