Rachel Comey Steady Dress | Size 4
Birkenstock Birko-Flor Arizona Sandals
WHOA. I love this dress. I haven’t decided if I’m keeping it yet, but wow.
I have probably put it on half a dozen times since I picked it up on Friday, and now I’m sitting in it writing this post. I can’t take it off.
It does seem to run a little big – hence the size 4 – and it’s still quite large on me at the bust, but it fits the rest of my body beautifully and is really comfortable walking, sitting, standing, whatever, in. And yeah, I’d totally wear it just like this, with my white Birkenstocks. Or tennis shoes. No heels for me, except for an occasion, like perhaps our anniversary dinner in Charleston?
In person, it’s more of a red/pink stripe than a red/white stripe, which I like a lot. It’s also available in a brown/black stripe, which is also very pretty. But with my current foray into prints, I am more inclined to go big or go home, and brown/black would have been a very “safe” option for me. Turns out I really really love this red/pink stripe. Leo likes it too.
The Steady dress is long on me (I’m 5’3″), but I don’t think it overwhelms my frame at all, given the belted waist and the seaming all over the dress. It’s machine washable. And I like it without the belt too. The arm holes are open, so you catch a glimpse of my bra looking to the side, but that doesn’t bother me at all.
What I am concerned about it layering it, or “winterizing” it, since I’d like to get as much wear as possible out of it. On the other hand though, maybe this dress deserves to something I DON’T wear all the time? or with everything? Can’t it just be special?
I also got the Ace & Jig Quince dress over the weekend and I like that one a lot too (size small). Ideally I’d like to keep only one of the dresses, so I’ve got some decision-making to do. I’ll get some photos of the Quince dress up tomorrow, but one point against it is that it needs to be hemmed. Oh, and it’s strapless, so I’d need to get a strapless bra to wear with it. It can be worn with the sleeves up but it looks SO MUCH better strapless. Also, they don’t stay put. So…three strikes against it LOL.
gg mili says
Hello, Gretchen! The dress is beautiful! It seems like a brave step away from your usual look, and it suits you well! Color +, Style +. Enjoy your new summer addition! It is a happy one!
I love that dress! The open arm/pit would drive me bonkers though. I’m not sure about winterizing it – I’m sure where you live, you could get extended wear out of it without “winterizing”. A fitted white/cream turtleneck might be an option? [I’m thrown now that you say the lighter stripe is actually pink; that would probably be hard to match which is what I was trying to do….] But I think it’s ok to have a couple of nice dresses for when you & Leo go on vacation or date night or whatever 😉 That would be a gorgeous wedding guest dress too!
LOVE the dress but immediately my reaction was “it needs heels.” Maybe a clogged sandal or something uber-comfortable? Or even a wedge. I feel like the dress needs length so everyone can appreciate this amazing pattern!
Ooooooo!!!!! This is SO gorgeous! I love it ON you more than I did in the pic you linked to. It’s so much better than the Quince dress (Sorry ace & jig!). But why does it HAVE to be able to layer and do Fall/ Winter? This cute number is doing all sorts of special on its own…don’t force it to change! 😉
Some things are special enough to stand alone, and this is one of them.
Agreed, or if not heels then a really thin slide sandal. I love my birks, but sorry Grechen, I don’t think they complement this outfit. ( But obvs I’m not the one that is wearing it, and you don’t have to impress me)
Sorry, but I must be in the minority here. I think that the dress makes you look like a squat, stripped candy cane. I don’t find it flattering on your figure at all.
Disagree – love the Birks!
Of course, most people find my style off-kilter, so…
Grechen Reiter says
thank you gg 🙂
it makes me happy too…
Grechen Reiter says
yes, you’re right about winterizing it – there’s no way to really do that LOL and that’s okay. it can be a special summer dress!
still deciding whether to keep it or not…
Grechen Reiter says
you’re right, of course 🙂
over-thinking again, as usual. me, i mean. !!
Have to agree – not with the “candy cane” part, but the fit. This dress IS overwhelming on your frame; heels or no heels. You can do so much better than that.
Julia Riley says
Way harsh Tai!
You look beautiful and this dress is amazing, Grechen! I think the black bra and white sandals make it edgier in the best way. Definitely post pics if you wear it in Charleston.
You look fabulous, but I keep thinking: stairs? I would have to constantly keep one hand free to scoop up all the fabric. And what if I suddenly had to step backwards to get out of someone’s way? Me, I would step on the back and rip it or trip backwards or both. If you do keep it, I would NOT wear heels. That would make it just too fussy, and also increase the risk of stepping on fabric, front or back, lol.
I love this dress on you – the only thing I’d have to think twice about is the uneven hem, and that’s just a weird peeve of mine.
I disagree – love the top 3/4 in particular, the way the stripes flow, and the belt.
Also nothing about this says candy cane to me – more nautical if we need an association.
I love it. I love it with the birks. And I disagree with the candy cane comment. I don’t why people can’t be a little nicer.
I’m also in the nay camp here. This bold of a pattern and flowing fit would best be worn by a willowy woman. I think that it’s good to have divergent opinions on whether or not an outfit works well for Grechen. Even if the comment sounds “harsh” or isn’t “nicer” enough.
Grechen Reiter says
is it possible that grechen knows what works for grechen?? how can anyone else possibly know what works for me? they/you may know what is “conventionally flattering” on a person who looks like me, or you may know what you’d like to SEE on a person who looks like me, but pardon me, you do not have a clue what “works” for me.
Lisa Schmeiser says
This is true. You’ve been quite vocal, repeatedly, about how you feel no compulsion to dress in a conventionally flattering way.
It’s very evident from your blog content that one of your editorial focuses is to challenge the reader/viewer to examine why and how we, personally, value “flattering” as criteria for a piece of clothing.
This dress is a perfect example. It doesn’t really matter to you how you look in it — you’ve talked about how good it feels to move in the dress and how the stripes lift your spirits, and since those criteria matter to you … ¯\_(?)_/¯
We’re not the ones spending the money and we’re not the ones who have to spend your money or wear your clothes. If the dress works for you in all the ways that matter to you, then wear it in good health!
Me too! I think Rachel Comey would approve. 😉
Ahem…there’s a REAL person behind this blog…not a robot. Commenters should act like a human being if they’re going to post. (That doesn’t mean AGREE with everything, that means don’t be an a-hole in expressing your opinion!)
Glam AND machine washable?!? Love it
I continue to not know (or do I even care?) what conventionally flattering means, but I am always amazed how great you look in your pix, G, whether your own clothes or slowre. I find the RC dress dramatic and swooshy on you, as it should be. You look stunning. I’m sure even better in person, when one can fully appreciate the draping and movement. I think even someone who favours neutrals and loose cuts should have at least one piece like this, for those moments when one really wants to make everyone around them smile.
The only potential problem I find with the fit is that she still looks a bit overwhelmed with the dress, and it seems to be wearing her. Which is perfect for a model -she is showing off the dress quite well- but my one recommendation would be: symbolically own the dress! Do not model it, make it your own so we see you, and this fantastic dress as an extension of your style! Although yes, I do also think the dress needs a small wedge, and I would add a lightweight cropped sweater for colder situations
2nd all of this.
Grechen, a blog suggests and invitation of sharing opinions, some of them may differ from yours. Sometimes, because of your somewhat stream of consciousness style of writing, there’s perceived hesitation on your part about a particular item and invites suggestions from your readers. I noticed you are sensitive to other people’s opinions if they don’t match yours and I have always been hesitant to post. I am sensitive too, sometimes my friends just trash something i’m fond of, so i know how it feels. But with a blog, some resilience to negativity is a must. And nasty comments are never welcome.
I so agree with your comment here – except for the part about the small wedge and cropped sweater. Why give such good advice about making the dress her own, and extension of her style, yet tell her what she should accessorize it with? With that, I have a sister-in-law who is the queen of making styles of clothing her own and an extension of who she is. It is very inspiring, and has really helped me to own what I like wearing in spite of the fact that some people might not find things flattering on me, at all. She is a very petite in weight and only 5’2” tall, yet she will wear long maxi dresses that are big and drag for the most part on the floor. Now, someone might look at this and shake a finger at her, but damn it, she cares not one bit. She owns her style and flaunts it – she will accessorize her look with blue/purple/pink hair, hats, flowers in her hair, large earring, the works. What I’m saying is that she will draw even more attention to herself and her clothing. She is also fond of taking oversized jeans and making one huge folded cuff at the bottom. Someone might say the pants are overwhelming on her and make her legs look even shorter than they are. Again, she has no f’s to give. Her style is an extension of her quirkiness – she confidently wears it, enjoys it, and it shows. It’s fabulous.
Grechen seems to have a disproportionate amount of anxiety invested in her appearance, and can’t cope with being told that her stubby body doesn’t look good in certain outfits. Her little temper tantrum is proof that she only wants fawning fans who leave sycophantic comments. I also agree with the “perceived hesitation” that’s omnipresent on her blog. It comes across as insecurity. “Some resilience to negativity is a must,” but that doesn’t happen if the owner can only handle compliments.
I love the Marimekko striped shirt dress, so classic (Georgia O’Keefe had them) and flattering …. have you tried them?
Hey! Comparing a person to an object is NEVER okay. Whatever you think about a dress, objectifying the person wearing it is not cool. Sh*tty thing to do.
I just read through the comments, this dress is totally beautiful and you look lovely in it. Ultimately what matters more is how it makes you feel, and you told us in the post that you felt good in it. I read your blog to see pictures of cool clothes worn in interesting ways, and the fact that you are a similar height to me (and sometimes a similar weight) helps me to think about how I might look and feel in similar clothes. I don’t always have the same taste as you, but if I only wanted to look at stuff that was my taste I could just look in my own closet all day. Getting dressed every day is so weird because it is both very public and very private. It feels like a privilege to me that there are people who allow me to look into their closets, and by extension their lives, and verbalize their choices and thoughts about something as personal as getting dressed.
Love how so many negative comments are from “anonymous” people whom I’ve never seen comment on the blog before. Just a reminder, no one makes you read any blogs, it’s your own choice!
Please don’t stop posting outfits! I’ve only found you about two weeks ago and love your outfits and words! Also, as a woman of the same height and age I’ve gotten some great ideas that I can really wear. (Already ordered the ES Florence pants and some James Perse tees!)
Red dress looks great on you, as a fellow shorty I know big pattern can be hard to pull off. The dress looks to be thoughtfully construted so that it flatters, rather than overwhelm.
Those people that say such nasty things feel bad inside. I actually feel sorry for them.
I read this blog often and feel the need to speak up. Grechen, your introspective insights are so valuable to read, and I cherish them. You allow readers in to a very private part of your life, and if they don’t reflect the same thoughtful maturity back to you that you give to them through your blog posts, don’t hesitate to remove them.
I absolutely feel you should have the expectation to not be picked apart just because you opened up a part of your life—you should be treated as any woman should be treated—with thoughtful, kind consideration. I consider your blog a village of sorts, and come to it to read uplifting, insightful things…I don’t want this to become a place where we trash women, you included.
You only have things to be proud of in the way you open up and share both your heart and your beautiful human body in various clothes. There was a lot of undertones of nastiness in the comments section, but it’s so obviously about the people posting.
They have trouble seeing beauty, I guess. Don’t let it trouble you.
What I see on your blog is a very self-possessed, thoughtful, introspective, woman. You are a woman I look up to and hope to be like, looks included. I think you are so beyond adorable in everything! I literally just ordered the golden Nili Lotan pants tonight because they look so good on you! And I thought this dress was an absolute stunner on you.
I hope you are banned from commenting and I hope you demonstrate better behavior in your real life because this is unacceptable on so many levels.
Your behavior in this post is nasty and childish. How dare you speak to Grechen this way. You need to rethink how you talk to people. This is totally unacceptable.
Your comment reeks of misogyny. But you know that. It was intentional. Are you sitting at your computer with your MAGA cap on following Q updates on twitter and just got lost on the interwebs?
I noticed that, too, Jen. Me thinks it was a concerted effort from another site/message board to bring her down. SMH
Wow, I realize I’m late to this comment thread, but dang. Grechen said perfectly: “you may know what is “conventionally flattering” on a person who looks like me, or you may know what you’d like to SEE on a person who looks like me, but pardon me, you do not have a clue what “works” for me.”
I really couldn’t say it better. I question why people read this blog if they are conflating “what works for” with “what is conventionally flattering.”
Fwiw I think the dress is exciting, and I think you look great.
Whoa can’t believe the feedback you got on this dress. F em all. Love your style and this dress totally stood out to me – my style is more black/Blue neutral also and you made this vibrant red stripey dress look so fab and glam but wearable that I seriously considered it for myself. Love the Birks too with it.