Girl about Town (getting ready)

What a glorious evening! This was probably the highest profile “do” i’ve been out to yet: The Internet Service Provider Association’s (ISPA) annual awards ceremony – and i was up on stage to hand out the award for internet villain of the year.

(It went to Lord Mandelson for his role in pushing the Digital Economy Act – and judging by audience reaction, he was a much-deserving winner).

First off was panic. And irony. Last time i came here, i had just invested in the whole formal dinner jacket attire for men. After all, as andrea said, i do some formal events, and i can always use the suit.

Oh dear! I tried it on yesterday for a laugh. Apart from hating it, it is now about four sizes too big. So: anyone want a size very large suit, worn once, let me know…otherwise its going on e-bay.

But panic: i have a lovely skirt – well andrea has a lovely black and silver-patterned Monsoon skirt, which is about the right length for me, and i have been getting most wear out of it lately. I have a blouse which is formal but more work than evening: and a few nice bits of jewellery.

Not good enough! Since the event was in the Marriott, Grosvenor Square (just off Oxford St) I had this mad idea that i could dash into Selfridges and pick up something light and silky off the peg. Not a good idea!

First off is the continuing tyranny of size. Most of the stuff i love is sold in size 16 or below. Please, please, Jane Norman: start up a line for the larger woman.

FFS! I’m a size 20 top, but i’m not overweight: just tall and broad-backed. (I am also now hovering down to a size 12 waist, which makes buying any fitted dress a nightmare).

Second was the price. My fault really. Even with the sales – and there were some very good offers – i guess wandering Selfridges’ formal wear section in a hurry is not a good idea. I stroked an absolutely gorgeous silk top in Jaeger…and blanched at the £150 price tag attached.

I was desperate…but not that desperate!

So in the end, i went to the Ball, dressed up – but not as dressed as i’d like. The first thing i saw were so many women in so many beautiful, couture dresses. I was so jealous – and not a little intimidated.

Interestingly, though, not a smidgeon of embarrassment about being transgendered: just the normal (?) female eying up of what everyone else was wearing.

Panic, panic panic! A dash to the loo to re-arrange hair and stuff. Note to self: speed-dry nail varnish is not all its cracked up to be. It gunks! And never, ever try and put on a necklace two hours after doing your nails! Grrrrrr…. Ruined!

The lesson, i guess, is patience and find time to do nails properly.

Slowly calming: i wasn’t the best-dressed girl there. But i wasn’t the worst, either. I walked into the dining room, past several hundred curious industry bodies, head high, very very proud.



3 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    kath said,

    I don’t know if it’s your style but have you tried Long Tall Sally? (Clothes really aren’t my thing – I know just enough to feel badly dressed on formal occasions.)

    Glad you had a great time.

    • 2

      janefae said,

      ye-es…I am a frequent visitor to Long Tall Sally…and they do have some lovely stuff.

      But….as far as fashion goes, they are distinctly middle brow. Not bad, but if i want something truly special, i think the options are either get it made…or hunt it down in the mainstream.

      that works, mostly, for skirts. Tis just the top that is problematic.

      Learning to sew is definitely on the agenda…with the aim of ripping off what i like when i see it.


  2. 3

    spirifer said,

    FFS – I have a repository of clothes here, if you’re stuck. Not necessarily what you want for any occasion, but gissa ring, you silly mare!

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