Turn Casual Friday Up To Eleven

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

photo credit: Joshua Franzos

You've heard the aphorism, "If you don't like the scenery, change your view"? What about, "If you don't like what's being said, change the conversation"? Or maybe, "If you don't like how the table is set, turn over the table"? I'm pretty angsty these days, so I prefer the last one.

photo credit: Joshua Franzos

If you tuned in to my last blog post (here) you'll know that I've been dealing with some health issues. I'm only very slowly getting back to my "regularly scheduled programming." Actually that's not true. Nothing is regularly scheduled anymore. I liked my routines. I liked getting up at 5:15am and cycling or running or picking up weights until I was good and mentally chill for the rest of the day. I liked sitting down to write during lunch. I liked having a drink, or few, with my husband and some friends at the end of the day, and then writing some more if I was able. This is what my muse, the writing inspiration and task master in my head, wanted. He's looks a bit like Raoul Duke, but has a tendency to become a Pterodactyl clawing around the inside of my skull if I don't get the exercise, writing, socializing, and drinking done. Because this schedule worked for him, it worked for me. Turns out, it's not working for me and I need to take better care of myself. Eat more healthy fats. Do womanly well being things. I'm learning, but honestly, I'd much rather take an upper-cut to the chin than do oogy-woogy, crunchy things that reek of "balance your hormones, balance your life" and "nurture your stomach, nurture your soul." 

This stuff, it's not for me. I'd much rather run with the wolves.

"That's just too damn bad," says the Universe, "listen, if you want to be healthy enough to finish your first draft before October, you're going to have to be more tender. Oh, and start taking those fish oil and evening primrose capsules!"

 Fine! I shout, like an angry teenager, slamming the front door for extra emphasis. Stupid Universe. My muse flaps around inside my skull like a rabid bat. He shrieks in agreement. Stupid Universe.

photo credit: Joshua Franzos

photo credit: Joshua Franzos

photo credit: Joshua Franzos

As I very, very slowly inched around my neighborhood on my daily very, very slow constitutional with a pissed muse and angry why me? thoughts skittering around in my head, I kept walking by the J.Crew store on Walnut Street. Before long, I became haunted by a very pink, very floral shirt in the window display. It stuck out. It was SO pink. After about two weeks of staring at it from the outside in, I went inside to see what it was about. I haven't purchased any new "work shirts" in a few years, so, what was the harm? The sales associate informed me that the shirt was sold out, except for the one in the window display. Oh well, I shrugged and started walking out, but, as you know, I walk very, very slowly these days. The sales associate pulled it off the mannequin and handed it to me before I made it to the door. What was the harm? I tried it on. It fit and I liked it. I liked a pink, floral shirt and I bought it.

photo credit: Joshua Franzos

photo credit: Joshua Franzos
photo credit: Joshua Franzos

Since I started writing, it has made me a little singularly focused. On words. On writing. On when l'll get to write next. I lost sight on how creative I could be in other avenues that I used to enjoy. I'm thinking food and fashion specifically. Even further specifically, I forgot how much I enjoy the challenge of mixing prints. Since I got this shirt with work in mind, I came up with a punchy casual Friday look and it went over very well. My colleagues were very enthusiastic. (I have a tendency to get into what I call my "Mr. Roger's rut" in the winter...button down shirt, cardigan, trousers, repeat. I shake out of it every spring). "Just trying to look better than I feel, " I quipped at the water cooler.

 I mixed the shirt with pinstripe denim, a leopard print belt, metallic gold flats ( no heels right now), and a Marsala-colored snakeskin clutch (I'm not supposed to carry heavy bags right now). It seems like a lot of different things that miraculously work together, but I have a few tips to share on the subject of mixing prints that I'd like to share with you now and in other posts this spring and summer. My first tip is: leopard and metallics should be used like neutrals (you know, black, white, tan), and they always look great when paired with pop-y colors like fluorescents...like hot pink. 

photo credit: Joshua Franzos

I never wear pink. I never wear floral anything. I never talk about clothes on my blog. Now I am.  A wolf in pink clothing.

I guess if even cowgirls get the blues, even tomboys can get the pinks...my way of wearing rose-colored glasses, I guess. 

So with that, consider the table overturned... I used my jedi mind powers since I can't physically overturn it myself right now. But I will again, soon as I'm done with physical therapy.

(Take that universe).

photo credit: Joshua Franzos

What I wore:
shirt: J.Crew
necklace: vintage Goldette, my mother's
watch: vintage Omega, my mother's
pants: Anna Sui original sample, Spring 2002
belt: past season Express
shoes: past season J.Crew
bag: vintage 
Sunnies: vintage Christian Dior

Do you ever use fashion or colors to change your mindset or alter your mood? Tell me all about it in the comments below!

Your Bosom Friend in Pittsburgh,


  1. I'm SO pleased to hear that you're feeling a little better,Meryl! This outfit is great, all the elements work together in perfection and I couldn't agree more that leopard print and metallic can be treated as a neutral. My clothes tend to match my mood, I don't think I've ever used them to change my mindset but I like the idea. I'm back from a four flight journey from Africa to the USA and am feeling somewhat flat, so today is the day to see if I can change how I feel by donning a cheerful outfit! xx

  2. How did the cheerful outfit experiment go?


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