I did promise some Frock Tales, and rather than start at the first outfit from the three sessions I have had since I documented them (whoops, sorry!) I thought I’d start with the last look I did at the last session, Saturday 5th December.
And there’s a very good reason for this – it’s a seriously cute look. I may have mentioned the concept of ‘dealer’s choice’ before; basically I rack up to Cindy’s place with a massive backpack full of luscious frocks, the majority (i.e. all of them) being retro dresses. Then Cindy, bless her, does my makeup (always glamorous with accentuated lips) and we spend a solid day trying out retro looks and more and more body bending posing. And at the end of the session I’m kinda nuked in terms of my brain (plus I always say the wig and the earrings squeeze my brain so I can’t think) so I put Sarah gently in the hands of Cindy for a couple of dealer’s choice – she gets to choose the outfit, hair, the lot.
And she always chooses *amazingly*. I still have very little confidence in choosing looks that aren’t vintage; I still think I look like a bloke in a dress, regardless of the thousands of pictures I have to the contrary. But Cindy just gives that knowing look, with her head on one side, and pulls out a frock that I always describe as a ‘belt’ (she seems to be obsessed with proving I can squeeze into a dress size four sizes smaller than the ones I buy. And she’s normally very right.
Anyway, long story short, at the last session we’d done eleven outfits, all of them gorgeous, and I was starting to think about the point at which Sarah would slip back to her pink flat in my head; I’d wipe the makeup off, dress in ‘his’ clothes and drive the four hours or so home. But we had thirty minutes or so, so we decided to try a dealer’s choice.
It was a yellow dress, not a colour or a style I’d have chosen. Cindy combined it with a straight black jacket, picked a fun, modern, dirty blonde/black highlights wig and when she had styled it and I looked in the mirror I couldn’t help but smile.
I looked like an attractive female estate agent.
For those across the pond, that’s what we call a realtor. For some reason the look just clicked like that, and off went my imagination.
Sarah was a little nervous about her day. As one of the junior members of the firm she had yet to sell a house; she had started as a secretary for the senior partners, but after a couple of glasses of wine with her husband one night, and some encouraging words of support from the dear man, she had plucked up courage and asked the partners if there was an opening for a junior sales representative.
And to her surprise they had said yes. They didn’t have any female estate agents, it was one of those old fashioned firms where it was assumed the job was a role for men only, but given the tide of society it was a good thing to have at least one female sales rep, if only to deflect any criticism of sexism.
Of course there was sexism, as Sarah had found out quite quickly. Rising from the ranks of the secretaries hadn’t raised her standing amongst the older male members of staff, and she had made the mistake of wearing the same kind of outfits she had worn as a secretary. That soon changed; all smart dresses and suit jackets for work.
So today she would sell a house. She’d even use some of the tactics she had seen, albeit in reverse, used by the successful members of the firm. Flirt with the men who came to look at the house, nothing blatant but the occasional ‘accidental’ rub as the prospective customer passed her on the stairs, taking off her wedding ring when shaking the man’s hand, giving him her new business card and telling him if he needed anything, and that meant anything, to help him decide to buy just to call her.
Ahh, you can take the author out of the man when he’s fully femm’d up but it will sneak back in whenever it can.
But back to the outfit; we added a pretty little patent handbag and did a series of poses as if I was talking to the aforementioned prospective male buyer. And it was so much fun.
Being serious for a second, I love this look. It’s not the usual type I do, but there’s a wonderful ‘normalness’ to it that gives me a lovely little shudder of delight when I see the pictures. She could easily be an estate agent; I can imagine her in the pub after work, glass of white wine in her hand as she deftly fends off the thinly veiled sexism in the shape of male humour from her colleagues.
A girl can dream.
Stay beautiful and if you want to fantasise let your mind have some fun. And here’s my card; if you need anything, and I mean anything, to persuade you to buy this house, my number is on there….