Sunday, June 22, 2014

'80s Career Woman, Jessica Fletcher, and the Scarf-Ruffle Thing

When I put this outfit together, I felt it was one of my more contemporary efforts -- relative to the more vintage looks I usually wear. 

For one thing, it has more modern proportions: looser top, with skinny jeans... 

... and petite Oxfords.

It was a bonus that my shirt coordinated well with our blueberry patch.

Shoes: Aldo; Jeans: Reitman's; Blouse: Everly; Sunglasses: from a street vendor; Right hand ring: Effy; Earrings and Trifari brooch: vintage; Unbelievably perfect bespoke engagement ring: Britton Diamonds
I felt that my outfit was very grown-up and sophisticated.

Chic even.

Angela Lansbury as Jessica Fletcher in Murder She Wrote
So it may come as a surprise to you that my main inspiration for my outfit was none other than the not so contemporary Jessica Fletcher of Murder She Wrote.

I thought the way I wore this Trifari brooch was particularly inspired and I loved the way it coordinated so well with my right hand ring and my engagement ring, about which I am still completely and totally over the moon. 

But I was sure the idea was Jessica's, not mine.

More Angela as Jessica -- in scarf ruffle things
I could find no photographic evidence of this, though. Did I only imagine I'd seen her do it too?

No matter. The point is that, though my look was "modern," it was also quite '80s.  

Lily Tomlin, Dolly Parton, and Jane Fonda in the very good, very funny, very feminist movie, 9 to 5. (God, how I want Tomlin's skirt!)
In the early '80s, the "scarf ruffle thing," as it's called in Jane Wagner's play, Search for Signs, was de rigueur for the new breed of career woman.

I think it was the "feminine" answer to the tie.

Joan Collins in Dynasty
Every powerful woman wore one, from Joan Collins ...

Dustin Hoffman in the very funny and very feminist Tootsie
... to Tootsie (actually Dustin Hoffman in drag) ...

Working Girl, also very funny and very feminist
... to the cast of Working Girl.

Of course, I've always have the '80s "big hair thing covered, no problem.

(I've already mentioned to you that my hair seems to change colour depending on the light. Today it was cooperating still further by looking like I'd given it a maroon-ish henna treatment, a la the later '80s.)

And I'm not afraid of the "statement earring."

Diane Keaton in Baby Boom
So I can look like an '80s career woman, right? They could have it all, right? Love, family, career -- all. No problem!

Jane Fonda in 9 to 5
Thus the harried look.

I'm good at that one. Beau said, "Give me a not-in-pain look." This was the best I could do. My back pain's been even worse than usual for a long time now.

But let's get another look at Jane Fonda's glasses in a happier moment, shall we?

Do they remind you of anything or anyone?

I'll give you another hint.

You guessed it: Jessica Fletcher herself! I was trying to fill some mighty big footprints here, metaphorically speaking.

That's not so very easy when simply walking is causing problems. Balancing on these rocks for these photos was almost too much for my back. Thus my holding on to the tree for safe measure. 

I know I've gained some weight in the past few months, since I've been even less able to exercise than usual. Mostly, I'm happy with the larger bossoms (isn't that a funny, archaic word?) that come with my weight gain, but they are causing me some wardrobe... issues.

So, what with my worsened back and my slightly transparent top revealing my new D-cup (yes, D-cup!!) bra, I was going for a more casual '80s look -- say, the '80s career woman in jeans, on a weekend getaway to the country.

Heather Locklear, baby. Yes, I had a crush on her when I was about twelve.
And, yes, my skinny jeans were nice and '80s too. Combined with itty-bitty, lace-up shoes, they spell weekend in the country, right?

In my case, the country is my backyard in the middle of the city but I like it just fine.

It's just so pretty.

Perfect for a career woman on a break.

(Special guest appearances from Bobby, the black cat, and Milo, the orange cat.)

(If you'd like to see more of Jessica Fletcher: Fashion Plate, check out my Pinterest page all about her fashion sense -- and be sure to read my commentary.)

(I'm linking this up to Visible Mondays at Not Dead Yet and Share In Style at Mis Papelicos.)


  1. Loving the flowers in your garden. You look pretty amongst them in your Jessica Fletcher moment! Now I know what you meant about scarf thingy. I do have a little resemblance to this post! Lovely to see your cats enjoying themselves in the shrubbery:-)

    1. My old kitty, Bobby, was an indoor cat for many years. He's loving this yard. I feel comfortable letting him out here because it's entirely fenced; he's 18 so I don't want him wandering too far.

      I think you'd really like the play I reference here, the one that calls those bows "scarf-ruffle things": Search for Signs of Intelligent Life in the Universe, written by Jane Wagner and performed by her wife, Lily Tomlin. You can get it on DVD.

  2. Love your photos! I left a comment on another post but not sure how I found that one first. You're so creative!

    1. Thanks. As a writer with an artist father, I never really thought of myself as creative till I realized that I just have different ways of expressing my creativity.

  3. Such a lovely blouse, Charlotte! Your hair coordinate in a spooky way here. It was fun to see all the old movies moments too! xxx

    1. Isn't that weird about my hair. When I lived in the very cold Montreal, my hair often took on that hue in the winter.

  4. Oh, the nostalgia... Having been young in the 80s I remember these styles... I had the big glasses + wild, big hair back then. In my case seeing my hair in the mirror every morning makes me think briefly the 80s are back... I like your modern reinterpretation of the pussy bow look, and the jewellery is fabulous.

  5. You are soo cute! I love your wonderful colorful blouse, fits perfect to your gorgeous hair. The pattern looks like Missoni :)
    What a beautiful view at your images.. thanks a lot for sharing :)


  6. Those glasses are everything!
    Welcome to the D+ club. When you start gaining weight cleavage is your friend. The lower the neckline, the thinner you look ;-)


    1. That's hilarious, Alicia! I shall keep it in mind. When I got my new bras, I said to the fitter, "I wonder if I should have a push up bra."

      "You don't need one," she said.

      My reply: "I know. That's the point! Wouldn't it be fun?"