Thursday, September 18, 2008

Yes, I Am Your Bitch

When I was about to go off for a semester spent in the woods of Vermont during my junior year of high school, I packed many a sweater. Sweaters with patterns. Light sweaters. Heavy sweaters. Turtlenecks and crew necks. Nestled in my luggage was a beige, long-sleeved crew neck sweater that my mother had bought from J.Crew back when most of their business was done through catalog. The years had made it soft to the touch, but it still did its job of keeping out the cold.

One day, while sitting in Physics class and wearing the sweater, one of the boys, more obsessed with sweaters than even I, started to pet one of my wool-swathed arms. It's so soft, he cooed. I just smiled.

And thus began my love of/obsession with a particular store.

For the rest of my high school experience, I mainly stayed out of J.Crew. No girl likes entering a store where nothing but the hair accessories and shoes fit. But during my sophomore year of college, somewhat thinner and marginally more confident, I greeted the opening of Princeton, New Jersey's first J.Crew with a squeal and a bounce. I spent the rest of that school year stuffing my closet with sweaters. The dress I wore under my gown at graduation was from that same store. A soft lilac/pink color and probably too tight at the time as I can still wear it to this day.

When their price point rose sharply after college from around Banana Republic level to closer to the contemporary floor at Barneys, I decided that it was time to end the affair. I scoffed at their now charging $650 for a maxi dress. They're too preppy anyway. That's what I told myself. But I was in denial. They actually expanded beyond their preppy aesthetic in those years. And I have preppy running through my blood. Even when I try to ignore it, it has a way of making itself known.

Over those three years since the end of college, we have drifted closer. None of the painful growing apart that I experienced with another store. They pulled back on the embroidering of everything with small critters, and I accepted that I like headbands with flowers on them. If I could only shop in one place for the rest of my life, this would be it. The smile on my face is always widest when walking among their racks of brightly colored sweaters and beautifully patterned dresses. (Yes, at J.Crew I am actually drawn to, as opposed to and repulsed by, the many patterns.)

My current fall wish list is long and varied and soft and pretty and everything I could ever want in a set of clothes.

I can pretend no longer that I hate argyle:

This dress totally has a Joan shape to it:

My Marc by Marc Jacobs wellies had an unfortunate run-in with a supply closet at The New School. These will replace them rather nicely:

All of my pencil skirts now spin around my frame. A new one is needed, especially if it's in yellow:

I haven't bought a pair of non-denim pants in a really long time. Maybe that's because I haven't had a real job in a very long time. I can find another place to wear these. Perhaps to the local dive bar:

And for the topper. The cake topper, as it were:

Yes, I am fully aware that we have drifted over into little girl wedding fantasy land.

Photos via

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