#16. FASHION AS FANTASY

by admin on February 5, 2011

too small!

sequins

“fashion is about fantasy” a sage once said, and esme agrees.  fantasy can be a wonderful thing, allowing one to wear an outfit in imagination to functions one would never attend (the inaugural ball, a ladies’ luncheon, a punk rock concert, a grand opera in paris..).  

most shopping fantasies exist just below the surface of conscious awareness;  you love yourself in the outfit and couldn’t put your finger on why.  if your husband does not share your semi-conscious fantasy, he may struggle without success to understand the appeal of a purple felt hat with a feather to the side, or that pair of velvet riding jodphurs you have fallen in love with.  he may wonder whom you had in mind when you tried on the pale green teddy and silk tap pants that make you feel, inexplicably, like a mermaid. 

i stumbled into a fantasy that was doomed for disaster while shopping in a little carmel boutique on new year’s eve.  as i began to thumb through the sale rack i was startled to hear a high-pitched and rather loud voice exclaim:  “but how will i ever get out of it when i go home drunk and i’m by myself?”  said her friend, “well, you’d have to have someone go home with you, wouldn’t you?” 

how could i resist peaking around the corner, where an extravagantly busty young woman was squeezed into a tiny, shiny halter top dress with sequins and satin??  her friend brought her the next size up, but that didn’t work.  the salesgirl had tried other dresses without success.  she tried on the tiny dress again, evidently hoping it would fit better the second time.  finally, thank the goddess of fashion, her friend dragged her out of the store, as the unfortunate woman carried on in a pitiful whine about how she really really wanted that dress and only that dress, and if only it had been a little less this way and more that way, maybe if she tried it on one more time….. 

which is not to say that esme herself has not fallen into the trap of wishing an item would magically be different if she tugged at it a different way, or that the color would really look fine with just the right scarf, or that the small would most certainly stretch rather than shrink if washed…..anything but admit that the item is JUST NOT RIGHT.

longingly,

esme

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