I had the perfect dress once. It was forest green, a supple jersey material, which embraced me in its warmth. The neck was scalloped, and it was mid-calf in length, with sleeves that stopped six inches above my wrists. It flowed in a smooth sweep from my shoulders, with nothing to interrupt the purity of its line, and it hugged me like a lover. The skirt was full. If I picked it up by the hems, I could lift my arms up above my shoulders. If I twirled around and sank down on the carpet, it spread around me like the petals of a flower.
I paired it with a triangular, peach-colored shawl I had crocheted, and I wore it with the point aiming down my right arm and the ends crossed over my left shoulder. On my feet I wore little black suede pumps, all rounded toes and high heels; they looked as if they’d been made for me. A matching purse with a gold chain shoulder strap and two pairs of gold earrings completed my ensemble. I had brushed my hair until it shone like spun gold, and with lips painted coral and sexy sunglasses perched on my nose, I was ready to face the world.
This may sound like a lot of work, but when I’m getting ready to go out, my costume du jour is an important part of the armor I wear to protect myself. At any rate, the reward for all my efforts came later that afternoon. I was strolling along, when I met a couple walking arm-in-arm. We smiled and nodded and passed each other by, and then the man called out to me, “Oh, miss, my wife and I love your look!”. I thanked them and walked on, day completely made. That was at least 15 years ago, and I’ve no memory of what happened to the dress, but even now, when I remember those words, I smile.
(Originally published December 12, 2009, on seeing a young lady with a very put-together look.)