At the Fabulous Las Vegas sign wearing Pinup Couture Jenny dress

Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas, Nevada

Pinup Couture 'Jenny' dress in orange border print

Oh, Vegas, where do I even start, you crazy, amazing place, you?

Actually, I think I’ll probably start with Vegas itself some other time, if it’s OK with you guys. Because the thing is, Vegas is an assault on the senses, really. We were there for two nights, but it somehow felt like much longer – and, knowing me, those two nights will translate to WAY more than 48 hours worth of blog reading, won’t they? You know what they say: what happens in Vegas gets blogged about in excruciating detail! Or something like that, anyway.

I’ll have another Vegas post for you next week sometime, is what I’m trying to say. Today, though, I mostly just want to talk about this dress. Which, no, I didn’t choose because it matches the ‘Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas’ sign. Not saying I wouldn’t have done that if I’d thought of it, mind you, but it really was just a happy co-incidence, pinky swear. No, this is the dress I went home and ordered online after having no luck finding it (or, indeed, any of the other things I’d gone there for) in the Pinup Girl Store. I had to have it overnighted so it would get there on time, and honestly, by the time I’d taken into account the expedited shipping and the California state tax, it cost me almost as much as it would have if I’d had it sent to the UK. So basically I spent the entire year refusing to order from the PUG website to save myself some money (“I’ll just go to the store when I’m in LA!” I told myself, optimistically…), only to get to LA… and end up ordering from the PUG website. GOD.

Still, it was definitely worth it, because not only do I absolutely love it, it also turned out to be the most-complimented dress I’ve ever worn, seriously. Right after taking these photos, we headed off to Fremont Street for a wander (and also so that Terry and my dad could ride the scary zipline there), and so many people stopped me to say something nice about this dress that it actually started to get quite embarrassing. I hesitate to even mention this, because I know it sounds obnoxiously braggy, but let me just say that this had absolutely nothing to do with me and my sunscreen-sticky hair  (I bought the worst sunscreen ever the day before we left for Vegas, and suffice to say my hair paid the sticky, sticky price…), and everything to do with how NICE American people are, and how willing they are to compliment complete strangers.

I mean, I know there are exceptions to this, obviously, but I’ve been noticing it for years, and in various different cities and states, so my conclusion is that it’s not me, it really is them.  It’s just one of those interesting differences between UK and US culture, and while there are lots of nice British people, too, having lived in the the UK my entire life, I’ve had someone compliment my outfit exactly ONCE in all that time. And it was an American girl, here on holiday. (It was this outfit, seeing as you’re obviously really interested…)  Don’t get me wrong, people in the UK aren’t normally rude, exactly – it’s not like I get a lot of nasty comments from passers-by, or anything like that –  but they’re rarely complimentary, either, and if they see someone wearing something even slightly out of the “norm”, they’re more likely to just stare incredulously, than to say something nice about it. They’ll leave you in no doubt that they see you as “weird”, and that they look down on you for it, and it’s a really horrible feeling.

In the US, meanwhile, people just walk up to you and tell you they love your hair, or your dress, or your shoes, or whatever. (Or they pay no attention to you at all, which is also fine by me…)  It happened to me almost every day on holiday, and as I said, it’s happened to me ONE TIME here at home, so it really stands out, and makes me so much more likely to wear the things I love, without worrying that people are going to be constantly sniggering. I’m not saying that people should be randomly complimenting me all the the time, obviously, or that I deserve praise from anyone, because I definitely don’t: I just think that, well, it’s nice to be nice, isn’t it? I know this probably sounds strange coming from a fashion blogger, but I worry a lot about how people will react to me and what I’m wearing (Mostly because here at home,  they tend not to react positively…), and it was just refreshing to not have to think about it, or to know that the reaction was more likely to be, “Oh, you’re wearing a dress, cool!”, rather than, “You’re wearing a DRESS? Who do you think you ARE?” Which sums up the mentality of a lot of people back home, I think.

Um, that went off on a bit of a tangent, didn’t it? TL;DR – I love this dress, and I’m going to make it my mission to compliment strangers on the street from now on: because just one kind word can make someone’s day…

Pinup Girl Jenny dress in orange border print

WEARING: PinUp Girl Clothing ‘Jenny’ dress in orange border print; River Island shoes; sunglasses c/o Unique Vintage

17 Comments
  1. Great skirt! Love the outfit. Now, re your post: I think that in the UK and the Europe in general, people are simply more reserved, so even if they do like your outfit/hair/shoes they will simply feel inappropriate to point it out to a complete stranger. Although I am not saying they don’t stare if they think you are standing out in some sort of a way, I also don’t think it is always necessarily bad we don’t just jump to compliment some total stranger at the bus stop. It’s a different culture, in my opinion. Also, it could have something to do with how cosmopolitan place you are visiting. LA or Vegas are one thing – try visiting some small town in Utah. I for one find London such a diverse place, everyone wears what ever they feel like; up North, where I live, you are far more likely to find people staring at you if you wear something out of the ordinary.

  2. That’s a really good point – I can’t recall a time anyone’s approached me just to give a compliment either… and also, I’ve never done it myself, so I can’t really complain! It’s just not the done thing here… But that dress IS amazing, although having to order it on the website anyway is exactly the kind of thing that always happens to me, so I had to laugh!

  3. What do you mean people react negatively to your clothes? What do they say to you? Isn’t it common for women to wear dresses in your country?

  4. As a Spaniard living in NYC, I’ve definitely noticed how willing strangers here are to compliment one’s outfit, or hair, etc. I love it, and do it myself as well! However, New York is a very cosmopolitan place, and people tend to be more open minded here (and LA, and other big cities). I’m sure I’d get stares and weird looks if I lived in some small town elsewhere, where standing out isn’t considered a good thing.

  5. Amazing dress! It looks so good on you and was perfect to take a picture with the Las Vegas sign! It was definitely worth the extra shipping fee & sales tax! 🙂

    I grew up in Europe and have lived in the SF Bay Area for almost 25 years.I can definitely see the difference you describe between Europe and here.

  6. Definitely a gorgeous dress, love the print and the colour. You need to visit Australia, we’re a really friendly bunch, although more so in the country where I am. We all say “G’day” to total strangers, and where I used to live in a really remote rural area every one you pass in their cars will do the steering wheel wave at you, which is basically wave with one finger whilst holding the steering wheel. I guess that is testimony to how rare it is to pass someone on the road when driving!!
    Amber

  7. I love that dress too, it looks fabulous on you. But I have to take you up on one point – I must be the exception to the rule because I often go up to beautiful young women to say I love their outfit/hair/shoes/whatever. And they always love it, one time I told a young woman she was stunningly beautiful and he male escort, said “Told you”. More recently on the South Bank I told a young woman who was in the middle of a phone call that she had great shoes. She smiled and said thanks. I asked if I didn’t know her (I usually do this with men), then realised she was a tv presenter, and she was much more beautiful than on tv. I apologised for interrupting her call, and she said thanks again. Lovely girl. But my daughter gets mightily embarrassed when I tell a handsome young man that he has beautiful eyes, or great teeth (I like nice teeth), or lovely smile, as she thinks I’m the granny who flirts with handsome young men (as if I would). So I do it, but I must not be normal, and that is the greatest compliment my 7 year old grandson gave me when he said I was not a normal granny.

  8. It’s a gorgeous dress! So bright and colourful… just like you’re personality 😀 I also LOVE Vegas… I spent a couple of weeks there over New Year in 08/09. It was amazing. I’d love to go back and see how things have changed. I was so taken aback (in a good way) about how all the hotels are like mini cities… so amazing!!!!).
    Suzy x
    http://www.suzyturner.com
    P.S I’m one of those people that would come up to you in the street and tell you how cute you look (and I’m a Yorkshire lass!) x

  9. Dear Amber, I spent my holiday in the US this summer too and this is what I reported about it to my Dutch friend after coming back home 3 weeks ago:
    “People are generally very nice and they enjoy talking to everybody, even strangers. I kept getting compliments on my clothes, was told I had a charming accent (!) and a pretty blond girl in her late teens or early 20s walked up to me in the mall to tell me that I was absolutely beautiful (!!). I was speechless. Interestingly, all the compliments came from women. It’s not a big deal and it can make someone’s day. So here’s the lesson I took: If you have something nice to say, say it.”
    I always thought travelling makes me better. But I guess travelling make us better :-).
    I’m amused by the coincidence and I really really enjoy your posts. Best wishes from Prague, P.

  10. It was totally worth the cost, because that dress is A-MAZING! They don’t have any more in my size (*sob*) or I would order one myself right now!

  11. Awww you just made me miss America, thank god I’m going in three and a bit weeks! Even though I’m American and lived the first 26 yrs. of my life there, I have auto corrected to the U.K. “Keep yourself to yourself” ways – and am always stunned to get off a plane and have people be SO friendly, it really takes a while to adjust back to it! And I think it’s nice you aren’t freaked out by it the way most Brits are!

    I think that besides the fact your dress is just plain stunning, it maybe stood out even more in Vegas? Was everyone wearing slinky beaded bedazzled things? I can’t even imagine what it’s like, look forward to your report! 🙂

  12. Hi Amber

    I have just emailed you privately as I have seen your image used on another website, I have sent you the link as I am not sure if you have given them permission. You never can tell.

    1. Hi!

      I’m all over eBay, unfortunately – I’ve pretty much given up on policing it, because it’s just never ending 🙁 Thanks for letting me know!

  13. Thank you for this nice comment about Americans. We’re often described as fat, rude and loud (which is probably true!). I frequently give complements and was just told twice that someone liked my coat. It really does make your day and is such an easy thing to do. And you really do look lovely in that dress.

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