Monday, April 19, 2010

Navy is my black.

Anyone who knows me, knows I'm obsessed with navy blue. To me it exemplifies taste, restraint and refinement like nothing else. Plus, I look horrible in black. Navy is my black. It's also my white, my gray, my casual, my dressy, my pick-me-up, my calm-me-down... you get the idea. I suppose this near worship of navy began in grade school, when I was forced to wear an almost acidic, bright scarlet cardigan with my otherwise attactive uniform. I was painfully jealous of the upper grade girls, traipsing around in their navy blue sweaters, the inky blue hiding the cardigan's cheap acrylic. 


(Excuse me while I sulk down bad memory lane.) I'll never forget sullenly driving to the uniform shop somewhere deep in the valley to pick out my new garb. I practically squealed with delight when I saw my new school's name perched atop a rack of nautically inspired uniforms, complete with middy blouses and red sailors' ties! My mom shot me a knowing smile that said, "See, this won't be so bad." I was trying not to let on just how pleased I was as we stood at the counter, my new look piled high. Then evil struck. The clerk informed us that the navy sweaters, and navy Friday service blazers, were for "upper grades only." Sigh, I thought. What will I have to wear, some babyish navy pullover? Suddenly, the woman returned with the most hideous red sweater ever weaved. It may have actually been molded. I'd been able to overlook the crunchy, scratchiness of my navy sweater. But somehow in the junior "scarlet" version the cardigan's plastic-ness was all the more apparent, even offensive. I winced, then felt a burning in my throat and the dreaded sting of tears filling my eyes. Honestly, this was the sweater I was being forced to wear for the next five years?? Wasn't it enough that I was being torn from all my public school friends and the second-grade boyfriend I swore I was meant to marry? Or that I had just been mercilessly teased with an ensemble that I was actually quite thrilled to don? This sweater not only ruined an otherwise perfect uniform, it ruined my chances of any real happiness, or of ever being warm (I'd rather freeze, thank you very much) for the next five years. So, I guess it's no wonder wearing navy makes me feel the way it does. Like the day I hit 7th grade, I put it on and I feel warm, cool and happy all at once. Now, if you've stayed with me this long, you deserve a treat. And here it is, compliments of my Polyvore friend Andley. Check out these lovely navy ensembles...
I could live in this outfit. Who needs kids? Paul Smith jacket $1,345.;
Camilla & Marc skirt $260, Louis Vuitton "Melrose" handbag,

I'd be so ladylike in this Hobbs Christie jacket, $260,, and Dolce and Gabbana shoes, $660,

People would sure think I was getting work done in this Marc Jacobs cashmere cardigan, $320;
Tibi skirt, $240, both at; handbag and bangles, Kate Spade,

Images: Navy blazer at top, forgotten (I'm so sorry! I know you're on my blogroll, so please email me and I will credit you for this incredibly inspirational photo), all other images from Andley at Polyvore and sites where noted.


  1. Alexandra.... I love navy blue and also French blue ... you know that inky navy that is so rich. I have a Ralph Lauren blazer with the beautiful silver RL crest on the pocket which I love wearing with jeans and a crisp white shirt. Navy looks fabulous with everything..pale pink, green, taupe, white ...
    So lovely to to see you again... come and visit!
    Best wishes

  2. Can we just put on that Kate Spade dress and floppy white hat and take a ride on a yacht ? Please.....

  3. I love your story and can totally feel your pain.
    It's adorable that your taste and style was so strong at such a young age. What doesn't kill you makes you better... which is exactly what happened. Thanks for the trip down memory lane, I really enjoyed it :)
    You would look amazing in any of those ensembles!

  4. This was executed so perfectly! Each outfit could have been in an editorial! Love that Marc Jacobs dress, and that little umbrella pendant! Good thing my girls' uniforms are navy cardis and blazers! :)

  5. I HEART Navy too! In fact, some day I wish to have a navy bedroom. It's a great color, goes with everything!

  6. I love the navy blue mixed with red. It looks so classic.

  7. I am so with you - I'm a navy girl through nd through! KG

  8. Growing up sailing with my Dad, brothers and cousins, you can imagine that navy is dear to my heart as well. Lovely choices and a walk down memory lane! (I had uniform woes too!)

  9. I loved this post! You had me at the title! My hair is really dark so black can be very severe for me but navy is always perfect. Loved your story:)

    Hope you're having a great weekend!


  10. Just wanted to let you know I tagged you in a couple of fun games!!!

  11. these are gorgeous! each an every one... if it ever stops snowing here in Calgary, I look forward to wearing something delightful and springy like these lovely little numbers.xo

  12. I'm loving all your navy picks, especially the Marc Jacobs dress. Great outfits!



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