Today I’d like to discuss that very fine line between ugly and ugly beautiful because it exists. It’s as real as day and night and to have the intuition to know when something is just ugly ugly rather than making that leap to beautiful is crucial to being stylish. I’ve given this plenty of thought in the past but a purchase I made today at the local thrift store really took things to the next level, even for a veteran such as myself.
The image above is of a silk Saks Fifth Avenue vintage blouse I picked up for a wholesome $15. And yes what you see is piles of puppies, birds, flowers, butterflies and even a ladybug on the collar. WHY but WHY I ask myself is this the most amazing blouse I’ve ever laid eyes on, as opposed to the most awful. Let’s dissect by starting off with the fabric. This gem is 100% silk, and a really nice quality silk at that. Next up the details. The buttons are pretty gold ornate ones that were definitely used on more expensive items when this garment was made (wild guess is late 80’s). CHECK. Next up is the print itself. Ok, so we can all appreciate the irony of a kitschy print, right? Truth be told though it can quickly transition to being plain ugly if not done properly. What I think makes this print INCREDIBLE is the placement of the print and how the center where the buttons fall happens to be a clean white. The added bonus are the placed bugs outside of the main motif such as the butterfly and ladybug at the bottom along with those along the collar.
Colors are also crucial here. The fact that its primarily black and white with splashes of colors found in nature, takes it from cheesy to sophisticated, in other words it’s the natural quality of the colors that works to its benefit. Lastly fit is also quite important, if not the most important. The shirt was clearly made really well and drapes and curves in all the right places.
Now that’s a lesson in spotting the goodies at your local thrift store. GOT ALL THAT?
Happy shopping and good luck finding all the ugly beautiful items out there just waiting to be discovered.