Yes, I will be celebrating my 21st birthday next Wednesday, and following tradition I will throw a party, attempt to take twenty-one shots (of which I will probably have five), open presents (hopefully, a Louis Vuitton backpack or a picture of a Louis Vuitton backpack), and kiss and laugh . . . and I will wear a dress.
My birthday party, while I’ll call it a “tiki party,” could be called instead an ode to the summer dress. In a few short weeks, wearing any sort of L.A. day dress will be out of the question as snow and liquid-pink organza doesn’t quite mix. This is the last call for my best-loved symbol of summer.
I will subtly hint at the appropriate attire by using old “Something about Mary” invitations complete with Cameron Diaz in pink dress and hat. The fall leaves might crunch a few people’s style, but grabbing the last bit of Indian summer in a knee-baring skirt or dress will be well worth it.
The virtuous summer dress is a multifunctional piece of beauty. Contrary to popular belief, there is incredible movement in dresses — just look at tennis players. There are usually no buttons or zippers to worry about, and although tight pants are in style, tight skirts almost never are.
Back to the party. Hopefully lots of different types of dresses will show up ready to dance.
This brings up two more star-skirt qualities: fabric movement and variable lengths. Last season, the rediscovery of the mini-skirt prompted a summer leg extravaganza.
On a completely functional level, an itty-bitty skirt keeps one out of the heat. Meanwhile, a long flowing Dolce and Gabbana fabric literally swims through the air on hot and humid August days.
Another summer dress option — the dress as a complete outfit. No need to think about matching the top with the bottom. Using this logic, it is justifiable to spend a bit more on a dress due to the fact that with one pull over the head, you’re ready to go out the door. (At least this is what I tell myself, at the counter . . . like, yeah, of course!)
These days are chilly. Fleece is zipped up around my neck, and a turtleneck sweater is hiding underneath. My waders have turned into long gray pants. The best I could hope to wear today would be a thick pair of tights and heavy wool skirt.
Yes, clearly the days basking in the sun at the terrace are gone, but I will keep the red silk dress, the Hawaiian print dress, the army-style halter dress, the small black dress, and a few skirts at the forefront of the closet for a brighter and sunnier day.
During the winter snow, I may have visions of running out into the cold night air and tossing off the Patagonia while parading in my favorite rose-print dress. Those will be visions.
But no matter. For now I can pluck the gold-and-pink Bestey Johnson corset/organza number from the closet and work on mixing a few drinks, and mixing a few tapes.