Thursday, July 5, 2012

Wear your best frocks

Potty Mummy posted recently about not saving your good clothes for best. Throw caution to the wind and wear your best stuff for the school run or the weekly shop - and don't worry about the odd looks you'll get. Everyone cruises the dairy aisle in kitten heels these days.

It made me think however, that I've been leading a bit of a double life. When I'm in England, even my mother comments (occasionally) on how "smart" I look. (For any Americans reading, this means that I look spiffy or well put together rather than "intelligent".) In the States, since I work from home and usually only leave the house to do the school run, I slob around in jeans and a t-shirt. In short, I'm not generally known for my dress sense.

It's not that I'm trying to impress anyone in the UK, or have no respect for the Americans I hang out with, it's all about airline baggage restrictions. I'm usually in the UK for at least a month, and have various events to attend (this summer a wedding, two parties, a funeral and a conference). This means I need to pack very smartly (used in the American sense.) Everything has to be co-ordinated, and scruffy t-shirts with limited usage are just not in the running. The end result is a woman who wears co-ordinating scarves, interesting jewelry and un-scuffed shoes. (Tip - these scarves are great for pulling together otherwise non-matching garments). Even the young porter in the Hoxton Hotel commented on how my multi-coloured scarf matched my purple shirt and my bright pink bag. (See what I mean about scarves - I'd never usually do purple and pink like that.) And yes - I know that he was just being a big suck-up, but he still commented on my co-ordinated outfit rather than the weather.

And dear, sweet Michelle Twin Mum actually tweeted that I am "one glamorous lady", after she saw me at the BritMumsLive conference. Definitely should wear more of them there fancy scarves and bright colours.

Meanwhile in the US, apart from it being too bloody hot to wear scarves and other interesting stuff, I'm back to plain t-shirts and capris or Gap skirts. (Not doing shorts, thank you.)

I keep thinking I should do like Potty and make more of an effort for everyday things, but really - the school run? I mean, that would require getting up 15 minutes earlier each morning to think about what I was going to wear instead of picking it off the back of the chair grabbing the first thing on the hanger.

I think I'm doing well with my motto - As long as it's clean!


  1. Come on, admit it. You save the best for us :)

  2. Your every day dress is like mine Toni. A clothes horse, I am not. Would rather spend my money on other things. I consider that "smart."

  3. I don't know about you, but there is not much point being 'smart' in America (in the clothes sense). Most women round here are very casual, dressing in gym gear or jeans - it's only ever for parties that they dress up. And there's definitely no dressing for the school run - my husband says he thinks most of the mums round here wear their PJs to the schoolbus stop!

  4. NVG - yes, most of my school mum friends go straight from drop-off to the gym so are always to be seen in (designer?) workout gear. They also wear their hair in ponytails with a baseball cap, which is where I draw the line.

  5. I'm Canadain and will admit to making that school run in yoga pants and a pony tail...which is a step above a couple of Moms who do the drop in their PJs!!

  6. I'm with you on the heat - I swear I live in skirts and a t-shirt, or loose sun dresses these days. I miss being able to layer a bit more, but the sun is lovely a lot of the time!

  7. When we were packing, I was shocked to see that I have a whole drawerful of lovely scarves (well, some more lovely than others). I knew I had a few, but had forgotten I've got so many. I'll have to get back into the habit of wearing them.

  8. I was going to say we must meet up next time you are in the UK but am now truly daunted by how put together and glam you are in your UK incarnation. I seem to have forgotten how after six years up my hill. Tried to dress up for a do last week and couldn't wear what I had intended as I seem to have become incapable of wearing heels all day. I am well on the way to becoming a bag lady. I suppose I could aim for a pink and purple bag lady. That would frighten the locals.


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