Hi to all my Gal Pals,
Spring is finally here! It is a time when I feel like we are all starting over with a fresh outlook on life and hope is in the air then I remember I have to put on a bathing suit in two months and my attitude on life changes. I know exactly how I am going to look in that bathing suit of mine and it isn’t going to be a pretty sight. Every once in awhile I look at my high school yearbook with a picture of me looking so slim in my two piece bathing suit as the president of the synchronized swimming club and I think “WHAT HAPPENED TO YOU?!!” We should all thank Kim Kardashian (never thought those words would come out of my mouth) for making big butts fashionable. However, no one is out there making “the big belly” fashionable and that is the thought I am stuck with as I envision myself at the beach. I really was born in the wrong era! During the Renaissance, peaking in the 1500’s, having a lot of body weight was considered visually appealing. It was considered not only beautiful but natural to look physically substantial. If you were heavy set it told people you had enough money to keep yourself well fed whereas being skinny was associated with being poor and of the peasant class therefore less attractive. With my luck I would have been skinny during the Renaissance. Oh well, I can always feel a little better by remembering one of my favorite poster sayings “The more you weigh, the harder you are to kidnap. Stay safe, eat cake!”
So you are probably dying to know what the “wearing thing” is. It is the definition of the kimono. I am not talking about the robe you might wear in the morning but the kimono jacket that you can wear anywhere. There is a plus size rapper called Lizzo and even though I do not like her music I agree with her thoughts about kimonos. She stated that “I got my first kimono from Lane Bryant in high school and thought ‘This is amazing, I can wear it with anything’.” Kimonos are loose fitting garments that have wide sleeves. The modern day kimono jackets can be worn with anything. They can be worn with a dress, slacks and even jeans. They can be long or short and are for the young or old (Anthropologie has some cute ones for the hip younger adults). I love them because they are loose fitting so they drape across my body and hide all my past glutenous partakings.
I always like to include a picture of something from my landscape that fits into my blog theme. Today the concept is things that “drape” and what better way to show you how lovely that looks in the landscape than to show you my favorite hanging plant.
I typically arrange my own hanging containers and they all contain plants that hang down creating a draping affect (as does the kimono) but this one I bought at the Joliet Jr. College plant sale. If all goes as scheduled it will start on April 29th and will continue until all the plants are sold. They have 3 large greenhouses and a massive amount of hanging plants hanging from hooks up above. The first day of the sale people are standing in line outside of the greenhouses because they can only let a certain number of people in at a time. This is because they have rolling benches which is great because they can offer rows and rows of plants but only one row on each side of each greenhouse is available to walk down at any given time. Anyway, this basket is unusual because it contains a begonia that likes sun (at my house it gets late afternoon shade but sits in the sun most of the day). The red flowers of the begonias are above the little white flowers of the bacopas. I have had this container every year for the past few summers and people have asked me if the plants are real. I love the decorative hook it hangs on. The butterflies are welded onto the hook and the plant basket sits in the middle of two perpendicular hearts.
When you go to New Orleans, your eye is drawn to the plants draping over the balconies. Also eye catching is the draping effect of the kimono jacket. I have kimono jackets of various lengths so I can tell you that no matter how tall or short you are there is a kimono that will look good on you. So let’s get started.
Before I describe the outfit let me explain why I have the silhouettes hanging behind me. My friend Ruth wanted to know how I store all my jewelry so this week I will tell you how I store 190 pairs of earrings. The silhouettes together have 78 pockets and my earrings are organized according to size and color with multiple pairs in most pockets. I also have my fine jewelry and the earrings that are part of a set in boxes on my dresser. Next time I will flip the silhouettes over and show you how I store some of my 16 inch necklaces.
I love this kimono jacket. You can’t really see the detail work in this picture so I will do my best to describe it. The background is a marbleized pattern of moss green, chartreuse and yellow gold. There is an abstract, cobalt blue leaf pattern throughout and random areas of mint and fern green beading in the same pattern as the abstract leaves. What I love the most are the large pockets. Underneath I am wearing a yellow gold top with cap sleeves and I paired it with a pair of cobalt blue jeans. This outfit makes me think of Indonesia so I pair it with large, brassy gold bracelets, a pair of gold filigree, dangling earrings and a gold filigree necklace. I am wearing a pair of tan sandals with two inch heels.
I don’t know why but this outfit makes me think of Audrey Hepburn, maybe it is the narrow cut of the black pants with the black flats. This kimono jacket has slits up the side and when you walk it just flows. It has a beautiful pattern of pearl and taupe colored flowers with a pearl and taupe filigree pattern around the hem. Underneath I am wearing a long swing style, sleeveless, black top. It has kind of an artsy flair so I am wearing large, ivory shell earrings, an ivory cord bracelet with gold beads and an ivory colored watch. The dragonfly necklace is two tone silver and gold.
This is a shorter kimono jacket that I have paired with slacks but I have worn it with my little black dress to weddings. The front of the jacket has two tones of yellow while the back is gray and black. Because the jacket is so sheer, a top with sleeves just doesn’t look good so I am wearing a sleeveless black top underneath. The scarf around my neck came with the kimono jacket and it is made of the same material. My 1 inch heels have a cute little bow on them to go along with the feminine look of the outfit. I have a picture of the necklace below because you really need to see the beautiful details. I have also paired the outfit with gold and black earrings, watch and bracelet.
The reason I wanted to take a picture of this necklace is because you couldn’t see the lovely black and yellow stone in the previous picture. It is surrounded by metals of silver and gold with an antique gold flower attached to the stone. It hangs from an 18 inch, herringbone gold necklace.
Well that is it for now. The push is on to get my house ready so I can list it in May. I have lost a few pounds because I am running up and down the basement stairs. I have also lost those pounds for another reason. Many of you will be able to relate to my current situation. For the last couple of years I have not been able to breath out of my nose when I go to bed so I breath out of my mouth. Not only do I end up with dry mouth but I don’t sleep well. I went to the ENT who gave me a nose spray but this didn’t help. To make a long story short, it turns out that my nose problem is due to sugar. It took me two years to figure this out. People who know me well know that I have a lot of food sensitivities that I never had in my 20’s and 30’s. In November I stopped eating Doritos and other chips I love. Recently I decided I should decrease the amount of sugar I eat as well and I began to realize that I was breathing better on most nights. So, between getting the house ready, getting the yard ready and cutting back on sugar, I hope to lose a lot more weight.
Until the next blog in three weeks, remember, God loves you and so do I.