July 5, 2011

Take It Up A Notch

Via The Coveteur

"Elegance is innate. It has nothing to do with being well dressed. Elegance is refusal." Diana Vreeland 

Hope you all had a wonderful weekend. Happy 4th of July to all of you American readers and Happy Canada Day Canadian friends. If you had a long weekend I hope you enjoyed every luxurious minute of it. Summer is fleeting, so it's important to savor it. The highlight of my long weekend was the gentleman surprising me with matinée tickets to American Ballet Theatre's Swan Lake. 

The gentleman knows me very well. Surprise or no surprise, you're not going to get me to go anywhere without some sort of guideline on dressing. My instructive- "come as your elegant self" with a few examples tossed in for good measure. 

It's always so nice to see ABT perform. The ballet makes me nostalgic for pointe shoes, leotards, rehearsals, classical music and the all important révérence (bow or curtsy).  Having danced and been a gymnast for years it's the overall feeling of gracefulness and precision that I adore. 

There are few occasions that inspire people to take it up a notch and come completely turned out. Thankfully a trip to the ballet is one of those aforementioned occasions. Little white suits and cocktail dresses were the order of the day. It's nice to see so many people looking  polished. Vogue has the right idea with this week's "The Social Shopper: Simple Ways to Convey Easy Elegance." The roundup includes items that I consider summer staples- little dresses, pale manicures, and black patent pumps to name a few. Along with nude patent leather pumps that are on my summer shopping list. I think it's safe to say that elegance is here to stay.  


  1. Wow what a treat and you bet this is the classiest way of celebrating July 4th. The only ballet I've seen so far is "The Nutcracker" which is coincidentally also Tchaikovsky.

  2. How wonderful! Swan Lake is such a classic. I remember my mother taking me to watch a performance when I was little. Amazing. And the gentleman sounds like a catch - "come as your elegant self" - such sweet words!
    I like that Vogue list too - pale pink polish is an all-year-round classic. I also love that Valentino bag - I love my collection of handbags (Belen Echandia and Alexander Wang) but am in the market for a classic, something structured and grown-up.

  3. I love this post and the way you write so much, not to mention the dress!!! Style is eternal! Lovely and inspiring blog! I was wonderring if you would have time to check mine, possibly follow? Hope we keep in touch!

    Mary from http://teenfashiondiary.blogspot.com/

  4. Joy- Such a great way to spend July 4th. "The Nutcracker" is so special. I have fond memories of going to see it when I was little.

    Ammu- Swan Lake is such a classic. It's always really nice to see it. It's funny how so many years later I'm still in awe. Watching these performances when I was little are some of my favorite childhood memories. Yes, (smile) the gentleman is a keeper.

    I think that Vogue list is so good. I agree with you on the pale pink polish. There is one discontinued burgundy color from Chanel that I like for fall, but I generally stay with pale pink shades that are professional for work. That Valentino bag is gorgeous. The structure makes it feel grown up and sophisticated.

    Mary M.- Thank you for the kind words. I'm glad that you find the blog inspiring. That's great to hear. I will definitely take a look at your blog. I can't wait to see what you're writing about.

  5. It sounds like a lovely weekend - the kind that lets you start your week with a glow. Would love to see what you wore!

    I don't do manicures but I like a pedicure every now and then. I like Essie's "Ballet Slipper".

  6. Lin- Such a lovely weekend. You're so right, there's nothing like a great weekend to start your week off right.

    I need to get better about taking clothing shots.

    I love "Ballet Slipper!"

  7. Love the photo chosen here. I'm all for the "easy elegance" idea - lace dresses, be it black, white or cream, seem to embody this to me, as well as shift dresses.

    Swan Lake is absolutely breathtaking. I haven't seen a production yet but there are days where I go Youtube-binging for Swan Lake videos (sadly ballet was never a strong suit for me so I live vicariously through these videos and my college roommate who dances contemporary). My favorite part is hands down the pas de quatre - the quick movements and the music always draw my full attention.

  8. there are few things more true than that quote from vreeland.

    great post!

  9. ess elsie- I love this photo too. I'm really loving lace right now. I'll take a touch of lace in black, white or cream. Shift dresses are my go to easy elegance pieces- they work so well when you need to look polished

    The Pas de Quatre is so beautiful. It gets me everytime.

    Danica- That quote is so great. It always reminds me of how forward thinking Diana Vreeland was.

  10. "Come as your elegant self" my heart maybe melted. That's the sweetest thing. What a classy way to spend the 4th, although I would expect nothing less.

  11. I remember receiving tickets to see Oregon Ballet Theatre's production of Swan Lake as a birthday present and being absolutely enthralled. Having seen company members rehearse for weeks in the studio and being acquainted with them for years (I went to the school connected to the company), it was amazing seeing mere humans, people I looked up to but humans nonetheless, transformed into their roles. That, combined with basking in a dancer's impeccable technique that I've seen them tirelessly perfect over time is what I enjoy most about going to the ballet. I haven't been in quite some time now and your post makes me nostalgic for being both on stage and an audience member!

    That said, I agree with you about enjoying how the ballet gives people a reason to "show up." Even though it's rare for someone here to go all out when dressing for the ballet because I live in such a laid back city, it's still nice to be able to dress up and not feel awkward or out of place.

    Sorry for talking so long. Great post!

  12. I adore the ballet! There are not enough chances to get dressed up these days... Any chance of an outfit shot? :)

  13. Anonymous- It is very sweet. The 4th doesn't have to be an inelegant holiday;)

    Austere- What an amazing education. Very cool that you attended the school connected to Oregon Ballet Theatre. There are few things that tech disciplinelike ballet.

    PS- Don't apologize for talking to long. I love reading the comments.

    La Fille mal Gardée- You are so right- there are so few instances that call for getting dressed up these days. Which makes it so much fun when everyone does get dressed up.

    I need to get better about taking outfit shots and carrying my camera around with me. Hopefully I'll have an outfit shot featuring a designer I adore tonight.

    It's so nice people get dressed up for the ballet. It makes me happy. There just aren't enough opportunities to get dressed up.