Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Dressing for Schizophrenia

I admit it. There are just some days when I have no idea how to dress. I can put on my clothes and shoes with no problem. I just mean I'm having trouble choosing outfits for this schizophrenic season and this weirdest of weather. Sunday, when this photo was taken, was one of several days in a row of steaming hot temperatures and sunny skies, suddenly morphing into noisy, windy, black thunderstorms that dumped rain and blew the world around, then stopping as suddenly as they started. Then sunny for a while, followed by more wild bluster.  And repeat.

I'm relieved to report that I'm not the only one who had trouble . It's my habit to cruise around TJ Maxx while Dan shops for the restaurant. When he dropped me off right at the front doors, the sun was shining and the rain was sprinkling big, sloppy drops. When I got inside, I saw a young woman in cutoffs and flip-flops, with her barefooted kids in bathing suits. I also saw some after-church outfits, a few yoga pants and racerback tops, but with everyone unprepared for any serious rain.

I particularly noticed a tall, graceful woman with a sleek salt and pepper LOB. It didn't take a psychic flash to know that she'd pulled out the perfectly new, spotless, olive-colored Wellies to wear them at least one time, as well as a very silky, and designer-ish anorak to sport with the boots. A black turtleneck peeped out from under her jacket, which could not have been comfortable in the warm store.

I get it, though. I've welcomed a stormy day in early spring so I could wear a winter piece that I had just got on clearance. Fun to wear it once before it was completely out of season. But in spite of the rain, she looked out of place in the heat, but no more so than the nearly barefooted flip-floppers splashing through the parking lot puddles under the now steely skies. I think the kids in the bathing suits probably were the most practically dressed.

I did okay, though. You can see how the wind bells out the silky little dress ... but it stayed cool (and decently dry in gusty wind) with my jeans underneath. The day I found it and tried it on in the dressing room, I was wearing the blue skinnies and these coral shoes. I loved the long-over-long look, and the blue, white and coral together, so I'm wearing a happy accident. I wore just enough shoe to keep my toes dry, and I no longer care very much if the wind blows my hair around.

Perhaps not what I think of as traditional play clothes for a rainy day, but it worked as well as anything. ( I remind you that I'm not shaped like that with a largish goiter just above my knee.  It was just windy. It's actually pretty when it falls normally. Please use your imagination in my favor.)

I got to see the kids in their bathing suits whooping it up in the largish parking lot puddles as their mom shepherded them toward their minivan. They were enjoying themselves.

The woman in her new wellies must have gotten a similar thrill when she glided elegantly back to her car, impervious to wet feet and shoulders.  She might have been too warm, but I'm pretty sure she was happy because she looked good and she knew it.

I got to wear an outfit that I liked, so that was good.

There really can be no rules for dressing in weather like this.   The best you can do is just wear what makes you happy.


  1. Laurie@ElusiveonionsJune 11, 2014 at 10:22 AM

    Love the wind-blown look Jan. You're a supermodel!

  2. First: this is a very nice outfit. You can never go wrong with the combination of those colours, but I also like the shape, separately and together. You are becoming quite a clutch lover, aren't you? What puzzles me is how you kept dry? Umbrella? Coat with hood? I would never wear such pretty shoes in such heavy rain... they might get damaged!
    As you have pointed out a swimming suit would have been the best, so next time I expect to see a post about you in a swimming suit. With wellies haha.
    PS what do you mean with LOB? I suppose it has something to do with hair, but if I look it up, it says: Line of Business.

  3. Yes, this look definitely works! I especially love the pop of color in the sandals. Very cute.

  4. Love this tunic top, sassy heels and the ear cuff. You're right, just wear what makes you happy. The worst that's going to happen is that you'll get wet. I think I'd go for your approach or the kids in their swimsuits. If its warm you'll soon dry off. xxx

  5. Same weather here!!!! Same problems dear Jan! ;)
    We had tropic hot temperatures and thunderstorms every minute alternating. You look gorgeous! Love this outfit on you very much! The tunic is great, wonderful color and I absolutely love your shoes! AND of course.. can not tell it often enough.. your smile! :)


  6. You look cool and elegant and casually perfect, as always, Jan! Gorgeous shoes (hope they survived the rain) and clutch bag. We are having strangely changeable weather too - glorious sunshine, then torrential downpours, it's tricky!

    (PS. Once a mental health practitioner, always a mental health practitioner; here's an extract from a web page on misconceptions about schizophrenia;
    "It is commonly thought that people with schizophrenia have a split
    personality, acting perfectly normally one minute and irrationally or
    bizarrely the next - this is not true."
    Just saying...! xxxx

  7. I love your shoes, as always: you seem comfortable and put together, but then you always do.
    And I always smile at the way you write about the weather and life in general. xoxo

  8. You look great and that long tunic makes you look taller! Isn't it great when you try on something and it matches with what you're currently wearing? Why mix it up next time? Just use the same formula again. When you get tired of the same styling, then explore and experiment.

    I agree, wear whatever you love and whatever makes you happy. I'm in my shorts and sandals often now but if I go out early in the morning for errands and the weather has dipped, I still see ladies in their uggs! If you feel fab and it jumpstarts your day, then by all means wear what speaks to you.

  9. I love this outfit! I would not have noticed the billowing if you hadn't mentioned it but I would have done the same thing if I were you and generally do that sort of thing all the time. I will point out my bad hair day or my droopy sock or whatever it is that is less than perfect in the photo.

    I love spring rain and so long as my clothing is not going to suddenly shrink on my body due to warm water, I don't mind getting wet. It is difficult to dress in our climate this time of year too. The temperature can fluctuate several degrees and it can be windy or rainy in the morning and clear up in the afternoon or vice versa.

  10. The outfit is brill but the story is even better. You have an eye for detail and the verbal wherewithal to express this. I do so enjoy a good descriptive narrative! Thanks for a great read and a great idea for what to do with a Rogan for Target piece I recently acquired. :D

  11. Nice mix with the shoes and bag Jan! This dress looks great with the jeans and you have mastered this combo. Good story that captures the ups and downs of the season.

    blue hue wonderland

  12. HappinessatmidlifeJune 11, 2014 at 11:01 PM

    You are looking great in your tunic and jeans despite the crazy weather. It rarely rains here so I am not sure what that even feels like anymore. I do miss the rain and probably wouldn't know how to dress if we had some stormy weather.


  13. Long-over-long look...I wasn't sure I was going to like it. but I do!! Great bag and shoes too!

  14. And don't you look fab!!! love the clutch, the touch of orangey/red on the shoes and the long top over leggings...great look. And yes, as a former Arkansan myself, it's true, the weather can be so crazy.

  15. It's not easy dressing for changeable weather. You've done a brilliant job here. Love the pop of colour in the accessories.

    For the past few days it has been hot and humid with rolling thunder showers...between sun and clouds.


  16. Dear Jan,
    you look lovely at any weather! The silk dress is marvellous and so are your pumps.
    I would appreciate wearing only a swim suit, it's too hot even for a dress ;-)
    Sabine xxx

  17. Absolutely gorgeous! The weather is a bit crazy here too - sunny one minute, windy & cold the next. I'm forever dressing in layers. Love your whole outfit.

  18. Rain or shine ~ you look great!


  19. Such crazy weather you are having but you rose to the dressing challenge with great aplomb. The tunic and jeans along with those stunning shoes and clutch , simply perfect. Hope you shoes didn't get too wet.

  20. se├▒ora allnutJune 13, 2014 at 11:22 AM

    oh yeah, dear lady, as a huge fan of 'wear what makes you happy' motto, I agree with enthusiasm!!,
    I don't believe in fashion rules, particularly, I don't know what to wear in a stormy-sunny-stormy day!, a crazy combo like 'wellies and a bikini under a trench'??
    You look adorable and love your outfit, so pretty shape and subtle shades of blue!, cool and elegant!
    and your shoes are just brilliant!

  21. You and I both know that when you live in the deep South summer can be unpredictable and on mercilessly hot. I think you did a wonderful job of addressing poor the weather without looking like a fashion victim in the process. I really liked the dress on you. I know that it's not formfitting but when it's muggy and nasty a little loose flowing fabric never hurt anyone. :-)


  22. Been thinking of you and what I'm guessing is your similar weather! Hope all is safe and sound at your house! Thank you, Alicia. I like the straighter lines these days as a challenge, and am having fun wiht this look. More of this, and monochromatically, to come. The similar fabric is so light, and I like the surprise of the long tunic.
    We may have Sun the whole weekend! I know I'll regret complaining about the rain deeper into summer!
    Thanks so much, as always.

  23. Thanks, Laurie .... I really don't mind some wind in my hair these days. Just adds to the coolness, I think! A quick peek in a mirror, a pat and a twitch, and I'm off.
    So sweet ... I'm not modelesque in any sense, but I appreciate the supporting words.
    Have to say, I like the way this combo looks a lot!

  24. Thank you, Wendy! Nice of you to say so.

  25. very elegant look -- love the pop of color (your shoes).

  26. I'm lucky, Greetje ... we're in the vehicle so much and Dan just pulls up and drops me and picks me up when I'm done. Everything here is spread out, and not walkable ... there's no public transportaion, and our time is limited. So, no need to get very wet, dashing from portico or parking lot to car. Our cities are mostly spread out and take up much more room than many Europen cites. More driving ... I wish we were more conscientious as a country, but we aren't. Particularly here in the plains and southern plains.
    I treat my shoes with water repellant spray ... and I'd just slip them off and go barefoot with them nestled cozy in my purse or shopper.
    Yes ... I regard the ability to reduce my carry-necessities
    You might see me in my horse-barn wellies, but you will NEVER see me in a swimsuit! Ever.
    LOB: it's an aconym for Long Bob.
    So glad to hear from you!

  27. Thank you, Ayana. I'm loving blue and coral from last year, and haven't yet tried blue and yellow ... trickier than orange, even, for me! Glad you like the result of my happy accident.

  28. Thank you, lovely Vix! I didn't even get very wet as Dan and I have to drive quite a lot to get things done where we are. As much as I miss having public transportation available, I like my car in bad weather. Another function of my short cropped hair is that I'm much less affected by wet weather. For me, that happens with very long or very short hair ... it's mid-length cuts that need babying.
    I'm obsessing with cuffs and single, artsy-fartsy earrings right now. Thanks!
    Given you look great in your swim suits, I can see what you mean. However, you'd decimate the male population with your fabulosity and then where would we be? Hmmm?

  29. Hello, Dana! The weather is, indeed, scary. Sorry you're having it, too.
    Thank you! I'm glad you like my simple outfit ... I'm liking very clean silhouettes this year.
    My little secret ... I smile broadly for photos because I don't mind my smile lines, but smiling takes away jowls and droopy cheeks. The bad side is that it pulls my neck out of shape ... but it's all a trade-off!
    So happy you dropped by, Dana!

  30. Oh, thanks, kiddo! The shoes function well as they've been sprayed with protective sprays, and I'm not above kicking them off and padding barefoot back to the car! Haven't had to, lately, but the day will undoubtedly come again!

    Thanks, too, for the terminology advisory ... point taken, and I understand what you're saying. I am aware of the difference; Dan has a psychology-sociology background, in spite of the fact he does something else entirely these days and I've picked up a little over the years. We actually discussed that very thing when I was writing this.
    It's tricky attributing human behavior to weather patters, especially when the behavior is aberrant. The weather behavior I described was like a bipolar disorder, sort of, but there's more highly unusual behaviors that I think of as I'm fretting about climate change. There's been such a pattern of extreme difference in the intensity of our weather, I tend to think of it as the difference between a bad temper within normal human behavior and overpowering and extreme rage than can be just one symptom ( among umpteen others ... delusion, paranoia, etc.) of a serious psychosis. A matter of degree.
    Here, there's so much science denial and fear of the necessary changes that it will take to positively affect global weather changes caused by human activity, and it's hard to write about at all without starting an argument that can't be rationally conducted.
    All that said ... yes, you're right!

  31. Hi, Maria! Thank you so much! I'm glad you see me as confident ... the smile is there because I look best that way ... I have a "mean face" when I'm not smiling. So happy you like my writing, too. Made my week!

  32. Fab accessories here! Love the pop of orange in the shoes and the bright blue clutch to amp up a casual day look. This was an enjoyable read in bringing all these people you saw alive in print. And I can relate to the problem of dressing for schizophrenic weather - fashion hell is trying to dress for an english summer!

  33. Hello, Karen! Cool! I'm happy to look a little taller, and even if it is just in the photo, I'll take it!
    I took that little dress into the fitting room, wondering if it was wearable for me with just little sandals and bare legs. I was too lazy to shuck my jeans, so I just pulled it over my head ... that's how this look happened. Big surprise to me, and I love that. Thank you!
    Uggs .. yes. I see them here with shorts. I have never thought they were that awful for casual wear, but that just looks strange to me.
    Hope you are having a grand week!

  34. Are we perfectionists or what? You caught me on that. I can't stand the thought that anyone would assume that I missed my own error ... sounds arrogant, and it probably is! Kidding aside, as women we are sometimes, in our culture, that self-deprecation is a good thing. I admit it's sometimes funny, too. I just think the word goiter has a "funny ha-ha" sound ... isn't that terrible? Yikes. You're tall, I'm short, but I think we have some stuff in common.
    You're tidy, but I'm not ... we're different there! I'm loving the photos of your very cool and livable home.
    I think layering as style tool was a Northern phenomenon ... been around since forever, but it took a Northern-living-lady to see it.
    Thank you! Glad you like my outfit and that you stopped by!

  35. Thanks, Maricel, so much. Glad you like the little shaggy-dogish anecdote.
    Rogan for Target; I had to go look this up! 2008 ... we had no Target then, sad to say, but that's why I missed it. Phew! Thought for a minute I was off my sort of sad, big-box collaboration game. We're easily entertained out here in the sticks.
    Hope you're having a fabulous week of freedom!

  36. Hey Ann!!!! Thrilled to hear from you! I have another similar treatment to show .. all monochromatic. Thanks so much for coming out of retirement to pop by! News on your show? Please send links if you have any.

  37. Darling Alice ... I so wish you rain! I watch the SoCal weather a lot, and it's distressing. We're feeling your pain here as our produce that comes in from the valley is going sky-high.
    Thank you for liking my accidental outfit!

  38. Debbie StinedurfJune 14, 2014 at 3:14 PM

    Always wear what makes you happy! (As long as it's clean and covers your important parts..ha!) Love the coral shoes with all of the blue. Absolute gorgeousness as always my friend.

  39. Dearest Jan, I'm woefully behind in my blog reading and commenting. Suffice to say, I leave the very best 'til last. Yours is always a good read, and I savor your posts! Looking lovely my dear in blue and coral. And I can practically feel a breath of cool air blowing. Well played!

  40. Hello, Darlene! Thank you! It was an accident, and a happy one, but I've worn this silhouette a few times and I like it a lot when it works. Shirt dresses always remind me of my grandmothers house dresses, but they change attitude a lot with added pieces. So happy you liked my choices.

  41. Hey, Shanni! Hope you've had a wonderful weekend in what sounds like paradise. Was just over at your site and had trouble leaving a comment. Will try again later ... probably just a glitch ... but wanted to say how marvelous this little card project is. Glorious, girl!
    Thank you so much for liking my outfit. Know I'll be wanting rain again before too long!

  42. I understand so well! It's not easy to choose clothes with sudden changes of weather! Very nice to wear the dress with pants underneath! No need to use immagination: yous dress IS more than just pretty! ( and you are wearing wonderful coral colour shoes )

  43. Debbie Baker BurnsJune 15, 2014 at 1:41 PM

    We spent last week vacationing in Tennessee and practically every day it was dark clouds, cloudbursts, then the sun would come out and this was several times each day. Luckily, the rain generally caught us eating under a covered terrace or inside a shop. I love your dress/pants look! I noticed a few ladies wearing those cute shorter dresses with longer shorts on underneath and I liked that look, too. It's a nice way to utilize those shorter styles! Nice pop of color in those heels, too! Debbie @

  44. Thank you, Oksana ... I just realized I have a LOT of coral in my closet this summer. I may have to go on an "anything remotely like orange" wardrobe diet. It likes to hang out with my navy and denim, grays and blacks, pinks and reds, so at least it has company!

  45. I'm wanting to put on many fewer accessories this year than ever before. And I'm liking higher necklines than ever before ... and It's really not because I especially want to hide my aging neck ... they just look newer to my eye, on me, anyway. Thank you so much for your kind comments.
    From all our mutual bloggy friends in the UK, I'm learning that our weather has a lot in common this year. Sad for me that's all that is the same! It's not just fashion hell ... it's just plain old fire-and-brimstone Hell. Summer is coming!

  46. You are always so kindhearted in your comments, Debbie. The older I get, the more parts seem to need coving! But in Penny's the other day, I'd asked a clerk for some general items and she escorted me to the Alfred Dunner department. She actually flinched and leaned back when I told her that "I'll never, EVER be old enough to wear Alfred Dunner". Harumph.
    Thanks for all, kid!

  47. Oh, Sue ... me too. It's less of a merely busy season as it is a nerve-wracking one, and I keep trying to learn to sew, and do all the other things that I like to do. But I persevere. I'm not getting around to read like I'd like either, so thanks for your patience, too! Glad you like my outfit. Wish the breezes were cool ... hot and humid breezes ... so glad I cut my hair!

  48. I can't believe I missed a bunch of comments, yours among them! Rats. Thanks for being patient, Thanks for appreciating my combination ... wet weather is always a trial. It's a little unsettling to have such extremes in weather in so many far-flung places.
    Hope you have a lovely finish to spring!

  49. There you are! So happy to get a note from you. I was at your place, and had a hard time posting ... you were wearing a cream colored tunic that I liked a lot. Such lovely and kind comments ... I'm happy you like one of my favorite outfits!
    See you soon!

  50. I love longer tops with skinnies. Those shoes are wow! I really must have a backless shoe or one with an ankle strap or they just don't stay on my feet. I have the "foot slipping out of the shoe" problem....and no remedy seems to work.

  51. So fun catching up on my blog reading! Adorable outfit! Love the image of the kids in their bathing suits, while Ms. Wellies was in her black turtleneck! Sounds like tough weather to dress for! Love the coral shoes with this. Perfection.


    Dawn Lucy

  52. Gorgeous again, Jan! Simply perfection!


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