“It Really Was Raining”

For my day job, I do more writing, which includes interviewing interesting people. Like models. You know, those gorgeous sirens you see on the cover of magazines and towering billboards.

They often tell me how they always look so immaculate, as well as what shooting for those covers are really like. It usually involves dipping their near-nude figures in an ice cold beach just when the sun rises for the best lighting and wearing sweat-inducing armor for couture hours on end.

If we could all look like this 1950s model in the rain.
If we could all look like this 1950s model in the rain.

I would always think to myself, Well surely it can’t be that bad. Just look at you. The world is your giant oyster and it offers all the pearls you want.

Well, I got a taste of it. Somewhat.

While visiting South Street Seaport one semi-gloomy (and unusually chilly) Saturday during the summer season, I was compelled to be photographed to remember the time I went all the way downtown. Then, it started to rain. Jordan suggested to use the umbrella as a prop. This was the result.

Photo by Jordan Race
Photo by Jordan Race

But reader, it really was raining. Fat, ice cold droplets of water were smacking my face, the wind was blowing each minute with full vengeance, and my hair provided unforgiving whiplashes. But nope. I was going to get my picture. I guess this is what real models go through.

Photo by Jordan Race
Photo by Jordan Race

My dress is a vintage 1970s bohemian pink floral maxi from the West Village. The label is unknown, but I love how easy-breezy it is for the summer. The gown makes me feel as if I’m ready to stroll through the streets of Tuscany. I added a wide leather corselet belt to accentuate my waist and avoid that dreaded pajama feel.

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You can get a similar look: ’90s grunge pink maxi for $34.50, a soft rayon maxi for $39, a 1970s butterfly sleeve non-floral pink maxi for $40, or a more tannish floral maxi for $48. If you’re looking to splurge, I really like this 1970s-inspired coral maxi for $98 or this 1930s French gown from Paris for $148.25. When shopping from Etsy, always make sure to note the measurements provided on any listing and don’t hesitate to reach out to the vendors with any sizing concerns you may have. I always do.

Photo by Jordan Race
Photo by Jordan Race

Even in the rain, I let my hair down (literally). But I must tell you, those Goody Spin Pins are a must-have for a quick bun. They’re less than $10.

Photo by Jordan Race
Photo by Jordan Race

And smiled, wearing Revlon’s pinky-red “Cherries in the Snow” creme lipstick. It’s also less than $10.

But in the end, there were cocktails to be found at Fresh Salt. I had the cup of rosé while Jordan sipped on a bourbon cocktail. Both were divine.

Drinks at Fresh Salt.
Drinks at Fresh Salt.

I’m certainly not a model. But at least I can now say I played one. In the rain. It was messy. But worth it. Now I can go back to eating my burger.

The end.
The end.

The Fitting Room Chronicles: So I’m Going to Need a New Bra for This

Summer is not quite here yet in New York City, but at a smoldering 85 degrees, we’re getting a taste of it.

Despite the sweat-inducing temperatures, I continued on with my weekly ritual of visiting my beloved thrift store. Unlike a typical clothing boutique, you just never know what surprises await you.

Normally I find so much treasure, I struggle to carry pounds of clothes on top of my 5’2″ frame as I tip-toe to the fitting room. This weekend, my finds were quite minimal, but that’s okay. My wallet is thankful.

Find #1

According to the tag on this silk black dress, it comes all the way from Paris. While it hugged my curves in all of the right places – and I can’t ever resist a black outfit – the side zipper was completely broken. I would consider a piece like this a “project,” which means that, if I were to purchase it, I would collaborate with my tailor on tweaking it to create a more custom fit, including replacing the zipper. While I’m not against a project, the efforts would have been costly in this case. The dress alone was 40 dollars, and with any additional changes, we’re looking at a price tag worth over 50 bucks. In this case, I didn’t think it was worth the splurge, so I let it go.

Posing with an open (and broken) zipper.
Posing with an open (and broken) zipper.

Find #2

Ever fell madly in love at first sight? I did. This hip-hugging floral Tracy Reese dress looked like a dream on the hanger. Her dresses are worth over 300 dollars, but I could have taken this home for a mere 23 dollars. Sadly, my Dominican butt was like nope. Sure, I was able to zip it all the way up, but I also had to take multiple quick breaths just to let oxygen past through my body. And sitting? Ha! That’s just for amateurs.

Not breathing can look quite glamorous for five secondsdeargodwhenwillthisend?!
Not breathing can look quite glamorous for five secondsdeargodwhenwillthisend?!

Lucy can relate.

When a piece runs large you can easily work around it, but too small? Ugh is the answer.

Find #3

Normally I’m very against all things strapless. Being well endowed on top, I need support or my back will punish me with unforgiving aches. And let’s be real, when was the last time you looked forward to wearing a strapless bra? But sometimes, sacrifices should be made. Especially with a discovery like this.

We have a winner!
We have a winner!

While I was feeling down about the previous dress that wouldn’t fit, this one was two sizes smaller and works great. Okay sure, it’s a vintage size, but work with me people! The tag says it’s by Beginnings, which is/was based in New York. I tried researching it, but nothing seems to be available. The price tag? A lovely 14.

I can’t wait to rock this gown sooner than later. Unfortunately, I will need to buy a strapless bra.

Daphne gets it.
Daphne gets it.

I will say this dress made me get over the Tracy Reese outfit. It’s like that moment when you’re about to get back with an ex, only to find out there’s someone way better waiting for you and ready to take you out. Don’t ask me how I know this.

In short? Today was a good day: for myself and my wallet.