Thursday, March 31, 2011

Super top secret prep school ninja, or, Return of the Sailor Pants

Someone I adore recently referred to my style as "preppy", and I almost died. PREPPY?!? Then I looked over at my closet, and realized she was dead on. Stripes, tweed, nautical and equestrian styling, blue oxfords, neatly cuffed jeans, sheath dresses, little cardigans, silk scarves, boy's jackets...and no amount of clogs can possibly cancel out the all the riding boots and boat shoes and ballet flats. I'm not sure at what point I started gravitating to the classic staples of the American sportswear tradition, or why, but it probably had something or other to do with wanting to dress like my super chic grandparents.

Also, I think being one inch shy of being legally classified as a little person has a lot to do with it. Really! Most of the time when I shop retail or consignment, I have to buy petites. Nothing else fits. And clothing for petites tends to...err on the side of caution. Why is that? The plus size dept. is enviably full of COLOR! BOHEMIA! SELF EXPRESSION! While apparently petites are just uptight and waspy as hell. That's actually one of the reasons I gravitate so much toward vintage; it allows me a wider range of stylistic freedom and a decent fit. And sequins.

I'll be honest, this outfit stemmed entirely from the lipstick. I had just ended my quest for the perfect shade of cherry blossom pink (see header for reference), when I spotted this adorable stripey top in the window of H&M. What do you know, it was on sale for $3, which is just about what I'm willing to pay for something from H&M, so I brought it home and married it to my favorite vintage trousers. They're gonna make the cutest babies, right?

As you can see, by the time I got around to taking the lipstick shot (is it just me, or does that sound a bit scandalous?), I had added to the ensemble. This is usually how it goes. I start the day with well intentioned minimalism and end it dripping in jewels.

Striped tee, H&M, $3
Vintage sailor pants, Buffalo Exchange, $12
Cardigan, Target, $17
Resin bangle, Target, $8
JPK nylon pochette, TJ Maxx, $7
Steve Madden clogs, Ross, $20
Vintage coral necklace, gift from mum
Lipstick, Revlon Super-lustrous creme in Primrose, Target, $7

P.S. For those of you who lovingly advise me not to have my bluebells hemmed, darlings, I must! They drag on the ground, even with my very tallest shoes, and that makes them very impractical. But for reference, I'm thinking I'll hem them a bit longer than these, so just the toes of my shoes peek out. I might even have these let out a bit while I'm at it, if only for the novelty value!


  1. Best story ever. No, really. I read the whole thing and laughed out loud. That T-shirt is totally worth $3 - I'm not an H&M fan either, but for 3 bucks you made the right decision by going in. I love the lipstick on you (and yes, lipstick shot does sound a bit off) and you can't go wrong with sailor pants.

    Also, preppy? Really? I wouldn't say you were a true prep, but I'd need to read that book to be sure. I'll let you know. ;-)

  2. I can tell you right now, I'm not a true prep. I don't own a polo shirt, for one thing. Thank God! I'm more like some chimerical preppy-hippy hybrid. I totally thought of you while I was in Salem!

  3. I love this outfit, those wideleg pants paired with bright stripes and accessories are so chic! XOXO,

  4. The shirt is so great I would make the trip to H&M to get it if it was any other store. You can't find stuff the next day after it arrives, let alone if it's already $3.

  5. Those pants are phenomenal! I wouldn't call your style preppy, I'd call it "cheeky"!

  6. I MUST track down a pair of those britches. I actually wear a few petite pieces...because I'm slender, but sleeve and leg length can give me problems.

  7. Love this striped shirt (and for $3?!!! WOW) and the sailor pants are great. I also adore the clogs...okay, I just love the whole darn thing.

  8. Haha, preppy is not the word to describe your style, but I don't know what would. You have the perfect mix of vintage and vintage-preppy (not like J Crew preppy, more like sailor pants preppy...)

    HAha, that doesn't make sense at all.

  9. Oh wait, I forgot to tell you that your lipstick color is amazing. So pretty!

  10. I accidentally stumbled upon a prep blog because my fat fingers pressed my sensitive fruit phone's touch screen. The post just happened to list out different types of preppy. This may be New England prep circa Katharine Hepburn? I dunno. You look fab in those sailor pants! I totally wouldn't have guessed you 5'5"? One inch taller than petite height, right?
    Jen Hemming and Hawing Again

    P.S. Came back here to tell you that my word verification was "perfi."

  11. This makes me think of bubble gum and carnivals.

    I love the multi-color stripe idea. And aren't you just the prettiest lady ever in your pretty pink lipstick? {as I said that in my head, I realized how awfully sarcastic it sounded, but that sarcasm is not the least bit intended. I do think you look pretty and I do think that the lipstick is pretty too.}

    Did I just dig myself into the hole further?

    And yes, pretty little trousershirt babies. I can't wait to name them!


  12. I love the wide legged jeans, the top, your cute hairstyle, the clogs...everything!