Sunday, June 20, 2010

Roses and thorns: clothing

Things I love right now:

(Image, and proof that I really cannot wear junior sizes any more, courtesy of Kohl's.)

Wide-leg gaucho pants in a nice, flowy fabric

Had I caught on to the beauty of these a couple of years ago, when they were more popular, I would have/should have stocked my wardrobe with them. They are. So. Comfortable. But because I am generally at least a year late on most trends, I am now unable to find a good pair, in my size, in black or a nice grey. But the brown ones I recently found, I love them so; I plan to wear them to death and then weep over their grave.

(I may have found a possibility in black from a tango clothier, but I'll need to check my measurements. I'm also thinking about asking my seamstress to convert a skirt that I haven't been wearing the way I should.)

(Also courtesy of Kohl's.)

Maxi dresses

I wouldn't wear them for tango, of course--too long, I'd step all over the hem, and besides, you couldn't see my feet, which, we all know, is the most interesting part to watch, in social tango! But I'd wear them pretty much the rest of my life outside of tango, if I could. The only key seems to be making sure the cut of the waist and the pattern don't say "maternity wear" instead of "Bohemian chic." But otherwise--breezy, effortlessly pretty... Next best thing to wearing pajamas, and you don't even have to shave your legs!

Maxi Gluzman

(But let's not get started on all the lovely tangueros I adore...)

Things I hate, now and always:

(From Sak's Fifth Avenue)

Dropped-crotch harem pants

Maybe these have their place in a belly dance routine, or an ethnic costume; I wouldn't dream of knocking that. But for the rest of us, no matter how hot a girl may be,* these are never going to do anything but make her look like she's wearing a saggy diaper.

Why is anyone still offering these, yet beautiful gauchos for the fuller-figured lady are almost nowhere to be found? Oh, ye fickle and unfeeling gods of fashion!

Jangly anklets

Actually, I'm a bit of a fan of these in my non-tango life. So gypsy-flavored! Rings on her fingers, and bells on her toes! But at the milonga or practica, they immediately become unbearably obnoxious. I am busy trying to hear the rhythm and concentrate on my partner; I do not need to hear every movement of another woman's feet when she is wearing this kind of jewelry.

And special mention, bellydancer hip scarves with coins on the hem! So far I've only encountered this at a Halloween milonga; dressing in full bellydancer regalia is a bit much, even for the tanguera with a more pronounced exhibitionist streak than most (which is saying something; I think we all have a little attention-seeking side, or we wouldn't have started tango in the first place). But I tell you, in that context, it was the most irritating costume I have ever encountered. Imagine my disgust when it won "best female costume" that night.

* And I have only seen these affected by (Caucasian) beanpole fashionistas. I suspect that bigger girls are used to having to be more careful about what they put on their bodies, whereas a lot of fashions these days (bubble-hem dresses with big pockets at the hips? really? because your average bubble-hem dress isn't sufficiently godawful on most grown people?) seem to be about how you're supposed to be so cute you can wear any unflattering thing and still look good.**

** I think I read something like this phrase recently, in re. empire-waist dresses for plus-sized ladies, but I can't remember where. I'd credit if I could!

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