I love polkadots. Don't ask me why, because I have no idea, I just do. I think they're classy but still fun, and add a bit of character to an otherwise average look. In this case: a sleeved black a-line dress. It just wouldn't be the same without the polkadots :)
Also, it has a bit of a 60s vibe, which makes the hat and bright red purse a must! I don't think I had my red converse yet at this point, so I'm obviously not wearing them, but they would go well with this outfit too, and make it that much more comfortable for a day of shopping our being out on the town with friends (not that I would know being the largely friendless introvert that I am...)
About the Look
From the top down: I love this hat. It's a summer staple for me and goes with pretty much anything. The brim isn't quite as wide as I would like, but it's also not so small that it doesn't give off that classic Audrey Hepburn vibe (not that I look anything like her). You also can't beat the price; I got it for about $12 at either Burlington or Ross (I probably mentioned this hat in an earlier post, so you can look back if you're that interested), which makes it a very lucky find since neither of those stores restocks sold-out styles (at least, not that I've noticed).
The dress is another lucky find, this one from Ross. It was $15 and fits perfectly, though the belt it came with is too narrow for my taste. I have since replaced it with a 3" black buckle belt that came in a 3 color pack from Amazon for $15. I'm also wearing a white crinoline, though you can't tell because I'm sitting down, which gives the heavy spandex skirt a really nice shape. White works well because of the polkadots, but I would be just as happy wearing a black or even red crinoline instead. As it stands, I only have white right now, so white it is. I got my crinoline on Amazon for $13 about five years ago, so they're a bit more expensive now, but if you like a-line or circle dresses, they really are a good investment.
The purse is from...probably Ross? I also tend to justify paying more for purses, especially if they're good quality, because I know I'll be able to use them for a long time, even if I lose (Ha!) or gain weight. I'm especially lenient if the color of the purse is one I have been looking for for a while. Add in practicality, and there's no way I won't slap down the cash, as the saying goes. In this case, this red purse checked all my boxes and then some, so I was okay with paying the $35 asking price.
My shoes are $45 white strappy sandal pumps from DSW. I normally wouldn't pay that much for sandals or pumps, but I was in Las Vegas for a cocktail event and somehow forgot my dress shoes. I ended up running out and searching five different stores in a panic before I found these and swiped my card without hesitation. Looking back, I'm glad I have them since I wear them all the time, but I still wish I could have paid a little less for them.
Shopping hint: if you wait until the new season turn-over, you can usually find all the off-season shoes you could imagine at half-the-price or better, but you also run the risk of them being sold out of the good stuff. It's honestly a crapshoot.