Conspiracy Theory

PhotoStory Friday

Hosted by Cecily and MamaGeek

Like I’ve said before, every aspect of your life as an ex-pat is revolutionised.  Things you’ve grown up with and taken for granted are suddenly gone and you’re left standing staring at shelves in the supermarket wondering what Miracle Whip and Cool Whip is, and trying not to confuse the two in random conversations.

You troll stores searching for products and names you recognise and even look at labels looking for the company name where you realise Schick and Wilkinson’s Sword are actually one and the same; or noticing that Lenor and Downy are the same company, even though Snuggle has the Orange Rush scent that smells just like Lenor’s Sunshine scent that your Mum uses.

I had retail stores in Glasgow and my hometown that I loved to browse and shop in.  I found my niche and stuck with it.  When I got here, there were only a few clothing places that  I recognised, one being T.J. Maxx — except is called T.K. Maxx over there.  I have no idea why.  And I really wish we had an H&M in Montana, I love that place.  So, it has been hard starting from scratch, shopping in places you have no historical loyalty to and learning where to go and where avoid.

I need help.

If you just said, “we already knew that, that’s nothing new…” shut your dirty mouth!

Before I start, let me just say I love weddings.  I get dazzled by the flowers, decorations, lights, music and the amazing ambiance.  I’m one of those people that totally gets swept up in the moment and enjoys the atmosphere.  And, it’s great to see two people who really love each other making a lifelong commitment of love, companionship and devotion to each other.  Although I have to say, there seems to be an unwritten rule somewhere for brides that says 40% of them have to wrangle bridesmaids or attendants into making them wear something they normally wouldn’t take a second glance at.

And before you start just so you know, I never had any bridesmaids

As happy as I am that my little BIL is getting married in November and that he’s found the love of his life, I can’t get over the skirt I’ll be prancing around in.  Well, me and at the very least, another four of us.  There are more, I just have no idea how many.  Now, I can live with the pattern.  After staring at it for two hours, I can live with it.  What I would have really liked is a wrap-over skirt — they’re easy to make and very flattering.  What we have is a slightly A-line skirt with a heavily elasticated waist with six small pin tucks to make it slightly flouncy.  Couple that with a calf-length hem that is just over an inch too short to be calf length and you have my living nightmare.

I know it’s not my wedding and I don’t get to decide, but still, how many body types do you know that an elasticated waist will flatter?  My friends Stacey and Clinton tell me “none” and “the computer says ‘no’.”

I’m really excited that we all get to pick a black blouse.  It doesn’t matter what it looks like, it just has to be black.  And wouldn’t you know it, I don’t own a black blouse.  The only constraint I have is I want to keep the price tag $50 or under.  So far, I have been unsuccessful in locating an amazing blouse.  Given my duration  here, I will say that I used to have places here that were my ‘go to’ for clothes, and without naming any names, their quality has went down, and their prices up.

So this is where I am hoping you lot will help me out.  Have you seen an amazing blouse that you love?  Do you own said blouse, and per chance, where can I buy it?  Do you hit nearby clothing stores (that I don’t have frequent access to) and have seen a blouse or could look out for one?

Now, this isn’t just a hollow, unrequited request.  Find me a great one that I purchase and I’ll send you a $25 gift card to the store of your choosing…

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22 responses to “Conspiracy Theory

  1. I always look at JCPenneys for basics. They usually have a pretty good selection of things in black or white; I have to wear those two solids when I work at the salon. Also, JCP usually has sales going on, especially on the weekend. How about that? You have one near you, right? (and fyi, I didn’t comment for the chance of a gift card. Just trying to help! 🙂 )

  2. Good luck finding something. I’m not sure of what stores you have near you. If you’re inclined to browse you can always shop via the internet. I think most major chains have web sites (Macy’s, Lord & Taylor, and, of course the already suggested JC Penney’s). However, I’m already on it and if I see anything, I’ll certainly pass it along.

  3. mmmm that is ‘interesting’ fabric. i was a bridesmaid in red before but no elasticated waste.
    What about this:
    http://www.anntaylor.com/catalog/product.jsp?productId=16830&Ns=CATEGORY_SEQ_341&N=1200068&Nty=1&categoryId=152&showAll=Y&defaultColorNameFromCategory=Bright%20Cobalt&defaultSizeTypeFromCategory=Misses
    unless you don’t like your arms? It is mail order too and within budget – let me know on the arms and I can always keep looking….

  4. Oh, good luck! I have nothing in the way of suggestions, but I hope you ROCK that elastic waistband!!!!!

  5. At least you get to pick the top 😉

    I can’t see your pics, but I love the story!

  6. Hmm somthing like this one would end up getting a lot of use – is gorgeous! http://www.kohls.com/kohlsStore/womens/tops/shirtsblouses/PRD~389429/Simply+Vera+Vera+Wang+ChiffonPleated+Top.jsp

    This ones lovely aswell – nice length to cover the elastic! http://www.kohls.com/kohlsStore/womens/tops/shirtsblouses/PRD~358914/apt+9+Striped+Sateen+Blouse.jsp

    Bon chance! Fabric is cute – elastic is evil! I’m sure it’ll look fabby though!

  7. I was thinking what Jenny was thinking! At least you get to pick the top!
    Loved the part of the post about the products as well! They are really more alike than different!

  8. I have a FANTASTIC store down the road. Might take you a few days to get here in Oz though…

    “the computer says ‘no’.” I love you.

  9. Nothing here is under 50 USD anymore when you consider the value of the dollar right now. But hey, on the bright side, I’ll bet you can find clothes that fit you over in the US. I still have to lose another 15 pounds or so until I’ll be able to find that here.

  10. I usually find good things at Chadwicks. I’m a little like you, I don’t have much to choose from on our little Newport Rhode ISLAND. It’s 30 minutes to the nearest Target. So, online ordering, the same as I did in Japan. Here’s one: http://www.chadwicks.com/clothing/BOSTON-DESIGN-STUDIO-RuffledCollar-Shirt.aspx?PfId=112521&DeptId=8391&ProductTypeId=1&PurchaseType=0
    I also like Down East Basics. Here’s the link: https://www.downeastbasics.com/index.asp?PageAction=VIEWCATS&Category=3

    Good luck!

  11. Just come over to my house and go through my closet. Pretty much every top I own is black. Or, I could always run to H&M for you, since we have one at every mall and everything. They do have a great little cardigan that would look pretty good. 🙂

  12. I’m a big fan of Khols. I’ve found some very fashionable and affordable things there (they always have some sort of sale going on). I know they have a website, but I’ve never used it so I can make no promises. I also get a lot of my clothes through Victoria’s Secret. They are more than bras and panties! While they can be pricey sometimes…you can also find good sales. With the seasons changing now, I know there are a lot of pieces on sale. Good luck!

  13. …oops, I meant “Kohls”…but you probably already figured that out…fingers not working today…

  14. Have you tried White House Black Market? They only sell black and white things. If you check their sales you can usually get a deal. And, that skirt? UGH

  15. I’m so glad you played PSF! Now if only I could provide a good suggestion – other than of course internet online shopping.

    And my computer says no to. OY.

  16. Can’t help you on this one but I have to voice opinion on the skirt. No, better I don’t say anything.

    By the way, tell Bryan I will answer his question on my blog today.

  17. UMMMMMM the skirt, yeah it would look way better as a wrap-around!
    I just found a super cute black blouse in a catalogue {but you look skinnier than me and it was purchased in a big and tall they sell from size 12 up} I live in the middle of no where eastern MT and it’s a good 3 hour drive to a mall. Good luck

  18. Um, yes, I, would, freak.

  19. Oh. dear. lord.
    That skirt.

    I have no words.

    But I do have a blouse. It’s only $19.50! Too bad it’s not calf length to hide the skirt:
    http://www.bodyc.com/BodyCentral/womens.fashion/itemdetl.html?lvl1=Tops&lvl2=Long%20Sleeve%20Tops&item=3344

    Newport News is always worth a look:
    http://www.newport-news.com/shop/thumbnail.aspx?womens-shirts-blouses&gp_coll_id=9&gp_cat_id=1649&nav_cat_id=1675&category_id=7658

    And here is one of my all time favorite clothing sites. Lots of vintage pieces (navigate using size, period or style on the top bar), and unique looks!
    http://www.unique-vintage.com/index.php

  20. Pingback: Shirt Tales «

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