Dress: ASOS // Boots: Topshop Barley2 (old) // sunglasses: House of Harlow ‘Chelsea’
A few days after this dress appeared on the ASOS website, I started getting messages from people suggesting that I might want to check it out. It’s not hard to see why that would happen, is it? I mean, a polka dot midi dress WITH LONG SLEEVES? (LONG! SLEEVES!) It might as well have had “Amber will totally buy this” written all over it, no?
And, of course, I DID totally buy it. In fact, the dress was already en route to me by the time the first message flooded in. Well, you find a polka dot dress with LONG SLEEVES, you don’t want to mess about, do you? Or else you find yourself in a “mint green Zara dress” kind of a situation, and lord knows, I think the first time that happened was more than enough for one lifetime. And also the second, third, and eleventy-first times.
Anyway, I ordered the dress, and the dress duly arrived. I excitedly pulled it on, turned to the mirror… and then recoiled in horror, because let me tell you folks, fresh out of the delivery bag, this dress did not look ANYTHING like it did on the ASOS website, or, indeed, like it does in these photos. Mostly because it was almost ankle length on me. Whoops.
See, when most high street brands describe something as “midi”, they’re not being strictly honest. For one thing, most people these days seem to define “midi” as “knee length”, when it should really mean “mid-calf length”, and for another, when brands describe their clothes in terms of length, you always need to mentally add the words “on the model” onto the end of the sentence to get a proper idea of what they’re talking about.
For the most part, this works out pretty well for me, because when a dress is knee length on the model, it’s generally going to hit just below the knee on me, which is a good, almost-midi length. (A true midi would make me look like Mayor Frumpy McFrumpertson, of Frumpton. Trust me, it wouldn’t be good.)
No, when ASOS call something a “midi”, they’re not messing around. It might not be mid-calf length exactly, but it’ll definitely be a length for which I believe the technical term is “pretty damn long“. And it’ll be PDL on the model. Who, as the website helpfully informs us, is 5″10. (I’m not being sarcastic, by the way: I love it when websites tell you what height the model is. It makes it less of a shock when you look nothing like her in the clothes…)
On me, meanwhile? Let’s just say I looked like a member of some kind of strange religious cult which practices extreme modesty, and also: polka dots. Seriously, when Terry saw me in it, he immediately started looking around for the polka dot sister wives. ”Mayor McFrumperston” didn’t even begin to describe it.
Luckily, however, having bought quite a few midi dresses from ASOS recently (and also having realised quite some time ago that I am not 5″10), I had been prepared for this eventuality, and had placed my long-suffering mother on standby to perform the necessary alterations. (Yes, I should just learn to sew, I know…) That’s why the dress you see in the photos is one which has had a really quite shockingly large amount of fabric chopped off the bottom. It’s also a dress which is being worn backwards. Yes, backwards. See, I’m not just short in the leg department. I’m also apparently short in the “neck to chest” department (To make up for this, when they were handing out torsos, they gave me a freakishly long one. I should REALLY learn how to sew…), meaning that any item of clothing that is even vaguely scoop or V-necked will look borderline obscene on me, the neckline serving simply as a frame for my bra, which will be on show at all times. Classy. And also: frumpy! Seriously, folks, this dress had it ALL!
Actually, to be perfectly honest, the neckline on this isn’t too bad: in fact, I will probably wear it the way ASOS intended at some point, too. But for the most part, I have learned that low necklines are not my friends, and that I much prefer a high neck/low back combination than the other way around. Happily, with the label removed, this dress works both ways, which means it’s ALMOST like having two dresses, but for the price of one, no? No?
Also, while I’m here:
Look, I know it’s just a lens flare. I do. But… can’t we just pretend the aliens are totally after me? Trust me, it’ll make this blog MUCH more interesting if it’s not JUST a fashion blog, but is a “fashion blog where aliens are secretly trying to abduct the blogger” blog. I don’t THINK that’s been done yet, but, well, nothing would really surprise me at this point…
[Usual disclaimer: Yes, I had a coat in the car, which was parked just out of shot. I took it off for a few seconds to grab some quick photos, otherwise I'd have written this 800-word post about my polka dot dress, and you'd all have just been, "WHAT polka dot dress? All I see is a coat?! Could she not just have taken the coat off for ONE MINUTE so we could at least see the dress?!"]