Friday, September 16, 2011

breaking the rules...

Vintage silk blouse, J Crew cord pencil skirt, Zara green patent belt
When I wore this blouse last week, I reflected on how lucky it was that I've kept it all these years.  You know that maxim that you should discard unworn articles of clothing if they've been in your closet over a year?  Well, I laugh in their faces (while distracting them as much as possible from seeing the cluttered overload behind me).  As a long-time thrifter who has finally come into the vintage style I've sometimes shopped for (I didn't always have the nerve or the lifestyle to wear silks and funky blouses and big 50's dresses, though I still sometimes bought them) I'm so happy that this silk crepe blouse with hand-painted floral detail has waited patiently for me to come around to loving it.  I've had it since at least 1997, when I loaned it to a friend, and I believe I only wore it once or twice before that!  The details were so beautiful I kept it through countless rounds of culls, and now that I'm wearing blouses finally, it looks like a happy future for us.

Now, while I may be strong and stubborn when it comes to keeping things and 'curating' a wardrobe,  this dogged determination has recently hurt me when it came to acquiring an article of clothing I loved.  I'm pretty deliberate when shopping online to reflect carefully and bring in those pieces that actually bring me pleasure and feel like 'me'.  Last fall I asked a personal shopper to help me when I fell absolutely for a dress at Anthropologie- I couldn't wait for it to hit Canadian stores, and I wanted it as soon as possible, especially since it cost more here.  I had a credit with her for another transaction that didn't 'work out', and I felt petty to just ask for my money back since she was unemployed, so I sent her the website link and more money, thinking it wouldn't be long before the d'Armee dress arrived.  Well, close to a year of pitiful excuses and promises that it would ship, including raised hopes when it went on sale in early spring, I finally got a refund earlier this week...when it was revealed that actually hundreds of others have been waiting for their things to never arrive as well.  Legal proceedings, proceed.  The scale of deception is astounding and I feel terrible to see all the people that have been hurting in silence, many of whom I 'know' through the community.

I blame myself for not wanting to give in- I knew she was lying, but I thought if I held out she would have to admit she never had the dress for me in the first place (though she bought one soon after receiving my payment and posted it on her blog, now defunct).  And of course the irony is that in my need to get this as soon as possible, I missed getting it at all! I also blame myself for being too nice- it seemed like she was just massively disorganized and covering for it, so I gave her time and tried to tone down the anger in my messages.  I had witnessed glimpses of vicious self-defence on her blog, so didn't want to upset the friendly tone with someone holding my money ransom.  Yep, that's about it.  I didn't mean to write about this, actually, but I find myself drawn to the discussions that have been raging on the topic this week (succinct and thoughtful summaries here and here) and thought I should just get it out there and put it behind me.

Ugh.  Now, let's talk pretty blouses next time!

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