Friday night was ‘girl’s night’ out in my neighbourhood. Not just any old ‘girl’s night out’ but one to celebrate a special lady’s 70th birthday. The evening merited an outfit worthy of the occasion.
TallBrownFox and I have been very lucky that where we live now and at our last place, we know / have known our neighbours. Not just known them, as in, we’ve smiled nervously at each other over the garden fence, but as in we’ve become friends, purposely hung out with each other down the pub, barbequed together, even been to each other’s weddings. I know, who has neighbours you actually like so much, you have them in your wedding photos? FOREVER!
There’s a long established tradition within my immediate neighbours that on big ‘0’ birthdays and at Christmas, the girls go out for a meal to celebrate. And a couple of times a year, the boys go out for a curry. We’re not talking Michelin-starred haute cuisine here, just local bistros where we can all enjoy each other’s company, without having to sell one of our vital organs in order to foot the bill.
My business attire pretty much consists of wearing lycra and leggings (no, I’m not an aerial artiste for Cirque du Soleil), which doesn’t allow for much creativity in the dressing department. When I do go out, I like to be a little more stylish than opting for a great pair of jeans and a sparkly top.
My love affair with maxi dresses is ever growing. Over the last couple
of years, petite ranges have increased the variety on offer from
casual / beach maxis to ones that wouldn’t look out of place at a
wedding. This season, there are some uber stylish petite ones around.
When I saw this not-quite monochrome dress first appear in Debenhams’ Petite
Collection a few months ago, I thought how striking it looked but at £50, it struck too
deep into my monthly budget.
I quietly bided my time and was duly rewarded.
Sales are getting earlier and earlier these days and 2 weeks ago, when it was barely mid-June, it was in the sale. I swooped silently, like a
kestrel descending upon it’s prey. A few clicks online and it was mine, at a more budget friendly £35.
Days are definitely warming up thankfully but evenings can still be chilly. My petite, faux leather, waterfall jacket was perfect for that early evening dip in temperature. The shorter length means the print of the dress is shown off to maximum effect and the jacket’s snug fit doesn’t bulk me out (which can so often happen when you’re petite). The zip pockets on the side add another focal point to the soft draping of the jacket’s front.
Once inside the restaurant, I just slipped off the jacket. The dress is so comfortable to wear as the material gently drapes from under the bust. Good thing too; not only were profiteroles consumed for dessert but one of the ‘girls’ had sneakily bought a birthday cake. When the waiters brought it out to accompany tea and coffee at the end of the meal, candles blazing in the soft light of the room, the whole restaurant erupted into a hearty rendition of Happy Birthday. Cue delight and embarrassment in equal measure from the birthday girl!
Black and white, although crisp looking, can be a tad dull if you love colour, like me. Although yellow isn’t really my colour, I get away with it here as it’s only in the centre of the flowers. I love how the print is graphic style; it’s as if the petals and their striations have been hand-drawn on the material.
You even get the detail of the stamens. An epicentre of energy bursting outwards.
I debated which necklace to wear. In the end, I chose my multi-strand, faux pearl and glass bead, illusion necklace over a black one (try saying that mouthful after a few glasses of wine). That evening I prefered how the pearls softened the dress slightly. A more formal occasion, I’d have worn a jet black, beaded, waterfall necklace (not such a mouthful to say).
I even had time to pamper my feet with a mini home spa treatment.
I’m pleased to report neither nail varnish remover or nail varnish was spilt in the execution of the mini home spa treatment.
Wedges with maxis are like bread and butter; made for each other.
Madam, your carriage awaits.
Special mention to TallBrownFox who commuted home earlier than normal to be in time to take the photographs for me before I nipped 2 doors down, for pre-restaurant fizz. And extra special mention to the lovely B, who organised the whole evening single-handedly.
Floral Black & Cream Evening Maxi Dress: Debenhams Petite Collection
Faux Leather Waterfall Jacket: Dorothy Perkins Petite
Black Raffia Bag: Jones the Bootmaker, old
3 strand Necklace and Bracelet; old
Black Wedges: New Look last year