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.