The Girl in the Printed Dress

Linen button-front dress in Roller Girl, J. Crew (now only available in solid colors online). Denim button down, Jessica Simpson Denim (old). The Essex Messenger in bittersweet, Madewell. Scout Leather Chevron Necklace in black, c/o Danani. La Mer Wrap watch. Mossimo Supply Co. Strappy Flat Sandals, Target (seriously the best deal ever).

     While I didn't make it past the first book in the series, one particular sentiment from Sophie Kinsella's Confessions of a Shopaholic novel (and later movie) has always stuck with me. Rebecca Bloomwood, the main character, justifies buying a high-priced green scarf despite a mountain of debt because she fantasizes about how the scarf will impact her life. It will make people think of her as "the girl in the green scarf" and she will become that much more elegant because of the accessory. 
     Thankfully, I have no debt to impact my shopping decisions. But I still find myself justifying purchases in this way. I love imagining the kind of days I will spend in newly acquired items. Often, that's where the charm of a garment lies: what does this say about my personality? What will people think when they see it? How will my life change because of it?
     This line of thinking has the potential of seeming overly dramatic to those outside of the fashion community, but it's those stop-and-stare worthy items that end up meaning the most to us all. This printed dress from J. Crew is one such item for me. Upon seeing the dress in the window right around the time that the store was supposed to be closing, all I had time to do the first time I spotted it was run in and feel the fabric in awe. It's a heavy linen that felt perfectly luscious for summertime and that print. I couldn't get the dress out of my mind.
     A few days later, I decided I should just go for it. Sale or no sale (although at J. Crew there's always that handy 15% student discount), I knew that this dress was going to be mine. I'm glad I pounced when I did; both this dress and the shorts in the same print quickly went out of stock online. I found the dress before it was even introduced to the online store and was fearful that I'd never be able to find it again in my size if I didn't purchase it then and there.
     In the end, I know there are more important things to worry about than the perfect dress or what I'm going to wear. The little "Made in China" on the tag didn't make taking the plunge any easier when it came to this dress. But I'll wear this dress so often- this summer and seasons beyond- that you might as well call me "the girl in the printed dress".