Be Inspired, Not a Copycat – Why I Choose Grace Kelly Over Ke$ha

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If I could choose another decade to live in, it would be the 1950s for so many reasons. Cheery positive music, bright colours, bubbly cars and high-waisted circle skirts – sign me up! It’s odd how much changes from decade to decade. It makes me kind of sad to think that we’ll be remembered as the Ugg generation, the Facebook time period, and the Honey Boo Boo/Toddlers in Tiaras/Hangover watchers. What happened to the days of elegance and class and appreciating what we have? Yes, the 1950s were much simpler, but that also means they were more positive and gentle, and I’d trade this drugged-up, antisocial age for some good, clean, old fashioned fun. And don’t even get me started on the media back then…Old Hollywood, yes please! I’m a sucker for that elegant, high-class society stuff.

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This mega post features my favourite summer look, which takes us right back to the 1950s with a gorgeous circle skirt halter dress by Pam Chorley, a Toronto designer whose store I’ve been obsessed with since I was little. I always used to say that one day I would have a closet full of dresses and would be that girl who wears dresses and high heels on a daily basis. Well now I am! Dreams do come true(?) :P These heels are by Stuart Weitzman (the same ones featured in this floral post from spring), and a vintage headpiece from a prophouse sale in downtown TO! That’s another thing I love about Toronto. In addition to all the wonderful shops like Kate Spade and Holt Renfrew that you can find in Yorkville, there are so many hidden sales and events and things you can find if you’re in the know. I’ve lived here all my life and still find it so charming with so many new things to discover!

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I love this crazy monster art installation! So unique.

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How cute is this puppy? I just want to squeeze his happy little face! XD

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A nice young man in the flower shop posed for a picture with me!

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Even though it’s 2013, I try to find ways to inject that fun 1950s spirit into my life. In this era we’re losing individuality. People are morphing into the same person because we’re all tapped into the same social networks and idolizing the same stars. Not every girl wants to be Ke$ha, but when every singer autotunes their voice to sound the same, all our “role models” end up being clones of one another, and we only have one cookie cutout to model ourselves after. That’s why I choose the stars of old as my inspirations. Princess Grace, Audrey Hepburn, Marilyn Monroe – those are the women I admire, not trashy Ke$ha and Beyonce.

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In the same token, I’m sure that Grace, Audrey and Marilyn never dreamed of working with computers or programming. And that’s why I let myself be inspired, but never copy. Choose your role models carefully, and emulate them in whatever way suits you best.

So on that note, I leave you with two questions: Who inspires you, and how do you choose to inject that inspiration into the way you live your life?

Drop me a comment, I’d love to hear from you. :)

~Sage

OUTFIT:
dress: Pam Chorley
shoes: Stuart Weitzman
sunglasses: Guess
headpiece: vintage
denim jacket: vintage

16 thoughts on “Be Inspired, Not a Copycat – Why I Choose Grace Kelly Over Ke$ha

  1. Hello there I am so happy I found your weblog, I really found you by accident,
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  2. Hey girl,

    Found out about your blog through the Lucky community and so glad I did. I love how in describing your blog you say you’re out to debunk the negative stereotypes surrounding techie girls in the industry.

    :)

  3. Hi Sage!

    I found your blog from the Lucky community. Nice to find another Canadian blogger! :) I don’t think a single person in fashion inspires me but I generally like a more polished, classy look. Something that I wouldn’t be embarrassed to show my kids one day. If you know the store Femme de Carriere, THAT was my ideal as a kid. I wanted to be a powerful businesswoman who wore really stylish suits…and now I am! (Well, not sure about the powerful businesswoman…but I do wear stylish suits!)

    http://www.allsheneedstoknow.blogspot.com

    1. Hey Joy! Your blog is great, can’t wait to see more! I used to have the stylish business woman dream too, and that slowly morphed into a love of dressing nicely all around. I bought my first business suit in Grade 8 (I know right?) and have had it fixed up so it fits me now. In totally different ways, of course, haha. Anyways thanks for the comment, and nice to meet you! :)

  4. I am glad you also feel the same way about the 50s! Love the outfit! I guess to answer your question(s), I’m inspired by all pre-90s fashion haha. Oh and movies from any year, and especially music from 70-80s. I don’t think there is anyone in particular who I’m inspired by. However I am still a huge fan of a lot of actors/actresses/musicians. Currently I am working on removing the shoulder pads from two dresses that my mom gave to me. One is from the 70s that she made herself; and the other is from the 80s but it looks like it could be an old “Vogue Paris Original” pattern or something. We’ll see how this goes…

  5. Firstly, your outfit is WONDERFUL. I love the style, the color, the pride with which you wear it, everything!

    To build off of Jen’s comment, the “individuality” argument isn’t any truer now than it is then. The 50’s/60’s was a solidification of the universal “American Dream” with the same dress patterns, the same houses, the husbands with the same jobs, the 2.5 kids, and the house pet. There were entire communities based on, marketing, and profiting from the ideals of conformity (Levittown, anyone?). While I completely see the stark contrast between 50’s women and the women of the new era, I’d say that we haven’t quite found a way to assert our individuality while breaking all social norms, past and present. “Promoting sluttiness” isn’t actually a thing. What is a slut? A woman who asserts her sexuality in the same way men have for hundreds of years without reproach? What does “trashy” mean? Baring one’s skin for no one’s pleasure but her own? While I may not agree with the messages being sent out today, as a teen, I can definitely attest to the fact that MANY people realize the driving force in today’s society is not the semblance of grace, but money. We all know (or should, if we’ve done our research) that Ke$ha is a highly educated, intelligent, talented woman. And we all understand that the sells horrid music purely for entertainment purposes. And it’s only entertaining because the partying and the drinking and the sex were around LONG before these artists were born. Why do we admire these women? Because they are quintessential sex symbols? Because they were talented actresses? Because one of them helped the disadvantaged, one of them helped emerging artists, and one of then had personal troubles?

    We are not the only ones who look up to them. But they were not all perfect all the time, and the only difference between their imperfections and those of today’s artists are that the latter’s dirty laundry are aired out, not by their own doing, but by society’s. If Marilyn had the misfortune of being born into our era, she would have been torn to shreds for her height, size, men, drugs, etc., and more so if she even tried to make a comment about self love while doing drugs.

    I guess what I’m trying to get at without going on a feminist rant is that everyone is an individual, and everyone is special, but not for the reason addressed here, namely, who they like or dislike. We are hardwired to categorize. You are undoubtedly very special, but are not more special than anybody else because of your views or even actions. I honestly believe that we need to stop idolizing ANYONE. These women were always and ill forever be our equals. They are someone we should look at and think “I have a skill set, and I can be a success” rather than “Look how great they were ugh I wish more women were like that.” Liking these women is not unique to you, and that doesn’t tell us anything about who you are as a person. But the fact that your dress has the high shine dissimilar to traditional dresses of that era but keeps the cut while lifting the hem, and is one simple, bright, almost unnatural color, says a lot more about your taste for simplicity, your vibrant personality, and your love of personal freedom than proclaiming your adulation of Grace Kelly ever will.

    ♥, Khadijat

    1. I appreciate your comment and can see why you think that way. Without disagreeing, I’ll say that we are different types of feminists. As I said to Jen, I didn’t explain myself thoroughly enough to go up against a detailed feminist argument such as the one you’ve just given me, haha.

  6. I love your dress. It’s a fabulous colour and looks great on you.

    I loathe the terms classy and trashy in refrence to other people or the things they wear. The words tend be used in an anti-women, classist manner that is a real turn off for this feminist. The 50’s wasn’t all sunshine and roses either and people weren’t any more “individual” then they are now.

    1. I don’t use them in reference to the clothes, but the behavior. I consider Ke$ha trashy because she promotes partying, drinking and being slutty by sleeping around. I guess in a post about an outfit I should have made that clearer; I try to put meaningful ideas an outfit posts into one, but I’ll be careful to clear that up next time. :)

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