maxing out a maxi

A few months ago I tried on and fell in love with my first maxi dress.  I was honestly surprised that it looked good on me, but I chalked it up to it being a petite size and therefore styled for some of the short-and-twiglike variety.

Trouble was, it cost around $60, and I was already very hesitant about spending anything over, oh, ten bucks on a trendy piece like that.  I gave it a farewell and left cursing the Loft Outlet for still being so dang expensive.

Then Kevin and I went to Lincoln City for our mini-honeymoon.  Lincoln City has two main attractions: the beach, and the Tanger Outlets.  The outlets had a pretty standard collection for a while – a no-name bookstore, Harry & David, Gap, Levi’s, etc. – but they’ve recently opened up a Maurice’s and (gasp!) a Loft Outlet.

At this point a column of light descended from the heavens and a chorus of angels sang and Kevin resignedly followed his rapturous wife through the doors and into the Loft Outlet.

Amazingly, months later, the maxi dress was still there, now on sale for around $40…in size 00P.  That was still a bit pricey, but clearly the universe had brought this dress back to me.  I found a store employee and held up the dress.

“Please tell me you have this in a size 2P.”

“Hmm, I’ll go look…give me just a minute.”

She disappeared and Kevin and I wandered the racks some more.  After a while the saleswoman reappeared, that miraculous dress in her hands.

“We only had a size 2 left, not petite, I’m sorry, but I can call to see if any of the other store still have it.”

“Nothat’sokay, I’ll take that one.”

“Are you sure?  I can just call – ”

“Seriously, that one will be fine.  Thank you.”

And it was, and I got it, and life was good.

Then I began to realize that I’d purchased a very cleavagetastic dress, one that would have suited me just fine on the Oregon coast, but wasn’t so appropriate for a jaunt to Borders.  Well, it might be just fine, but on a decolletage scale of “Amish” to “Lil’ Kim,” I’m around a…well, around someone who doesn’t like to expose their entire collarbone region when they’re not at a party.

So I got creative.

Dress: Loft Outlet
T-shirt: Banana Republic Outlet
Shoes: not present

Yeah, it’s a little 90s, but wearing this like a jumper worked quite well, especially when I used a colored tee and not a plain white one.  In fact, I don’t really know why I never tried this before.  I have a couple spaghetti-strap dresses that never get worn because they need the right occasion, and this is a good way to make them more multipurpose.

Bonus: with this dress, I get to get my Elizabeth Bennet on.

“Oh Mr. Darcy! It’s actually far too hot for this attire. Let us take a turn around an air-conditioned room.”

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8 thoughts on “maxing out a maxi

    • Haha, I guess I’m a little wary of 90s fashion because the 90s were a very very awkward style time for me. I didn’t stop wearing handmade clothes until 6th grade, I tucked my shirts into my jeans until 7th grade, and I wore a white elastic headband every day for approximately two and a half years.

      Oh, and turtlenecks. Eueugrguhghggh. Turtlenecks.

  1. Very pretty maxi, also my friend had a shirt with the same problem so she made herself a lace bandeau that she would layer underneath but you could do it with any stretchy fabric!

  2. Cute look! Being small-of-chest and mostly-cleavage-averse myself, I have been using a similar trick with a maxi dress this summer, but layering with tank tops underneath (including my husband’s undershirts when laundry deems it necessary).

    • Camis work, too, although then there’s the problem of looking like your bra straps are showing. I realized I don’t actually have many tanks tops – just one bright pink one and a teal one, neither of which looked very nice with this dress. 🙂

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