I own a lot of grey, black, and brown clothes. Oh, the brown. The light brown, dark brown, in between brown, sort of brown so let’s call it tan, brownish, oh shit is that mauve. Chocolate brown, kinda brown, biscuit, semi brown, sandy brown, russet, sepia. I have no burnt sienna, although Crayola has been trying to tell me since childhood that this is a shade of brown. I used to own so much brown and wear it all together (like an ecru shirt with chocolate pants) that my husband would call me neutral woman. I told this to a friend once and we’ve used it to describe drab clothing days since then.
I love color. I love wearing pretty, bold colors, but not lime green because no, that doesn’t look good on even you. I tend to wear color (outside of coats; I can always find an undark coat) mainly in spring and summer though because the Gap will tell you ain’t no color in fall or winter. I own all the grey suits from Banana Republic. Grey stripe, plain grey, light grey, dark grey, Heather grey, what? Why is Heather gray? She’s gray because seasonal affective disorder perpetuated by fashion.
I feel like I’m always on a quest to add more color to my wardrobe when it’s cold. Yet darks are what I always find because it’s not good enough that the sun hates us in winter; we must also dress like Wednesday Addams.
Sometimes I troll the clearance rack in Target. I’m rarely lucky because a. I like stuff to fit, and 26c. I don’t need a swimsuit in December. But one day, Target pleased me.
One day I found a beautiful, perfect for me, just my size, maroony, burgundy, wine colored sweater dress and it was magical. It had a cowl neck, was long sleeved, and had cute ruching on the sides. It was still dark, but at least it wasn’t black, grey, or burnt umber. I saw it, but I was still in the aisle between yoga pants, I mean pajamas, and clothes. I saw a random woman moving through racks so I called to my daughter, DEFENSE, DAMMIT. I don’t know if that means anything. Was it supposed to be offense? Didn’t matter, because she followed my eyes and knew to get the dress because she is my spirit shopper. (Seriously, I can open the doors to any store, say pink, and she’s back in 8.2 seconds with options that are probably not pink, but are what spoke to her as what I needed. I trust her with my get me out of this chestnut quest.)
So there we are, separated by a clearance rack. She grabbed the dress and met me with it and my happiness cannot be described. It was soft. It was pretty. It was mine. IT WAS $8.48!
Two days later I was getting ready for work, deciding on what to wear because no matter how often I say I’m going to prepare the night before, I be drankin’, and I just don’t, shut up. I decided on the dress. I went to take off the tag. Y’all. Cue the record scratch.
Maternity. Liz. Lange. Maternity.
Insert your best THIS SHIT HERE face.
I was upset at first because come on. I wasn’t in the maternity section. This is not the first time I’ve picked up something SO CUTE and then had to smack my lips together because maternity. This time, though, I was pissed. So many thoughts flew through my mind, primarily ones about how I’m not having anymore kids, how this is a slap in the face of my non-decision to not have more kids. I’m never going to need maternity clothes again. I don’t need to be reminded of that. The dress was going back.
So I wore the dress to work. Shut up, I was late.
I got so many compliments on the color, and then it happened.
Let me stop here and explain something to you. I suffer from a serious medical condition called the food baby. I’ll show you if you want. After I eat, my stomach becomes enlarged and I look four months pregnant for three hours. I was in the bathroom when it happened. I came out and got a smiling, knowing glance from another woman. “Your dress is so cute. When are –” I made the DON’T DO IT face.
Come on. The food baby wasn’t THAT real. It was the dress. It was the ruching. It lies. Moreover, haven’t we been over this? Haven’t we determined that the proper time to ask a woman a question about being pregnant is never? Had she asked a dumb question, I would have given an equally dumb answer, glancing at the toilet, “Two hours.”
The point of it all is this: Liz Lange and Target want women to fight in restrooms.
Beware the ruche.