I’ll never forget my first encounter with the Irish writer Roddy Doyle. Back in the nineties, Hubby and I watched the movie The Commitments, based on Doyle’s book of the same name. We loved it. It has great music, quirky characters, humour and pathos (uh…of course.. it’s Irish), lots of swearing, and that weird combination of despair and hope that the Irish do so well. I was off to the library the next day to find Roddy Doyle’s books. One expression that stuck with me from that movie, and from its sequel The Snapper, is “messin’ with ya.” You know, as in “Don’t get mad. I’m just messin’ wit’ ya.” I don’t really mean it. I’m just playing around, teasing.
So that’s what I’ve been doing this week with some of my new wardrobe pieces. Just messin’ with them. Playing around. Seeing what works and what doesn’t.
In particular I wanted to play with my new black, cropped “Simone” pants from Rag and Bone. These are high-waisted, lovely and stretchy, and skinny, without adhering to my legs like leggings. The Rag and Bone website says that the “four -way stretch material was originally developed for Olympic level equestrian riders.” Ok-ay. Then they definitely shouldn’t bag in the knees on me. Since I won’t be doing any riding in them, only maybe sitting down to lunch for a couple of hours. I’m also wearing my new Eileen Fisher tunic which you’ve already seen in this post. And. And. On my feet are my new Paul Green Lydia flats. Black suede with laces. These are the result of my search for a shoe to wear with my new black and white striped midi-skirt. And they were on sale. Yah.
So the pants look great with the shoes. You were right about that, Liz. And I like both with this tunic top. But I thought it needed something on the neck. Maybe. And since I don’t really do “statement necklaces” it had to be a scarf. I’ve had this white chiffon, white on white print scarf hanging in my closet since I retired. It was a gift from a student who said, kind of breathlessly when I opened the package, that she loved clothes, and she knew I loved clothes, and since she loved this scarf, she was sure I would love it too. That’s pretty much a direct quote. I was touched. And the scarf is lovely. I’ve just never been sure about that fringe. And I’m not sure about it now. As you can see. I may throw it on when I wear this outfit and see how long it lasts before I stuff it in my bag. That’s usually the test for me with unusual accessories. If I go into the lady’s room at the restaurant, look into the mirror, and cringe… into the bag it goes.
When I started hauling things out of my closet yesterday, the original plan was to find tops to go with the black pants and shoes. And I thought my loose, short-sleeved Vince tee shirt (which is very casual) would work with my black Helmut Lang jacket (which is a bit structured, and more serious.) But, you know, combined with the black pants and shoes, this combo is too serious. Too “work-y.” Even ecclesiastical. Could I throw on the fringed scarf and make that work? Uh…no. This outfit is not going to happen. Maybe with faded jeans. But probably not.
Then as I stored the white scarf away, and was about to change, I spied this colourful scarf. I bought it from a lovely lady at the Chivay market in Peru. Maybe this is what I should wear to book club tonight? Serious and studious with a dash of colour. Almost collegiate. We’re discussing Amor Towles book A Gentleman in Moscow. And one needs to be at least a littleserious to discuss Russia, don’t you think?
This is a better look at the scarf I bought in Peru. You can see that it has several Inca symbols on it: the mountain, the puma, the llama, the symbol for Pachamama or mother earth, and the condor. Cool, eh?
Okay, enough messin’. For now. I’ve lots of time tomorrow, or the next day, to play with my new black pants and shoes. But I have to leave for my book club in just over two hours, and… akkkk… I still have almost two hundred pages of A Gentleman in Moscow left to read.
No. Wait. As my stepdad used to say in times of emergency when the rest of us bustled around stressed and stressing, “Now, just hold on a minute here. Let’s not get too excited.” Good advice. Because I know I’ll never finish that book in time. That would require rushing. And this is not a book to be rushed through. This is a book to be savoured. Stopping every few pages to ruminate about Towles’ use of language, or an interesting idea, and maybe discuss that idea with Hubby. Which is the reason, of course, that I’m only on page 293. Sigh.
Maybe instead of rushing through the book, I’ll focus instead on what I’m going to wear tonight. That at least I can achieve in the time I have left.
It’s good to set reasonable and achievable goals, I always say. See how much we can learn from our parents?
And while I decamp to my bedroom closet, have a look at the trailer for the movie The Commitments. I do love this film.
So. What have you been messin’ around with lately, my friends?
High Heels in the Wilderness is for women like me. Women who love clothes. And books. Who dream of travelling to amazing places. Who want to explore their own lives, and their own potential, now that they aren't twenty (or even forty) anymore.