Every now and then, I will get an idea in my head and then not be able to shake it. It might be something simple, like I really must get a good recipe for Cornish pasties and try making them or it might be more involved, liked deciding five years ago last month to start a blog (and hoo boy, I had NO IDEA what I was getting myself into). But whatever the idea is, it is an itch that must be scratched until it’s gone.
I’ve recently decided that my robe situation is not acceptable. And by robe, I mean those comfy garments one schlumps around the house in. I’m guessing we all have a favorite tattered robe or two. Possibly said robe is very old and not something you’d ever want anyone to see you in (other than the person or persons with whom you live and that’s only because they’re legally stuck with you). And if you’re newly in a relationship, this robe is not the one you break out after your first, ahem, sleepover with your romantic interest. Oh no, you wait until far, far, FAR later in the relationship before showing your warts and scars and schlump.
I have three schlumpy robes: an emerald green terrycloth robe that I wear after showers (13 years old), a vivid red fleece robe that has the odd distinction of having been my great-grandmother’s, although I don’t think she wore it much before she died (at least 10 years old), and a pale blue cotton waffle-weave robe that I bought when I was pregnant with Ellie so that I’d have something pretty to wear in the hospital (11 years old) (it’s really not all that pretty anymore). All are more than a bit schlumpy and all are more than a decade old, so I’m thinking it’s time to add something new to the rotation.
What I want is a pretty robe. Or two. Something that would just make mornings a bit more palatable when the alarm goes off at oh-my-god o’clock and we all shuffle downstairs to figure out breakfast and face the day. Also, something that would look pretty on those rare days when I stay in my PJs all day. (Yesterday was totally one of those days, due to a cold and mild fever.) Something that I could pack for vacations and when the TSA inevitably goes through my luggage, at least no one would comment, “Pity the poor bastard whose wife wears this schmatte.”
Actually, what I’m thinking of can’t be called a robe because that doesn’t sound pretty. Perhaps it should be called a kimono, because what I have in mind is soft and lovely and floaty and definitely not at all schlumpy. It would sit lightly on my shoulders and be at least as long as my calves, if not my ankles. It would have loose sleeves that would get in the way when I’m putting containers of grapes and carrots in the girls’ lunch boxes, but at least those sleeves would look pretty when they’re in the way. And it would float around my legs as I move around, as if it were caught on a breeze. I’m thinking of soft blues, purples, and greens. Possibly a floral print. Something utterly feminine. At first, I thought I wanted something made of silk, but I’m not 100% sold on that. Maybe a soft organic cotton or bamboo?
What I don’t want is cheap Asian sweat shop-made rayon, polyester, etc. I don’t want flannel or fleece or terrycloth. I don’t want the colors or pattern to be garish. I don’t even want it to be too bright. And definitely not shiny. In other words, nothing that looks like it belongs in a bin at the Goodwill or on someone in an overnight holding cell.
I did some searching online and came across some interesting robes, kimonos, and other similar garments.
For example, this one, which is labelled a caftan. I’m sorry, but caftans are not what I had in mind. What that brings to mind is Mrs. Roper from “Three’s Company” and I am no Mrs. Roper. This caftan should not even be included among the other kimonos and robes that popped up, even if it is ridiculously overpriced. Spending a lot of money on a caftan doesn’t make it pretty or sexy; it just makes it overpriced ugliness.
I am also going to have to ix-nay any garment that has the words “velour” or “lounger” in its description, such as this one. That, my friends, is lingerie for the over-80 set, which is not at all what I have in mind. Also, it looks like a choir robe. Oh, and those slippers need to be burned. Now.
Another one of my first online shopping stops was Victoria’s Notsosecrets. There, I found a few lovely things, although I have to confess that I was not one bit enthralled by the leopard print one, in spite of my professed love for leopard. And this one was just too Hugh Hefner for my taste. Nope, neither of those will do.
I moved on to Etsy and found a shop that sells all sorts of pretty things, including lots of lovely kimonos. J’adore this one and this one. They also sell pajama pants that are so pretty that I’d be tempted to find a way to wear them in public. At the very least, I might need some for sleeping. Maybe Pete would appreciate them or maybe not, but I would totally feel amazing in them.
In another Esty shop, I found this lovely lavender kimono. Such a pretty color. Which reminds me that I need to tell you: Y’all wouldn’t believe how much purple I have in my wardrobe these days, especially as compared to a year ago when it was mostly in hues of black. I’ve come a long way in the past year.
And here’s another one on Etsy that is stunning, but this one is hand painted and comes with a $989 price tag that puts it far out of my price range. Still, it’s nice to look at, nicht wahr?
Here’s one that is made of organic cotton and which is a reasonable price. And let anyone think I’m looking at the gray one, I’m actually eyeing the blue and white one. Try not to let your jaw hit the floor in shock.
What one wears with such a robe depends on your particular situation and what you might be doing while wearing the robe. The fact is, most days, I’d wear mine with the jammies I slept in. Those used to be a hodge-podge of t-shirts and schlumpy pants, some of which were simply stained t-shirts that could no longer be worn out in public due to an unfortunate meeting of cotton and bleach. But then I came to the realization last year that wearing such rags to bed is no fun at all, so as my old stuff has gotten too big, I’ve been replacing it with pretty PJs.
Then there’s what one wears on one’s feet when wearing a frothy pastel kimono, because clearly your stinky beat up fleece scuffs will not do. I also don’t think those maribou trimmed mules worn so often on daytime soaps are what I have in mind either. Something in between, but I’m not sure what.
What about the rest of you? Who has robes and who has kimonos? Come on, share your secrets with us.