Catalogs: Living the dream

Vintage cars draped in Pendleton blankets. Sandy beaches with hammocks swaying in the breeze. A quick flip through a catalog encourages daydreams of living in these fantasy worlds. I squeal with glee at the the sight of a freshly printed catalog in my mailbox. I love them - the way sweaters and tees are stacked enticingly by color; the creative names for colors (beige becomes "beechwood;") the perfectly styled models gazing thoughtfully into the distance. I am not the only one in love with catalogs: James Stegall once wrote a sad missive to the ladies of Lands End. Each catalog has it's own distinctive style, marketed to a specific customer.

Victoria's Secret: Your apartment is so warm you don't need clothes, and every room includes a plush chaise lounge for napping and sexy time. Despite a closet overfilling with silk chemises and cotton boy-shorts, you choose to wear a boned periwinkle corset that is slightly too small for your heaving bosom. You like the feel of sand on your ass. I mean REALLY like it. Also, you have no nipples.

Williams-Sonoma: There is nothing you will not infuse in olive oil.

L.L. Bean: You live just outside of somewhere named Portland (Oregon, Maine, whatever.) You love wearing high-performance outerwear on your day hikes with your golden retriever. In the evenings, you curl up with the New York Times on your enormous red couch, wearing slippers made of boiled wool.

Urban Outfitters: You go to rock shows in your romper. Your apartment is full of sarcastic coffee table books and repurposed window frames , but you don't care because you are always a little drunk, and you look beautiful all the time even though you never wash your hair. Your boyfriend's t-shirt has a Midwestern state on it, and yours has a bird turning into a roller skate, and sometimes you trade and nobody notices.

Brooks Brothers: You are rich, Republican and possibly a little bit evil.

Anthropologie: You have a collection of first-edition Jane Austin novels. Your job involves traveling to Prague and being pensive in rooms. You have a wrought-iron bed. You know how to applique. You buy your art from Etsy. You own a cedar chest filled with heirloom lace. You wear a plumed fascinator constructed of netting and Victoria daydreams to dinner, and no one notices.

J Crew: Your luggage has been lost on your way to East Hampton or Côte d'Azur or wherever you are vacationing that weekend. You are left with only the contents of your carry-on bag: a few silk chemises, a bathing suit, 5 necklaces, a pashmina, two skirts, a cardigan, a pair of socks. In an attempt to make the best of the situation, you wear everything at once and belt it together. It inexplicably looks amazing. Also, you have lots and lots of money. 

Here is my mostly-cataloged outfit from today. I would fit in perfectly in Anthropologie's romantic, muted world, where models gaze wistfully from frosted glass windows and jewelry is glistening dewdrops of wonder. And I thought this blazer would be perfect for the latest challenge on Everybody, Everywhere.

Juicy Couture velveteen blazer; Velvet ruffled top, Anthropologie rufled denim skirt; Anthropologie tights; vintage thrifted boots; vintage thrifted Coach satchel.


  1. Love this one. So funny and right on. You made me laugh. Hugs, Christy C.

  2. Love all the blues together and I just want to pet your blazer because it looks so soft! I love your descriptions of catalogues! So funny, so true!

  3. Too perfect! You always make me smile. You're definitely becoming one of my faves :). Love the color of that blazer!
    Lindsey Soup

  4. ARGH. Google ate my comment!

    I SAID:" That was amusing and totally spot on! And jealousy of that Coach will be the death of me.

    Or something.

  5. Ha. That so true.
    And a velvet blazer? That sounds (and looks) so luxurious!

    The Auspicious Life

  6. I loled at the little descriptions. That blazer is awesome.
    My Heart Blogged

  7. okay, you look as hot as this post is funny. and that's a lot on both counts. honestly. i'm dying over here! and your bag? HEYO, be mine, valentine.

  8. Cute, I love that skirt!

  9. hey there
    found you via Everybody,Everywear
    Love your catalog analogy
    enjoy browsing your blog


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