You. Need. This.

Do you have a black eyelet dress?

Like, say, this one, from Holly at ?

I don't set myself up to be a "dictator of taste", and I don't think I've ever done one of those "Ten Items Every Woman Must Own" lists, but if I did, a black eyelet dress would be on the list. ("Trench coat" would not be on the list. Has there ever been a fashmag printed that didn't tell you to run out and buy a trench coat? "Trench coat" is like the "free square" in Bingo.)

This is why you need a black eyelet dress: they're perfect. (Okay, okay, I'll elaborate.) Black eyelet has a natural tension between sweet and sultry, between looking (and staying) cool and looking hot. It's easy to dress up or down, and easier still to accessorize. (Black pique is *almost* as good, it's just slightly more casual.)

I've seen black eyelet like this (elegant, restrained) and black eyelet wild (in some 1980s fashion spread — I wish I'd kept it — a black eyelet A-line dress with eyepopping neon bra & briefs under it, possibly a swimsuit, but hey, it was the 1980s, everything was neon). 

I've got one black eyelet dress that I've worn nearly to rags, so I'm definitely planning a black broderie anglaise dress for this summer, lined in black batiste (or unlined, if I choose to go the neon underthings route … UNLIKELY). 

This one is 38/28/40, and trust me, you will wear it until it gets rusty and falls off you. 

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quick housekeeping note

Hi folks, you might notice a little "rewards" tab on the side of the page — I'm helping a friend test out a new blog service, so any and all feedback welcome. (That's what happens out here in the Silicon Valley, everything's on the bleeeeeding edge.)

While you're here, enjoy this 1970's pattern:

[from , on eBay]

Just looking at this pattern gets me so earwormed with "". But I kinda want to make the sailor collar version … 

I just picked up

… this fabric, at the sale (Suzette! Sorry I missed you! Leah! Nice running into you!): 

Yep, polished cotton, with polka-dots the way the good Lord intended them to be: fist-sized.

What should I make? Did I mention that there was SEVEN and SEVEN-EIGHTHS yards of it? Which I bought for $23? (Some days I'm so darn lucky that it's a wonder I'm not killed by angry bystanders on the spot.)

I got some other stuff too, including as much vintage bias tape as I could carry. Pics to come. 

I'm So Glad That You're Mine (Almost)

Thanks to Janet at , this pattern is now mine. Or close to mine, as soon as the USPS delivers it into my waiting arms. I believe the only appropriate reaction is "oh boy!"

There are pockets, people. And look at that yoke. And I'm going to make it in just that buttercup yellow with a teal suede belt and teal shoes (…. um, someday).

I love a dress that has a narrow front and gathers in the center back of the skirt. It always feels like a train to wear — you just sweep into rooms (if you're so inclined).

Check out the that these two are exchanging. What happens next? My guess is: what always happens next when two people spend a little too long looking at each other.

Best New Project, History of Fashion Division

Why is this woman smiling? (Well, because her dress is kick-ass, that's one reason.) The other is because she probably (like me) just found out about this from of . (Thanks Kat G for the link!)

Pham is collecting images of women of color, who, as she points out, are almost completely overlooked and left out of fashion histories. 

Her blog is fantastic and the pictures are wonderful. Highly recommended (and send her your pictures)!

Slow Art, Nice Clothes.


[Image of the Met's Anglomania exhibit BY-NC-ND 2.0 by ]

Mina sent me a list of fashion museums around the world from — I've repurposed it into a wiki page over at the . Know of others? Please add them!

Which reminds me, do you all know about ? It's April 16 this year.

Slow Art Day was started to invite novices – and experts – to experience the art of looking at art slowly.

It's a very simple process. Volunteer hosts (not necessarily experts) invite people to come to a local museum and view a small number of works of art for 5 to 10 minutes each. Then everyone meets for lunch at a nearby cafe to talk about their experience. And all this happens the same day around the world.

In San Francisco, my son and I will be doing Slow Art Day at the Cartoon Art Museum — come !

If there's a fashion museum by you, why not  in your city? 

A is for Awesome

Many thanks to Caroline who tipped me off that was an A-Z of alphabet prints and bright colors. (Also, some .)

If I can't get some of this fabric, it won't be for lack of trying. (Also, can I pull off high-heeled orange sneakers?)

Thanks, Domenico and Stefano! Choose Life!