Monday, July 7, 2014

Real Simple

Just to be clear, the title of this post refers to my dressing philosophy this summer, NOT the magazine of the same name, which promises to make your life easier, and to that end, contains articles about such topics as;  "why laughing is good for you and how we can do it more often", "build sand castles like a pro", "decorating with gray" and "the best tropical prints for your body type" (articles that have appeared in the last three months).  Magazines like this make me feel hopelessly disorganized and domestically useless, which is why I don't buy them, no matter how tempting it may be to read 10 Tips to Becoming a Morning Person (because I'm not) and How to Make Salted Caramel-Chocolate Pecan Pie (because it sounds sooooo yummy).

So I will stick to what I know, which is inexpensive, easy and fun summer dressing, and lately, it's all been about one simple piece.

I've had some pretty good luck at the second-hand stores over the last couple of weeks.  I found this streamlined cotton dress, made by Toronto-based company, Olio Eco and Organics, at Value Village.  There's no label except for the size tag, but I saw the same dress in a different pattern at their booth at Sunfest this past weekend, selling for around $75.   I paid $12 for mine so I felt pretty good about that.  The colours aren't particularly exciting, but I love stripes and the simple shape with big pocket and side drape detail make it the best thing to pull on when it's really humid. 

This photo doesn't do justice to the dress, but it shows off my perfectly-curled curls of which I was very proud - they lasted three days, thanks to the wonder of hairspray.

I purchased this jumpsuit at Lovesick, a local vintage store, about two years ago.  I still love the colours and how you feel like you're wearing your pajamas, but you're not (unlike the girls I see on the bus, who actually are wearing their polar bear print pajama bottoms).  Again, throw on one piece,  shoes and jewellery, and you're good to go.

Heather and I, along with our mutual friend Jen, spent part of Friday afternoon at Sunfest.  We divided our time between checking out the vendor's booths, and sprawling on a blanket enjoying spring rolls, churros, pupusas and other tasty snacks.  Heather is wearing a cute dress she purchased at a friend's sale, and I'm wearing a dress purchased by another friend in Arizona many years ago and gifted to me last spring when she was purging her wardrobe.  Friday was cool in comparison to the temperatures we had earlier in the week, so the heavy cotton of the dress was quite comfortable.  If it was all black, the dress would be too severe but the embroidery on the hem and the sleeves made it festival-worthy, and I added a circle of purple feathers to my hair that I found at The Fairies Pajamas booth.  I didn't think that it looked that crazy, but judging from the number of people whom I caught motioning to their companions to "look at her hair", I apparently am not the best judge on those kinds of things.

Remember I said I would show you which necklace I purchased from the store I featured in my previous post?

 I had never seen a Johnny Eck necklace before, and as I feel like I've been letting my own freak flag fly a little higher these days, it seemed appropriate.  I think that Desiree would approve.


  1. I really really like your hair and the purple feather circle thing or headband!!

  2. Ooh, nice necklace! That movie is freaky (hee hee).

    I did a double-take - is that her hair sticking up? I love it - I would have been admiring it to your face. Love all your loose, lovely clothes, especially that fabulous black dress.

  3. Love your curls, and I want to call you Shirl just to make it rhyme! One-piece dressing is so efficient (just add panties and go!), and all of your clothes have style in spite of their simplicity. People who wear pajamas in public are just dumb.

    I didn't know who the eck Johnny was until I followed your link. I must see Freaks one of these days.

  4. I love that black dress - it seems so un-you but very you at the same time. I hope you wear it a lot because it's smashing. And the purple feathers. Who knows what sets off the normals? It could be the smallest little thing. I love how you included the feathers. I'd probably nudge my friend too to say, look that that awesome woman, and then come over to meet you. The striped dress and one-piece look perfect for the heat. I remember London heat...

  5. You look glorious at the festival (that sounds just like my kind of day out), love the pockets on the striped dress - it does look marvellously cool to wear and you know I'm a big fan of that insane jumpsuit unlike wearing fleecey novelty pyjamas on the bus (or anywhere outside of the bedroom!)
    Love that necklace and your curls rock! xxx

  6. When we were visiting the UK in January we saw a woman walking down the street in her robe. The grocery retailer Tesco has publicly asked its shoppers not to shop in their PJs. Wow.

    I love every wonderful outfit! You look wonderful. Xo

  7. Shelley, you're staying cool in every sense of the word! That giant striped pocket and your curls are my favourites, but only by a hair.

  8. Love that comfy feeling about putting on a dress, slipping your feet in a pair of sandals, throwing on yourself some massive bijouterie, and then running out to do whatever it must to be done!. Of course, your striped dress is amazing, love the shape and love the great pocket (every dress is So Much Better with pockets!!). Also love your jumpsuit and converse combo, comfy and cool are fabulous qualities and you rock them!!
    And so pretty black dress, you look elegantly bohemian and love your purple headpiece over your curly hair, so awesome accessorizing!
    besos & curls

  9. Love this summer dressing - one piece and you're ready. Your hair looks fantastic, I need some of that hairspray. xox

  10. love the curls. I'll keep my life "Real Simple" by not reading that magazine. It's so full of advice and tips that it's alot of work to get to the simple life.

  11. Chocolate salted caramel pecan pie? Mmmmm...sounds tasty!
    Your outfits are so cool! Your big silver ring, leather cuff, and purple feathers are the perfect accessories.
    The curls are so cute. Your new color looks amazing on you.

  12. I feel like I am dressing the same way, give me one simple thing cotton preferably its too dam hot for much anything else. That jumper is mad and I love it on you but the curls are what are making me super happy, look at how cute and perfect they are!!!! I love the feathers you added too and that outfit is so festival worthy!

  13. Hi Shelley,

    Tks for your comment , it's nice to be back finally! I'm getting use to the meds, not so bad side effects now, so that's good cause i have to double the dose at the end of the week -
    You look happy Shelley, love your easy simple style, that's is the way to go these days!
    Isn't nice the nice warm temps we are having, i'm totally enjoying my summer!
    Love your hair so much - Good job you did on the curls

    Hugs and take care


  14. Curls! They're gorgeous!
    Oh I agree, a dress or easy one-piece of any description is the perfect solution to hot temperatures. Love that stripy frock, so easy to wear, and the jumpsuit is fabulous. The black embroidered dress reminds me of my similar styled navy one - perfect for a festival, with added feathers, of course! xxxx

  15. O, that first frock is sheer Summery perfection! Simple dressing is something I find really difficult.
    Your HAIR is rocking my WORLD!!! XXX

  16. Oh, I absolutely love that dress. I want to make one - it's got a really big pocket! Now what's this about a side drape detail? I must see another view to really understand it. It fits you perfectly and with those curls of yours, you look divine together.

  17. Although I love the lines of that first frock I have to say I much prefer you when you wear colour. Funny how I've gotten so used to that.

    The second outfit I love. Much more vibrant.

    That necklace is cool. And yes...I said cool. Whatever...I'm old. And yes...I just wrote whatever. ; )

    Great job on the curls! When I curl mine I'm lucky if it lasts 20 minutes. Did you use curlers and a wet set?


  18. Your hair is awesome and so it that jumpsuit especially with those sneakers. Sniggered over your comment about girls in pyjamas. Never heard of Johnny Eck, but I do like that necklace.

  19. Love all your summer gear and the hair as well! The dress you wore to Sunfest is elegant and timeless. My take on certain items of clothing in public, and one which I need to get off my chest every so often is as follows:
    Pyjamas are not pants. Leggings are not pants. And bedroom slippers are definitely not shoes!!! :-)

  20. Love both dresses and the jumpsuit! Your curls are most impressive and I want to know how you keep the from getting fuzzy when you sleep. I love the purple feathers and am now convinced I need some.

  21. Your hair is awesome!!! Your HAIR is rocking my WORLD!!!


  22. That's the best necklace ever and your hair is ART!! LOVE it!