Thursday, May 1, 2014

Colorado Springs in a Long Black Skirt at Pikes Peak


I didn't realize there was going to be a fancy dress dinner, make that two, at Pikes Peak Writers Conference until a few days before I left. Accordingly, I simply threw into my bag that skirt. You know that skirt? It's the one that always looks good. It's body con yet flows. I can wear with flats or heals. It's stretchy enough to be forgiving on the bad days. It always makes me feel elegant. It packs without wrinkling.

Every girl should have that skirt.


I don't wear mine all that often because it is overly elegant and a little Goth. But it is still that skirt, and frankly, sometimes it is nice not to have to think too much about an outfit. I can relax into know the lower half of my body is entirely taken care of. I'm wearing it with two tunic-cut shirts because I intended to wear a corset underneath. However, the altitude at Colorado Springs got to me so I elected not to corset on the first night with the burgundy. I am wearing it on the second night though. (Can you see the difference?) I got my that skirt very cheap off Haight Street because the waistband needed repairs (easy ones, as it turned out).

To make it steampunky for the Friday Night theme I paired it with a BCBG silk burgundy wrap shirt, cashmere mitties with black beading, a little steampunk hat with a big feather out the back (not visible), and a beautiful jewelry set (earrings and necklace) with octopus detail made for me by a fan.

Gail & Kristin

Saturday night I wore it with a lace blouse ($20 from T.J.Max), my new multi-strand pearl necklace, my favorite vintage lace evening hat, and long back gloves. Here is an image that inspired this look...

1904 Gimbel Brothers day dress ca. 1904  From the Philadelphia Museum of Art

Both times I donned this skirt I paired it with flats. I recently discovered footrollupz.


I bought these black ones and I am thinking about ordering them in other colors as well. They have enough padding, which my previous roll flats didn't (solemates). Not enough to walk for miles, but enough to give me a break from heels as I wander back to the hotel after a bar con. Plus: what's the thing Gail loves more than anything these days? They pack super small and light.

numanbaba Tumblr  The End of the Evening, William Breakspeare

"In dressing for a hotel dinner, it is not well to adopt a full evening costume, and to appear as if attired for a ball; for instance, with a coloured velvet gown; or one of a splendid brocade; or a transparent gauze material over a satin; or with short sleeves and bare neck in cold weather; or with flowers or jewels in the hair. Such costumes should be reserved for evening parties."
~ The Ladies' Guide to True Politeness and Perfect Manners or, Miss Leslie's Behaviour Book by Eliza Leslie (American 1864)


Retro Rack is also on facebook where I post additional images and fashion thoughts.

1 comment:

  1. I don't think I would have noticed the difference in the first two pictures since I don't tend to make a habit of staring at silhouettes in non-costume pieces but... Yes. The Rack is... shall we say "controlled", in the corset? Like the corset says "this bit goes here and this bit goes here and there they shall stay FOR ALL ETERNITY. In your FACE, Physics." I can't wait to get some boning into my corset and see if it works as good as I think it will.

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