Playing Spider Elliott [pt 2]

In an earlier post, I detailed how Ms Fizz let me weigh in on what she should wear to some of her 20th high school reunion events. Like the kickoff at the Pig-n-Poke’s stand-in.

When I read Judith Krantz’s Scruples at a very young and completely inappropriate age, I felt for poor Maggie MacGregor (née Shirley Silverstein), who was neither tall nor blonde nor leggy yet purchased clothing suited to tall leggy blondes.

Ms Fizz and I suffer from that same affliction, but we know fiscally and otherwise it makes sense to remember Maggie’s fateful lesson:

Fashion exists only to be adapted to you. The Maggie-ness of Maggie is what you should be looking for everytime you buy something. Ask yourself, ‘Am I still here or have I vanished?'”

With my pal feeling her casual reunionwear now captured the Fizz-ness of Fizz, we had one last task: doll her up for the swamp soirée. Because despite the insanity of an outdoor setting (in the South, in AUGUST), both of us felt it was a teeth in/shoes on event. Given that everyone will be very firmly in their 30s and all.

Up for evaluation was a tags-on black cotton voile dress that was quite flattering to Fizz’s stature and measurements, kind enough to her coloring, and certainly suitable for the occasion. We could find nothing wrong with its come-for-cocktails, stay-for-supper vibe. Except…even with kicky jewelry it was SAFE. And if Fizz wanted to let her inner frothiness out to play, who would be fool enough to dissuade her?

Rhetorical question answered, off we went. Since Fizz’s exhaustive search of National Names had yielded only the black dress, we focused on smaller stores. Now, I’m not saying we were CONSCIOUSLY thinking of another fictional Maggie–Ms Maggie Prescott–when we were out and about. But when a woman’s trying to “banish the black! burn the blue! and bury the beige!” she may find herself following the rest of MP’s advice:

Think pink / Think pink when you shop for summer clothes

Think pink / Think pink if you want that quelque chose

Funny Face’s charms aside, I fought wearing pink for ages. Until I realized a $10 T shirt in the right shade(s) of pink/coral works better than Botox. So now I’m (conditionally) pro-pink, dammit. But awwwwww, who can hate on this?

this pink can HANDLE the bling!

Or this striking 50s confection?

Vintage 50s poppies for sale(!) at

Vintage 50s poppies for sale at

[Aside from possibly stylist Kendall Farr, who recommends women 40+ seek out abstract and art-inspired blooms but also advises avoiding anything that looks too literally retro in print and shape. Now of course Fizz doesn’t give a hoot about “style over 40” suggestions as she is in her LATE 30s. And Lily doesn’t give a hoot about them despite being almost 70. But I like to think that Farr, whose books I admire, would be blinded by love for this item and deem it perfection for any age.]

In the end, Ms Fizz ended up with a descendant of the above…from the same place that made my customized dress…and lowish-key accessories:

Ms Fizzs new dress, more fabulous on her as she fills out the top!

Ms Fizz's new dress, more fabulous on her as she fills it out! (ignore the necklace)

Fizzs new earrings incorporate vintage Swarovski crystal

Fizz's new earrings incorporate vintage Swarovski crystal (and flash a ton of colors)

FIzzs last purchase: pale pink leg-extender shoes

FIzz's last purchase: pale pink patent "leg-extender" shoes

So what did it take to get Fizz to foam? An off-the-dummy garment expertly changed to work with her physique; the proper undergarments for smoothing and lifting; earrings that flirt with the past while keeping an eye on the present; and leg-extender shoes that blend with her skin tone and help contour her calves.

She’ll be a vision of succulent splendor once she hits town. May she party like it’s 1989.

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