Predictable Peplums

February 25, 2013 — 40 Comments



I don’t usually eat my lunch in the staff room. This isn’t because I don’t like my fellow staff (I do!). It’s because I’m a graphic designer, and graphic designers are essentially trolls that live inside caves built out of monitors and reams of paper. We emerge from these caves for three reasons: to pee, to glean snacks from the Birthday treat table, or to go home. When it comes to our precious lunch hours, we allocate that time to catching up on what happened on the internet in the morning, because that’s just what designers do. But occasionally, I’ll bring a lunch that requires heat, and I’ll peel myself away from Buzzfeed to heat up yesterday’s leftovers in the staff room microwave. The nice thing about only using the  staff room on an occasional basis is that the magazine stock pile always seems fresh.Today’s outfit has me reflecting on an exchange that took place in this very context.

One this particular day, me and my soggy left-overs crawled out of the cave towards the staff room. I was pleasantly surprised by a new (to me) stack of In Style magazines. As I casually flipped through the pages, I came across a spread of very flamboyant printed pants, forecasted as the next big thing. A fellow employee leaned over and said, with utter disdain, “Ugh, I don’t like these”. I replied, with annoying assurance, “You will.”

This person probably found my ominous, confident prediction insulting (and unnerving, as it was delivered in a weird troll monotone). She probably thought “Um, you’re not even a regular down here. You haven’t even contributed to the book swap. I’ve seen you take books and I’ve never seen you put any back in. How do YOU know I’ll like printed pants, cave troll!?” If that were in fact her response, it would be totally justified. But, dear fellow employee, I speak from personal experience! Behold my polka dot peplum dress:



See, last year, when the peplum first became a thing, I was all “That’s weird. I don’t like it. Too 80s.” But slowly (predictably) I saw bloggers making it work, I saw one pop up on my girl Emma Stone, and I saw how it could disguise the fact that I eat Ruffles by the bag. Thus, suddenly (predictably) I wanted a peplum as much as I wanted another bag of sweet salty Ruffles.

Like the denim shirts and pleated skirts that preceded it, the peplum moved from something I resisted to something I wanted in my wardrobe. That just how fashion works. Those sneaky powers that be tell us we’ll suffer inside leather pants, and we think they’re crazy, but the next thing you know we’re all pulling a Ross in the washroom. So, fellow employee who’s fortune I tried to read, I don’t know if you’ll ever warm to printed pants. Perhaps you will forever find them ugly and distracting, but it’s more likely you’ll realize how well they disguise the crumbs from your bag of Ruffles and warm right up to them.

There are many people that will forever deny the influence designers and magazine editors have over their tastes. They’ll remain pre-makeoever Devil Wears Prada Anne Hathaways. That’s OK. I, on the other hand, welcome these fashionable overlords with glee, because they’ll never hold sway over my wallet. They may influence what I like, but they’re not going to profit from it. The Salvation Army, on the other hand, is taking the $3.50 it got from me for this peplum dress, and laughing all the way to bank. And in return, I’m happy to keep them laughing, because at least it gets me out of my cave.


Dress: Salvation Army | $3.50
Belt: Salvation Army | $0.99
Bag: Talize | $8.99
Booties: Talize | $12.99

40 responses to Predictable Peplums


    Great post – love your pictures! Your hair is beautiful – i’m so jealous!!!! 🙂



    Yeah, we sure are predictable… I have yet to fall for printed pants but, who knows, I just might…
    Love your dress. So ladylike!




    You look great in your peplum dress, but of course you look great in everything you post! I’m lovin’ the peplum too. It’s genius!! Looks nice on most bodies.
    Keep on thriftin’



    Love the outfit! You look amazing! Polka dots rock!



    Nice peplum, nice look.



    Cute dress! I felt the same way about peplum but it grew on me. I have been trying to score some peplum at the thrift stores for a while now. Printed pants though, have always loved those!!


      Julie Van Huizen March 6, 2013 at 7:45 pm

      I’m a recent printed pants convert. At first I was worried I’d feel like I was in pjs, then I realized that would be awesome.



    Reblogged this on Goodwill Hoarding and commented:
    This is/was a fun read



    Adorable dress and you wear it well! So related to your “troll like” work behavior…I guess writers have the same temperament as graphic designers…I’m eating my lunch at my desk while reading some blogs and catching up on my FB page!


      Julie Van Huizen March 6, 2013 at 7:44 pm

      Oh gosh you are so very right about that. I come from a family of writers, and they are exactly the same. The trolling sometimes lasts long into the evening.



    AHH! love the outfit and the price!



    Oh my gosh, I love your writing, I love this outfit, and I love that you thrifted it for less than $5! Amazing. I totally agree with you…there are certain trends that I have said I would never try and then I almost always do. And like you, I love to thrift trends instead of spend a ton on something I might only wear twice.

    P.S. I would love to feature this outfit in our things we love post tomorrow. We will be sure to link back to your blog!



    Hi there! I just found your blog through Two Birds vintage and was intrigued by your polka dots and red….I’m loving your style and your humor! I am absolutely with you on peplum– I wasn’t sure at first, but now as I am seeing everywhere I want to get in on it! You look great. 🙂


      Julie Van Huizen March 6, 2013 at 7:42 pm

      Thank you so much Brenda! The Two Birds ladies are just awesome, so I’m pleased as punch they led you to me 😀



    I really really LOVE this polka dot peplum top, just too cute!



    I love the way you write 🙂 I felt the same way about peplum at first but now I love it! This polka dot peplum dress is so cute on you, and the pops of red are perfect.



    Eeeep! That dress is just so perfect! I love how you admit that the fashion mags have a sway in what you like, but won’t drag you to pay hundreds of dollars for your clothes – I feel the same exact way!




    OH my tell me how you get your hair so nice! I basically have the same haircut right now but with a side a little bit longer, but my curls/waves never cooperate! Some stay wavy and others are doing their own damn thing!

    Also, I like the idea of peplums now, but I’m not sure they’re for me. But seeing one on you encourages me to maybe try it!


      Julie Van Huizen March 6, 2013 at 7:40 pm

      Ahhh it’s a hit and miss! I borrowed by sister’s clampless curling iron, small barrel, and just went to town. Since I have the thickest hair ever, I have to curl pretty small pieces. The end result when it’s bad is 80s-like crimps. The end result when it’s good is what happened on this day. I have no idea how to repeat it. Isn’t that always the case?


    Kitty and Casey March 4, 2013 at 11:21 am

    Hello, Fabulous, you just made me so hungry for Ruffles!



    I always wonder if I am too late to try new trends, and if by the time I like them they are unhip.



    your hair is GORGEOUS!


      Julie Van Huizen March 20, 2013 at 11:11 am

      Thank you Aimee! I have A LOT of hair, so doing anything do it takes a certain level of commitment, so I’m glad it came out well.



    I was like you when I first saw the peplum trend show up, I didn’t like it. It is growing on me though. 😉



    You look beautiful!


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