The Grammy Awards (are expensive)
If my last post was all about red carpet dressing on a budget, this week’s will give you a full run down on the break-the-bank, delusional over-spending that a good mirror, a special occasion, and manically fluctuating hormone levels can induce. I could also blame my husband, Chris, since if it weren’t for his four Grammy nominations (ahem), I wouldn’t have found myself upstairs at Mario’s, dropping half a month’s rent on a designer dress. Massive apologies to the college fund.
Mario’s is a Pacific Northwest boutique specializing in thoughtful customer service and Mt. Everest-high price tags. Chris has outfitted himself gorgeously on a couple of trips when he needed new suits for press and tour, but I had so far resisted the call of Isabel Marant from the womens’ department upstairs… Until the Grammys. We were there to find Chris new duds for the event, our favorite Sue helping him into a truly badass Paul Smith charcoal grey tux. We had been there for about two and a half hours (I KNOW) when I, feeling restless, hungry, and nervous I wouldn't find a maternity dress cool enough to accessorize his new outfit (it would be our first trip down the carpet together), ventured upstairs for “a peek” while Chris’ trouser cuffs were being pinned.
I casually thumbed through some dresses on the 60% off sale racks and was about to head back down, when the lovely Kristina approached. I explained my fear about finding a carpet-worthy dress that would work with my unpredictable waistline. She commiserated and sent me to the dressing room with an option by Alexander McQueen, a designer I had never even tried on, much less considered for my closet. To my horror, the dress was perfect. I felt a rush of confidence (or was that estrogen) immediately. It was chic, it fit beautifully, and it made me feel like a million bucks, which is what I would need my yearly salary to be to afford the thing. To make matters worse, when Chris came up wearing his suit and asking about buttons, it was clear to all of us that this dress and his tux were soul mates. A match made in textile heaven. The dress’ floral pattern fell perfectly over my bump, like the dress knew I was coming for it all along. Now, I probably would have been able to resist the $2600 price tag, as that is more than our monthly rent, but it had been marked down to $1071 and Chris was about to spend double that on the tux, so it for some reason seemed… appropriate? I was saying yes to the dress within twenty minutes of arriving upstairs. I plead guilty by reason of pregnant lady insanity.
When it came to shoes, I was at a loss, so I placed about nine online orders to Piperlime, Zappos, Gilt, Nordstrom, Neiman’s…
My new neighbor greeted me with “Oh, you’re the one with all the packages!” when I introduced myself (and then sheepishly mumbled something about traffic concerns and slinked upstairs). About four days before the event, in a brief moment of frugal lucidity, I scoured my closet one last time for something passable. I found it in my favorite A.P.C. cream colored strappies, which have now graced the carpet (and this blog) three times.
I flew to LA at 6:00am Sunday morning and was mercifully greeted by the always wonderful Steven Mason and new hero, Amy Strozzi, both of whom fixed my hair and face and had me out the door to meet Chris (who had just arrived on a plane from Minneapolis) at the Nokia theater, where we took our seats four minutes before they announced his first category. He didn’t win that one, but he did take home a Grammy for his album “Bass and Mandolin”, with Edgar Meyer. Maybe the dress’ price tag was due to the fact that it was sewn with luck! Or maybe I'm just pregnant.