As I was typing this post title, Belinda Carlisle's "Mad About You" began playing in my head. And I thought, "Not too off the mark to hum an 80s tune when singing the praises of retro-style dresses." Even if the "retro" in question has at least one pump planted firmly in 1950.
I didn't happen upon these feisty frocks in a big box store. I got them from Modcloth, a web site specializing in vintage-inspired fashion. The burgeoning business is owned by high school sweethearts Susan Gregg Koger and Eric Koger (aw!), and it began as a way for Susan to unload her ever-growing collection of vintage treasures. Clearly, I'm hooked, having purchased these lucky seven (and, if I may add, marvelously monikered) dresses in recent months. I haven't worn any of them yet (I'm saving most of them for my honeymoon this summer), but I can say this: there's something about a Modcloth dress. When you put one on, you feel like you're about to take part in an exquisite and delicious slice of theater. As in, when you walk down the street, cartoon birds will appear and hearts will explode and strangers will smile and tip their hats.
That's not to say that these confections can't be a little costly (although Modcloth does run some pretty stellar sales). But they're worth it, and adding them to your wardrobe will give you the kind of sartorial satisfaction that just can't be found in a department store. No disrespect, by the way, to department stores, as they are the frugal fashionista's best friend. But their brand of retail rhapsody is more of the look-at-all-the-cool-components-I-got-for-one-low-price variety; now I can go home and style something awesome, whereas the Modcloth wow factor hinges on a knee-jerk reaction of, now, that's something stunning; let me not muck it up with too many other pieces.
And to think some say shopping is mindless.