02 December 2007

Hello, my name is Johanna, and I'm a high-neckline-aholic

First, there was this.

Followed by this.

Then this.

And this.

Oh, and then there was this.

And now, after what is embarrassingly the eleventh like-cut addition to my wardrobe in less than one calendar year, we have this:


And from ze back:


Two months ago, Hot Redhead Lawyer mentioned in passing that she'd seen a dress at Club Monaco that immediately made her think of me.


"Black, knee-length, shoulder baring, funnel-neck -- it was 'you' right down to the modest little keyhole."


A few weeks after she first came upon it, the two of us found ourselves in the Georgetown store on a post-brunch shopping excursion. Right away, before HRL could confirm it was in fact the same dress, I recognized it, wanted it, looked at the price-tag (then $179.99), hemmed, mentally shuffled through my inventory of LBWD*, hawed, and finally returned the hanger to its resting place.


"How come?" my painfully chic friend asked when I answered "no" to her, "Are you trying it on?"


"I just can't justify it right now," I replied. "Anyway, it's wool -- what is it outside, 88 degrees? I couldn't even begin to think about knowing how to wear Fall fabrics right now," I said with such matter-of-fact-edness it was clear I didn't believe a word of what I'd just said.


With my decision semi-firmly made, we made our way past the security guard and out the double glass doors, but not before I could shoot my dress a melodramatic, palms-against-the-prison-glass "maybe one day..." look over my right shoulder.


Since then, I've thought about her on occasion (you might have noticed items tend to shift from the neuter to the feminine once a bond is formed), most notably the time I saw her on another, much squatter woman who happened to be in wedged peep-toes of all unfortunate footwear options and whose fleshy, untoned shoulders really shouldn't have "gone there," to use a euphemistic colloquialism.


In the moment, I couldn't decide which was more tragic, that this woman had her and I didn't or the fact that her seams were stretched to the near-burst point, her hemline was inadvertently raised by the girth of this woman's mid-section and that her under-sleeves were clearly caked with deodorant.


Either way, it didn't matter. I still had too many blouses and dresses with similar necklines in the same color -- there was no need to add to the collection another sister, especially one whose price-point was just high enough that it would affect that month's budget.


Fast-forward four weeks to yesterday afternoon.


Finally getting off my duff after watching four straight hours of "True Life" episodes I'd already seen, I sojourned over to the Pentagon City Nordstrom to return two didn't-fit items and to snap up my sister-in-law a _______ from the _______ department for Christmas. A half hour later, I somehow wandered my way into a Club Monaco fitting room with my want-it-but-still-didn't-need-it dress.


Excuse me, my want-it-but-still-didn't-need-it, on-sale dress.


Am I right, or am I right that when something you know you don't need drops in price from $179.99 to $79.99 (then add an additional 15%-off savings from an in-store coupon) it has a tendency to creep into the maybe-I-actually-do-need-it category?


After all, once I have Mr. Lee raise the hem an inch and a half, it'll be the perfect post-work holiday party dress**, and at last count, I only had five or six of those to go around...


*LBWD = little black work dress

**to be worn with a cropped swing jacket, of course, between 9 and 6

18 comments:

olivia said...

as happy as I am for you that you finally got this dress, you have to empathize with my plight -- I bought it at full price just over 2 weeks ago. Grr...

I'm sure you already know it, but your upper body was made for that neckline, and that's probably why you're so obsessed with it!

Anonymous said...

I love your haircut.

Anonymous said...

that's an amazing deal for a dress like that. goes perfectly with your super short cut. unfortunately we don't have a club monaco here and I guess they don't sell online :-(

call it what it is said...

I think you meant to write, "Hello, my name is Johanna, and I'm an egomaniac."

faithful reader said...

whatever, CiWii.

J, your hair is seriously having me considering a chop. It's so super cute and it looks fairly easy to maintain. how long does it take you in the morning to get it the way you want it?

Anonymous said...

love the dress!!

new reader said...

I'm new to your site, but like everyone else here (aside from "call it what it is"), I have to compliment you on your hair and dress. So few women find a look that brings out their beauty the way you have. Hold onto it!

Anonymous said...

there are those mary janes again! you really must love them!

greta said...

love the storyline! do you have a link to that 15% off coupon? I missed the Friends & Family sale you told us about earlier, but now after this post I have a craving to head over there this week.

laura said...

Is it sad that, while browsing in the PC Nordstrom today, I saw a swing jacket and thought to myself, "Johanna would love that."

Sigh. I honestly think I know your taste better than I know mine.

Dave said...

You complain about fashion in DC, but, outside of new business pitches, I don't remember the last time I saw a woman wear a dress to the office, let alone a dress that looked like that. Even under a swing jacket. Whatever that is. Women may dress well in LA, but we are far more casual than DC.

just here to watch said...

Dave, most of us don't dress like that in the office, jacket or no jacket. I work at an NGO, and if I or any of my female colleagues showed up to work like that, we'd end up losing legitimacy, not gaining it. I read Jo's site for her writing and the pretty pictures of pretty things I can't afford.

NGO-er said...

My office definitely has a lowkey dress code as well, but I still dress up in high heels, dresses, skirts and occasionally a tailored pantsuit. I understand what you're saying about being less "legitimate" at an NGO if you're dressed up to the nines, but I also can't imagine being in my late 20s/early 30s and heading to work in jeans and sneaks. As long as you're not snobby about it, I doubt anyone in your office is going to fault you for wanting to appear polished.

The dress and hair are gorgeous, J!

brown bride to be said...

it's so funny to look back at pictures of you with longer hair. even though this cut is relatively new, when I see you with the other styles, I think to myself, "*that's* not Johanna!"

cute dress.

Anonymous said...

from where I'm sitting, you already have JenConn's shoulders.

MKO said...

RE: "Am I right, or am I right that when something you know you don't need drops in price from $179.99 to $79.99 (then add an additional 15%-off savings from an in-store coupon) it has a tendency to creep into the maybe-I-actually-do-need-it category?"

My mom says that, at that point, it's kind of your duty and responsibility to take that off the store's hands. So well done.

Anonymous said...

are you and hot redhead lawyer dating? come on, you know I had to ask, especially after the haircut...

Candid Cool said...

ou i love stories with happy endings!!