I’m In Chains: The Dress That Has Come to Represent My Early-Mid 20s


Dress: Lazy Oaf via Nasty Gal. Faux fur vest: gift from my brother. Necklace, ring, bracelet: gifts from family and friends. Earrings: vintage. Tights: DKNY. Shoes: Ann Marino (these are ANCIENT).

The dress from the front.

The dress from the front.

The dress from the back.

When I first saw this dress, my first thought was, “OOOOOooooOOOOOoooo. So many colors…” Like most days, I was checking out Nasty Gal (don’t worry — I’m almost always just checking) when I stumbled across this funky number by Lazy Oaf. The colors, the bold chain print, and the form-fitting, figure-flattering, flirty, feminine cut were enough for me to click on the picture for a close-up. What did me in, however, were the “Lazy” tags that were part of the print. This dress reminded me of what life had been for me up until now: I had been chained by what many had perceived to be laziness, but what I knew was actually fear of failing miserably.

I recently came to the realization that anxiety over the prospect of failure is not my only problem, nor is it my biggest problem. My greatest issue is fear of commitment. I’ve come to understand that, like many people, I am not a talentless loser who fails at everything. Rather, I actually have many talents and, if anything, I’m overwhelmed by opportunities for tremendous success. However, being that I’m afraid of commitment, I’ve shied away from many opportunities for success precisely because of the presumed commitment to continued good work in that particular area in which I would have realized success. In a nutshell, if I decide to pursue taxation and I become successful in that field, I am afraid that I will be locked into that field forever without any way out.

You must understand that this realization is a huge step forward for me. Not only have I accepted my real shortcomings, but I’m beginning to accept my talents. Let me tell you, it’s been extremely liberating and empowering to finally look at myself in the mirror and see the reflection of someone capable, rather than someone who constantly fails. I’m finally freeing my true self from my old, toxic self-loathing self. I’m sawing off the rusted chains and shackles that have kept me from soaring into space! Needless to say, I bought the dress, and am thrilled that I did.

Anyway, back to the dress. Now I know what some of you might be thinking: “Umm, hello? Is anybody home? It’s made of polyester, and you’re not supposed to buy anything unless you need it.” Well, smartypants, I have news for you all; I did need to buy this dress. I was in need of one club/lounge dress at the time of purchase because I didn’t own ANY.


Anyway, I wore this last Saturday night under the faux fur vest my brother gave me. I wore it with some of my mom’s jewelry from the 70s: a colorful silver scarab on a silver chain, and the “shield” ring with her first initial on it. I also wore a silver coil bracelet with brass balls threaded through it that was given to me by a family friend eons ago (pictured above).



vegetable picnic earrings

I mustn’t forget my favorite earrings! I had purchased these a few years ago at some thrift store on Orchard St. I had to haggle with this loaf of a man with Jerry curls for about ten minutes before reaching an acceptable price, but I got them. I love their whimsical design; the flourishes and the dangling “carrots” are so magical!

I think that I looked great. I did, however, make one major rookie mistake: I layered a form-fitting polyester dress over a Spanx slip over tights. My dress was riding up my thighs for most of the night. Also, my shoes kept on slipping off of my heels as I walked. Sigh. It turns out that wearing this dress is like wearing the chains that were keeping me from living my life until recently!

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Size J, Queen of the Tundra

One of my brothers had bought me a black faux fur vest for Christmas. Yesterday it arrived in the mail, much to my heart’s content. I was so excited that I did a few karate chops (or what people who don’t practice martial arts believe to be karate chops) and then planned an outfit around my fake beast.

All the kids at work LOVED this thing (I work at a supplemental education center). I can’t tell you how many times my students “pet” me. I was getting hugs every ten minutes — I have never felt so loved in my life!


Faux fur vest: gift from my brother. Shirt: H&M. Necklace: Forever 21. Pants: Adriano Goldschmied. Watch: Movado. Bracelet: gift from a family friend.

As you can see, I’m of the opinion that a black-on-black color scheme isn’t limited to Bentleys and Phantoms. I chose to wear my black vest with a black top, black pants, and black boots because black almost always look great with black.

Also, a black fur vest with an iridescent shard necklace looks so ridiculously cool together; I feel like a warrior ice queen who’s about to ride a silky black horse across a frost-covered plain into battle. I bought the necklace at Forever 21 last night for $9 and change. I couldn’t resist!



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There’s a party on my fingers! Yay!

This week I forced my brothers to watch Fudoh: The New Generation with me (I feel like there’s probably a lesson in there about compromise, but…), my brother flew back to London on Thursday night (the most emotional part of the week), and I went to this awesome exhibit at MoMAI’ve also been trying to get my posterior in gearior regarding my next Fashion Challenge segment (I’m trying to post one/month and I’m already behind schedule), but I can’t find certain garments in the Polyvore archives or when I Google them, which is something I find unacceptable in 2013. Seriously, why is it so difficult to find the leather Rick Owens sporran I spotted in Philadelphia two years ago at a store that no longer exists?!

I knew that I was going to be doing my fair share of socializing this week, so I needed to be prepared for whatever excitement and mischief was to come my way. Enter the PARTY MANICURE.


Despite the fact that all of the manicure photos I’ve posted are fun, glittery, trendy, and two-toned, I generally stick to more solid and uniform manicures (which is also one of the reasons why I’ve only written about four of my manicures so far). What can I say? I was in the mood for confetti. Plus, this manicure matches these crazy pants which I’ve had for MONTHS and finally wore for the first time on Saturday night. 🙂



I absolutely love the print of these pants; however, there is this brown paint splatter motif that makes them kind of look….. soiled. Gross, huh? Well, I’m all for fugly chic and anything kind of transgressive.

Here’s to my gross-looking, but awesome printed pants and the party on my fingers!

Base coat: White Hot by Sephora by OPI (see the tip below)
Top coat: Twinkle by Milani
Pants: H&M

TIP: Use white nail polish as a base coat for solid, colorful manicures. Cover those white digits with a neon color (Dream On by Sinful Colours is my personal favorite) and watch that color really pop.

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