My Fashion Uniform

When I saw this dress it was marked as sold, but I had a feeling about it...I messaged the seller to say that if the original buyer didn't end up paying for any reason to let me know as I would happily take the dress. About a week later she responded that the buyer had indeed backed out, I paid on the spot, and shortly after this dreamy number came to take up residence in my wardrobe. It's actually a wee departure from my usual style right now as it is patterned--I've mostly been wearing solid colors for the past few months, but this classic print and soft colors feels like a perfect fit for early spring. I feel like nearly every color in this dress can be found in the rhododendron bush I'm standing beside. It's vintage, likely from the 1960s or 1970s, but has a more antique-inspired look than that era--like those classic Laura Ashley dresses that are becoming all the rage again. There was a period when her designs were considered dated and dowdy even with their long hems and high collars, but the fashion pendulum is swinging back again and people are once more drawn to the classic silhouettes and natural fabrics; which I think would please the designer mightily.    plaiddress-12 plaiddress-15I've been reading more about Laura Ashley's origins and one of her early inspirations was her uniform as a Wren in World War II; her goal when designing was to create pieces that could work almost as a fashion uniform. Timeless pieces that would last forever and that people wouldn't need to replace often. She said, "I don't like ephemeral things; I like things that last forever…" Which is just such a lovely sentiment and something she has achieved not just because her styles are popular once again, but because many of us are stalking her actual vintage dresses on resell sites. Her pieces have lasted quite a long time and are often still in excellent condition because of the emphasis on natural fibers and the quality of production; simply put they made clothes that could physically last many wears and washes. Looking at her classic styles and my own style repetition in the past year and I feel as if I'm inching towards my own fashion uniform.  plaiddress-34-side
vintage dress & basket, fairytale rings by GoodAfterNine
plaiddress-10 plaiddress-26 plaiddress-24 plaiddress-20-sideThere's far less experimentation in my style these days, more repetition of silhouettes and colors, and I wonder if I have developed a fashion uniform. When I do a remix it tends to be the same dress worn multiple times, but not multiple ways--I know how I like to wear that dress, why try to be avant garde when I can be comfortable? We tend to picture uniforms as school dress codes or even military designs, but really what makes a uniform is consistency. A personal uniform can be as specific and personal as one desires. So perhaps this is my uniform: retro and romantic and rural. plaiddress-38 plaiddress-39 plaiddress-5
vintage dress & basket, fairytale rings by GoodAfterNine


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