champs-élysées chic

March 24, 2010 at 10:59 am 7 comments

Oh my word, would you look at this thrifted dress I scored for $14 at Crossroads Trading Co. this weekend?

Retro-rific dress by 2 Friends (size 10), black shrug: White House Black Market, grey tights: Express.

There are a few issues with this dress – it’s just a bit large, and the zipper gets caught at the seam (so I decided to just keep it mostly zipped and slip it over my head), but all things considered, I am in looove with it! Oh la la, it feels so European – and not just because of the French icons scattered throughout the print. Something about the colors, the almost frenetic-brushwork look of the print – can’t you just see me strolling the banks of the Seine or cruising the streets of Italy on a Vespa in this?

Check the print (click for larger) – this actually reminded me of something my friend Jackie (super talented artist – check her portfolio and print shop!) would wear:

Here you see a wash of pink, salmon, yellow, and coral accenting arches and buildings, including landmarks such as the Eiffel Tower and (possibly – can’t tell) Sacré-Cœur. I don’t know if I have a more fun print in my closet. It is so cheerful and has such movement and energy to it – surprising, considering it’s depicting stationary objects.

Since it’s just a bit loose, I thought I’d do a little visual comparison of what this looks like without and with a belt:

I’m not convinced this was the right belt to choose (Ralph Lauren, thrifted), but I was running late and didn’t have time to weigh my options. In any case, I think you can see that, while the dress looked “just aight for me, dog” (to quote Randy Jackson) on the left, adding a belt to cinch it in at the waist made a big difference to the look on the right and really defined a shape. Such an easy thing to do!

The bodice also has a few sequins sewn just here and there, like so:

Mustard ruffled Mary Janes by xhilaration:

Gradient grey-to-black baubles from Burlington Coat Factory:

Confession: I’ve had this set (one of very few matching sets I own) for months and have never worn the necklace until now. It somehow always looked “not quite right” with whatever I tried, but I think this is perfect. The cool greys and blacks balance the bright pastel print, and the retro look of the baubles really plays up the retro feel of the dress, I think.

Oh, how I wish I was in Paris right now. Allons-y, mes amis!


Entry filed under: What I Wore. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , .

argyle & uggs leafy green

7 Comments Add your own

  • 1. jadeylangley  |  March 24, 2010 at 11:17 am

    Love the dress! What an amazing find, looks like it was made for you!

    • 2. Cara  |  March 24, 2010 at 11:32 am

      Thank you! I almost didn’t get it because of the zipper, but I loved it too much to let that stop me. Could try to have it fixed, but I’ve had that done before and STILL had trouble getting the zipper over the seam of a dress. Frustrating!

  • 3. Jackie  |  March 24, 2010 at 11:22 am

    Thanks for the shout out! :)

    I love the dress – it would also look good with either a brown leather belt (lighter more than darker) or one of those wide canvas belts with leather accents (maybe something like this|0||p_weight|0&rec=1&pn=c&imagePath=BT3613231)

    I’m still debating on that Anthropologie dress. I’m going to be by a store tomorrow, so I want to stop in and see if they have one I can try on.

    • 4. Cara  |  March 24, 2010 at 11:33 am

      But of course! When I saw the print, it just really reminded me of you and your style. :)

      I LOVE the Fossil belt you linked to, oh man… you’re right, those are good options. I can’t wait to wear it in spring/summer – the straps have a cute little knot in them, too.

      I didn’t see that dress when I stopped in my Anthro – but then again, I wasn’t looking for it. Good luck!

  • 5. Amy M.  |  March 24, 2010 at 4:56 pm

    LOVE that dress. Makes me want to go to Paris too!
    PS i’m guessing that sequins shot is a closeup of your boob. Rawr.

  • 6. EverydayChicNY  |  March 25, 2010 at 4:43 am

    I love the print on that dress and the colors. Looks awesome on you and nothing better than getting a deal!!

    • 7. Cara  |  March 25, 2010 at 11:43 am

      Thanks! Seriously – $14? Could not say no! :)


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20-something Chicagoan, pop culture lover, and graduate of the Clinton Kelly School of Fashion, sharing & snarking on shoes, frocks, jackets, patterns, textures, trends, celebs & more


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