Good morning, Thursday. I believe I've reached the angry part of my quarantine program. I am pissed off that we are still so deep in this pandemic, irritated that I feel trapped at home, yet still somehow grateful for all the things i do have to count as blessings.
So my nap dress post was popular. And nap dresses even had a moment in the New Yorker. But since athleisure and nap dresses have both gotten so much play, wtf else will we want to wear come Fall and by we I mean me?
Bet you didn't see this one coming. Because I want to be like Belinda. As in Carlisle.
The other night I watched a fab Showtime documentary on The Go Gos, the ultimate Calfornia girl band that sealed our lips and made us all want vacations. Turns out these girls were not quite the pure sunny ladies they appeared to me- a more typical rock star story was revealed-sex, drugs, you know the drill. These girls started out on the punk scene and then progressed to pop stars. And of course, at their helm with that perfect pop pitch was Belinda Carlisle. The girl of my fashion dreams.
In 1986, Carlisle went solo and made a video for a song called "Mad About You" that was hugely influential on my fashion choices in life. Though I could never be a button nosed, blond bobbed California girl, I could channel that effortless sex appeal in my own way, and as I rewatched the video this week, I realized this- Belinda's style in this video is the epitome of everything I want from my quarantine chic.
The video's premise is all about Belinda and her beautiful sunny sexiness, sashaying around Southern California being madly in love. Andy Taylor of Duran Duran even made an appearance. But other than the cameos and catchy lyrics, this video is so stylish and feels oh so very right now somehow.
See it for yourself here, and know why I am listing the following pieces as perfectly compliant for quarantine. Here we go:
A black oversized turtleneck. In the video, Belinda's iconic dance around the beach is all about that outsized black mock turtleneck and the hoop earrings (more on that later). Was she wearing pants? Who knows and who cares. We don't need no damn pants in quarantine. To update the look, I love this version from Cuyana. Supa chic.
A bralette. Ok yea. I know. I'm 50 and maybe I'm not having a coquettish pillow moment wearing a bra top. But maybe I am. Who cares. Nobody can see me. In the video, Belinda rocks a bra top with a shrunken cardi and trousers, all black. I love this Norma Kamali bralette, and with indie brands like Negative, Pansy, and Cuup making bras you want to show off, there are no shortage of good bralettes on the scene.
A shrunken cardi. A shrunken cardi appearing in a video in 1986 is pretty ahead of its time because for me, a shrunken sweater was very 90s, and believe me, I wore the hell out of them. Get something simple like this one from Saks or go more prim and preppy with this one from Kate Spade.
A cashmere v neck boyfriend sweater. Just so ya know. Everything is black here. That's the brief. I love a good boyfriend sweater and this one from J.Crew is just right. Incidentally, an oversized black cashmere cardigan works too. Very very well. Here's one.
Black trousers. Yea yea ok. Pants are sometimes necessary. Belinda wore her bralette and cardi with some pleated, easy cropped pants. I love this look. And there are no better pants in my mind that from Noir Kei Ninomiya or Comme des Garcons. I splurge on a pair every year. They are perfection. The Japanese are the best when it comes to menswear inspired looks for ladies. I realize we're not going anywhere. But you may. And sometimes, you just want to wear the pants. So wear 'em. And if Japanese design is too high of mind (and pocketbook), how cool are these from COS?
An everyday LBD. You know what's great about most of the stuff I've listed in this post? You most likely have something like any of the above in your closet already. Basics are so on brief right now. And there's no way you don't have a little black dress in your closet. And maybe you'll go to a socially distanced something or other and will want something classic. So do like Belinda who ran through the streets of LA in a sleeveless and retro inspired LBD. That look is not super hot right now so a little hard to find something like it, but I know you have a sleeveless black dress in your closet. I have several. If you're feeling vintage, I love this one on Etsy. Very Audrey H. For a more modern take, how about going for something silky and lingerie like? This one from Modern Citizen is (racerback) bra friendly and would like just swell with the shrunken or oversized cardigan above. What a good look. I also like this one from Aritizia. Sexy.
A party dress. This is not a black dress. This is a festive dress because maybe you're gonna do date night at home and want to dress for it. I've heard crazier things in my life. I'd go with.a vintage wiggle dress like this one. Or this shape is so Belinda. Lovely. What's wrong with all dressed up and nowhere to go? Not a damn thing.
And of course, the Ray Ban Clubmaster is just everything. To update, I love the oversized version. So good with a bob and some lipstick.
Also- that makeup and hair- I'm mad about it. In the best of ways. How gorgeous and still so perfect right now? Stunning. Lately I've been doing makeup in the morning because somehow, it gives me hope. I know that's weird but that's my trip right now. I could only aspire to this vintage visage. Insanely beautiful and timeless.
So what have we learned? It's all black basics with a hint of party and classic cuts. So be like Belinda and go for effortless, easy pieces that are sexy, smart, and understated. I may just say see ya to the nap dress and adios to athleisure. It's all about going back to basics for Fall. Way back to basics, that is. Cause that's what's up this mad about you kind of throwback Thursday in the 718. Now go shop your closet and see how you can economize for Fall, or alternatively, invest in classic pieces that will last a lifetime. Yours, in go go going. XO