Mae West said, “I’d rather be looked over than overlooked.” I’d agree with that.
So, I’m trying to come up with an appropriate title for this entry:
Judging a girl by her hat…
A hat of many styles…
A hat by any other name…
Perhaps I should explain. I have to come clean: I love hats. I don’t normally wear them ’round town because it’s too warm for Raleigh unless I’m working out. Plus, I get major hat hair due to my painfully thin hair and oily scalp. All one has to do is breathe on my hair to get a reactionary… oh, never mind. I digress.But for the love of Jackie O, I love hats. My old high school chums would agree.
Several years ago, I bought a inexpensive, chic, alabaster, albeit synthetic hat to wear for skiing. Skiing was a disaster: sprained my knee but got looked after by a cute doctor. This chic hat I have dubbed, “Princess Diana hat,” I believe, possesses a certain charm. Similar to Jim Carey in “The Mask” but oh-so-much prettier. My Princess Di hat is a great looking hat and I must say, looks great on me. (insert smug smile) From the looks and reactions I got in Europe, other’s thought so, too.
Usually, my attempt to remain modest is pretty successful. Once in a while, however, I must speak out when something so provocative becomes patently obvious and in this case, I’m happy with the way my jaw bone relates to hat. Please don’t call me conceited. I swear, it’s the artist and designer within that is always working ’round the clock to make the world a better designed place to live. This includes being brutally honest with myself like, “sure my hips are widening, but how do we play them up or down?” Or, this house is getting cluttered, how do we eliminate the clutter, or better yet, hide it since we’ll never really be rid of it?
Disguises and enhancements: that’s my design key to life.
I was taught to approach one’s wardrobe by a simple mantra: recognize the fads vs fashion. Make the staples in your wardrobe workhorses so that one can play with accessories to move effortlessly like a chameleon through-out the day. Choosing timeless classics allows one flexibility no matter where you find yourself.
New Year’s Eve in Edinburgh was due to be a clear but chilly night, so I donned my Princess Di hat. Mind you, I had been wearing this hat all week and but heard not a word, until tonight. My Princess Di hat is not currently ‘in season,’ but I didn’t care. I love the hat and it’s a classic style. While waiting for the fireworks display to begin at the castle, we’d make impromptu friends. One gent on the street came up and complimented me on my hat. Took me by surprise, but made me feel cozy inside, although Andrew was doing a fine job of that, he always does.
To wish you were dressed differently is to waste the moment at hand.
Moments become minutes, minutes become hours and suddenly, you’ve wasted the evening pining over what you could never be: yourself. If you’re confident in what your wearing, then you will glow.
I’m glowing blue.
Case in point: Andrew scored tickets to the newly created event “Hoog” in Edinburgh during Hogmanay. ‘Hoog’ was created because the last 2 years, the New Year’s Eve street party was cancelled, due to small issues like 80mph winds. While many of the women were dressed to kill, I was dressed to keep my *ss from freezing off. When we walked in amidst the sea of glorious tartan, the women were dressed in scantily clad chiffon dresses; I got the chills just looking at all the bare skin. We were dressed well, but humbly. My basic ensemble consisted of black dress jeans, a black v-neck sweater, and my oh-so-comfortable brown sporto heels -basic and boring from a partier’s perspective. I pinned my Edward Gorey skating cat (often found on my hat) onto my newly purchased tartan wool scarf worn like a Scottish Bridal sash across the shoulder, dangling from my ears were my amethyst drop earrings, and proudly baking my head was my Princess Diana Hat. I didn’t dare take off the hat because of the horrendous hat hair.
Having never attended this gala before and not being included in the apparel memo, we managed to make light and did our best to ‘blend in.’ Heh, who am I kidding, I stuck out –I was the only chick wearing pants. Moving from room to raucous room, we’d find the music we liked the best and danced. We loved the blue room where I took a few minutes of footage of dancing tartans (to be uploaded soon). In this room, we suddenly were tossed into a ring of 6 and dancing the Ceilidh (pro. kay-lee). The music so loud I kept telling our new partners that I had no idea what a Ceilidh is –I’ve never seen it before. I can usually muddle my way thru and when I actually know what I’m doing, most have said I’m a good dancer, but I swear these traditional community dances were much like a contact sport.
To wish you were someone else is to waste the person you are.
Once this band finished, we all moved across the gallery like cattle to the next hall to take out the next unassuming batch of innocents. We were dodging bodies to find an open space and at that moment, a tall young Scot (think a tall Hugh Grant) in full regalia, sporran and all, stopped entertaining the group of ladies he was surrounded by. We stood face to face, the women parted like a horseshoe to allow me space and the Scot bent down and whispered in my ear with his English accent,“I-love-your-hat.” Grabbing my left hand, he kissed it and said something like, “You-look-maaag-nif-icent.” From a romantic’s point of view, the moment had it all. I just chuckled and thanked him.
Andrew and I both giggled, then moved into the room and danced until we were kicked out; we were just a couple of happy-go-lucky Hobbits at home in the shire.
Lesson to be learned? To thine own self be true. If you love it and you know it looks good on you, by all means wear it. Wear it proudly. You might just get kissed in front of all the other girls.