OOTD: Emerald Cut
May 24, 2012, 10:05 am
Filed under: anthropologie, dresses, ootd


Okay, while my foot is still on the mend, how about a blast from the past OOTD?  This is what I wore to a nice dinner on St. Patrick’s Day, although I didn’t actually get around to posting in March because I think I had greened-myself out by that point :)  This was about the third occasion I’d actually worn my Anthropologie Emerald Cut Dress, and sadly probably my last!  Sigh, it makes me so unhappy to realize that I can no longer wear some of the items in my closet, but this is definitely one of them.  I just cannot put on dresses this short anymore without feeling extremely self-conscious and antsy!  Possibly I could rescue this one with a slip or crinoline, but I ended up giving this to my mother afterwards, who, being a few inches shorter than me, looked perfectly beautiful and appropriate in it.  I’m happy at least that I get to pass the dress on to her, but hrmph, it’s never fun to realize that you’re getting old!  When I bought this dress 2 1/2 years ago it seemed perfectly fine, but I’m conscious these days that I’m edging ever closer to 30 and mid-thigh hemlines just don’t seem right now.  I wish I had appreciated and worn it more in that magical interim of youthful appropriateness :)

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30 Comments so far
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I am 5’10″ and in my 40′s. I use to wear short dresses in my 20′s but I just can’t wear them now. Unfortunately I find that most of Anthro’s dresses are entirely too short on me. I wish Anthro would consider making tall sizes. Surely, you and I can’t be the only ones who would want to buy tall sizes.

Comment by Lisa

Ah, I’m glad someone else can relate! I have a hard time finding the right length for a lot of Anthropologie dresses too. Either they are ridiculously short (and I end up sizing up for length and then getting the waist tailored), or they’re actually somehow too long (I’m looking at you Traced Twirls Dress and all your ilk! And most recently the Spirea Shirtdress…).

Explains why I have bought all of three dresses from Anthropologie this year (and one of them is the Unconditional Osier, which I ALSO thought was a little hoochie on me and I have to wear an extra slip with…).

Comment by goldenmeans

Cute outfit! I totally agree about issues with dress lengths. I’m 5’5, so an average height, but it’s so often I have to pass up dresses because they are too short (for me, mid-thigh is an absolute no-go). I haven’t had too much trouble with Anthro, although I can think of at least 2 recent dresses that really could have used an extra couple of in inches of length (Embossed Basket Dress and Fluttering Flora). For me the worst culprit is J. Crew and their casual dresses – I particularly remember last summer where they had a number of cute, well made sundresses but they were ridiculously short. I actually bought one dress from them, don’t remember the name but it is a gorgeous cream with embroidered red polka dot cap sleeve dress – so pretty! – but it’s too short and so it’s just vegetating in my closet because every time I attempt to wear it I run out of courage. I don’t even try on stuff at Urban Outfitters anymore, their hemlines are typically way too short (and even though I’m in my 30′s I thought the same in my 20′s).

Comment by Anna

I remember that J.Crew dress, it was the Dobby something dress, right? Adorable!! Too short for me too, I had to pass :( Agreed that the Embossed Basket was too short too — had to go up a size in order to not scandalize myself. I don’t even browse Urban Outfitters, F21, Modcloth, etc. anymore, too depressing!

Comment by goldenmeans

I agree, as I approach my 30′s and have just had a baby, there are a lot in my closet that I know consider too short. Time to regime a lot of my past loves and make room for more appropriate attire.

Comment by Andrea

Oops, I meant rehome. Darn auto correct..

Comment by Andrea

Ah, I so have to do a similar closet clean. Procrastinating it like crazy though, because I have grown so emotionally invested and attached to some of those dresses! Need to bite the bullet and do it soon, I know I (and my hanger rods!) will only feel relief when they go.

Comment by goldenmeans

I think a lot of your readers, myself included (hint hint), would love to rehome some of your beautiful dresses, Anjali! If you decide to sell them, please give us a heads up!

Comment by Kristen

:) Haha, thanks, will do. I’m giving myself a deadline of a month, so hopefully that heads up will be soon!

Comment by goldenmeans

Being 5’3″ tall, most ready-to-wear items are longer on me than originally designed, sometimes laughably so (I remember worrying the Kate Spade Dotted Magdalena Dress would be too short for a conservative dress option, but it turned out to be below the knee on me! I passed on it for other fit issues.). For my shorter dresses/skirts (Flight of Swans dress, I’m looking at you!), I like to think I have a bit more lee-way in hemlines being both petite and Apple-shaped. If I’m not careful to use my stubby legs to balance out an outfit, I quickly look dowdy. Midi and tea-length is on trend now, but as much as I love the look, it’s very difficult for me to pull off (especially since, for me, it definitely requires my highest heels).

I also have the Emerald Cut dress and it hits me just above the knee. (I did size up, though, as it was an eBay find and I had read the waist ran tight.) I regularly pair it with Anthro’s Toadstool Cardi:
I find long cardigans complement and tone down some of the girly-ness of full-skirted dresses. One of my favorite combos is my champagne KS Melody Polka Dot dress with curry J.Crew Infinity Cardigan.

Hemlines are certainly a challenge as we age, but in general, balance is key. Tights, long sleeves, or, interestingly, flats *or* sky-high heels are all things that can mitigate a short hem by either balancing out or providing the right support for it.
Also, I think the right silhouette can definitely off-set a shorter hemline. Even at identical lengths, a straight-cut shift will look more sophisticated/age-appropriate than a full-skirted dress.

Comment by zyzzyva

I know we both struggle with maintaining/discarding overtly feminine stylings as we near 30 (and beyond ;), and shorter hemlines definitely fall in the same examination. Yet I think I’m too stubborn to let either go entirely. Just adjust and proceed whilst applying greater scrutiny.

Comment by zyzzyva

Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts and experiences z :) It’s interesting and comforting to know that even at a different height, you deal with some of the same types of problems and challenges, and hearing your solutions is helpful too :) And, btw, those two dress combos you described are basically the cutest ever, love them!

Comment by goldenmeans

Lol reading this post about dress lengths. I’m a little older than you and certainly women of a certain age, IMHO, need to look like we’re not trying to hard to be or look younger. Boy I did enjoy the short stuff when I was in my 30′s. I definitely at 5’6, nearly 5’7 with longer legs for my height, shopping for cute, but not too short dresses at Anthro is a challenge many times. I have tried on many cute dresses there that like a little too “cute” and I end up scrunching my face in the mirror because I WANT the dress, but realize its just an inch or two too short for comfort. Embossed Basket, Fluttering Flora are but two examples. It’s a struggle I can tell you at times, but decorum wins with me. It’s easier to length the eye in the Fall/Winter with tights and boots. Summer an be tricky. Oh, the struggles for Fashion.

High heels will be the next frontier I fear to be a decision point. I refuse to wear sensible shoes when that time comes.

Love the dress on you and nice that your Mom is able to wear the dress. It was too short for me.

Comment by Bronzi

LOL at “I refuse to wear sensible shoes when that time comes.” Oh, I am so there with you. In fact, I have insanely low arches so the time has probably already come for me to wear orthotics on a permanent basis, but I refuse to give up the heels :) Thanks so much for sharing your experiences Bronzi!

Comment by goldenmeans

You look absolutely beautiful! I know you don’t feel comfortable in that length of skirt, but I think you look very appropriate and not at all hoochie (of course I just found your blog–LOVE your style–and don’t know what kind of work you do and whether or not that would be appropriate). The skirt is full and does not scream hoochie momma at all.

And yes, I second the “suggestion” that should you decide to send your clothes to new homes, I think your readers/followers would love to help you out!

Comment by Kim

Welcome Kim! Thank you so much for the kind words :)

Comment by goldenmeans

hot damn- I hadn’t considered that as a down side of being tall! At just shy of 5″4 I will stop bemoaning my shrimpy fate and enjoy the relative merits of dress length (and cheer that I’ve adapted to heels to help out!)

On the other hand, I find I can still feel comfortable in certain shorter lengths if the girliness or sexpot factor are mitigated by opaque tights and the right blazer or cardigan. Of course, a little sexpot can be fun too (and shut up Stacy and Clinton…minis can be maybe totally possibly appropriate over 35! yes!)

You look great in green- I’m glad the dress hasn’t strayed too far. And the two-tone manicure is divine…

Comment by thatdamngreendress

:) Ha, these comments have taught me that height-wise, everyone thinks the grass is always greener, huh? I think everyone struggles in their own way to make lengths work for them and their body type as they grow older — our bodies are changing, and our wardrobes and our minds aren’t always ready for it! And yes, I looove Stacy & Clinton, but their rules can be a bit too prescriptive at times…

Comment by goldenmeans

I have the Emerald Cut dress too and at 5′ 1.5″ I find it a tad short too and keep pulling it down when I wear it…I can understand with your height that you find it short. At least your mom has it in case you change your mind and want to wear it with a slip or something. You look stunning in this outfit.

Comment by LoveYellow

Thank you! And good to know that the length problem on this dress seems to be practically universal! :)

Comment by goldenmeans

I don’t think it matters too much if you’re approaching 30. You always look stunning in whatever you wear, whether it’s a shorter or longer dress. Don’t ever feel like society dictates to you how short your dress or skirt should be :) x

Comment by Paul Carder

Thanks :)

Comment by goldenmeans

can you share a tutorial of your two-tone manicure or at least the name and brand of green nail polish? it looks fabulous with that green dress. short or not you look great in these photos!

Comment by Olya

Thank you Olya :) The manicure was done with Orly Luxe for the gold, and China Glaze Starboard for the green! I’ll see if I can work a tutorial into an upcoming post, or at least locate the one that I used.

Comment by goldenmeans

You look lovely Anjali, and I hope your foot is healing well. I wore the Emerald Cut dress on St. Patrick’s Day too, and to a spring wedding. I was a bit self-conscious about the length, but like you, I wore it with tights. That made me feel much more comfortable in it. I hope your Mom enjoys her beautiful new dress.

Comment by Val

My foot is much better these days, thank you for asking Val :) This dress would make a lovely wedding-attendee dress, I bet you looked beautiful!

Comment by goldenmeans

You look lovely in this and I’m going to second the comment that at least it hasn’t gone far in case you change your mind! Honestly shorter length and all it suits you! The tights work well for that and of course absolutely you should wear what you feel comfortable in but I just wanted to put this thought out there…if you feel wistful about not wearing this and perhaps other shorter hemlines as much as you wish you had, well seize the day, wear them now, you’ll never be younger than you are today and you know you may look back and wish you hadn’t given up on them so soon…what I’m trying to say is I don’t think you’re too old, not one bit, you don’t look it and well I think you should enjoy them now :) Okay late night rambling over….

Comment by Tea

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