In my neck of the woods, the beginning of a school year is the harbinger of the “black tie season.”  In a matter of weeks, my calendar will start to fill with school fundraisers, corporate dinners and holiday dances, and I will inevitably find myself pining away for a personal assistant to manage the RSVPs, purchase and wrap the hostess gifts, and of course babysit the girls for free while I mingle and mashed potato (I said I had good shoes, not good dance moves).

My go-to outfit for all is an LBD.  The same LBD, in fact, that I have had since my ten-year high school reunion.  Talk about motivation to maintain your weight!  Way back then I splurged (whole-paycheck kind of splurged), on a very high end “runway” item, and to this day, I do not regret a single penny spent.  This little number has seen me through rehearsal dinners and anniversary dates, awards ceremonies and weddings, with equal amounts of class and lovely and yes, just a hint of fun.  It hangs in my closet and I joke with my girls it is my “storyteller” dress, because it has been witness to and participant in enough moments to underwrite a novella.  Some of the stories are happy, like the time I told my family I was pregnant with my first child.  And some of the stories are sad, like the time my dear friend learned mid-dinner-dance her mother had passed away.  And some of the stories are funny, like the time I lost my shoe in the Museum of Science and Industry while dancing – never to be found!  But all of the LBD stories remind me that life is made up of moments, and our best foot forward is to handle each moment “as if the dress itself,” with equal amounts of class and lovely and yes, a hint (or more!) of fun.

But after so many events in the same LBD, how best to mix it up?   Accessories, of course!  Sometimes I go with a simple, understated stud earring and pretty bangle, and sometimes I pull out chandelier earrings in an unexpected color.  And sometimes I go with a sentimental favorite (I have a fabulous pair of drop earrings in a lovely shade of green that once graced the lobes of my grandmother).  Regardless, now is a great time to plan ahead.  I often turn to Net-a-Porter for inspiration, and their “Shop by Occasion” section is a fun place to start.

And don’t you worry ’bout me, dear friend, I’ll also hit Zappos up for a complete pair of heels.  🙂

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