I am genuinely beyond stoked that I managed to get my hands on a Mary Katrantzou Balloon Dress from her Topshop collection.
Just look at this work of art: it’s something other-wordly, of true beauty and colour, something seen in magazines or V&A exhibitions, not an item a mere mortal like myself in the suburbzzz could ever possibly hope to own.
So: how did I get my sticky paws on such a special dress? There were two contributing factors:
1) My credit card (obviously).
Impractical Items Of Great Beauty Unjustifiable In Their Expense, henceforth known as IIOGBUITE (catchy, don’t you think?!) are the stuff of which credit cards are made. They are certainly not bought on a money per use basis, so one will never see a healthy return on them.
However, like all IIOGBUITEs, this dress will bring its owner unexplicable joy and pleasure just from the sight of it, through the monthly repayments and up to the point of baliff visits and all-too predictable property repossessions.
2) The fact that the day the Mary Katrantzou collection went on sale at Topshop my daughters woke me up at 5.30am.
This should not have made a difference. After all, one would assume that any selling of such stupendously fashion-forward gear would begin at a normal shop-opening time on the appointed day. Say 9 or 10am. But no, the night before this collection went on sale I googled its Topshop online store start time, but to no avail.
As I lay in bed at 6am being jumped on by small people, I thought I’d just check for news on the store’s website on my iPhone. And lo and behold, would you Adam and Eve it (that’s cockney rhyming slang for ‘believe’, for all you non-Brits out there), not only was Mary Katrantzou’s clothing line on sale online, but the jersey dress I’d also been wanting was already sold out. ALREADY?!
This I could not believe. WHEN DID THIS DAMN SALE START? And WHY DIDN’T ANYONE TELL ME?! I’m guessing (and am happy to be corrected – please feel free), that it started on midnight on said day, and not at a more reasonable time of 9 or 10am! Anyway, I was annoyed, as not only was the jersey dress £100 more affordable, it was also infinitely more wearable (thereby negating the IIOGBUITE issue above, but with equal joy imparted).
The Large was, well, too large, whilst the Medium was slightly tight (which means I can’t wear my M&S Two Sizes Bigger Bra underneath it, although it is nice to know my natural boobs are good for something!), but all in all the Medium was a better fit. After all, it is called a Balloon Dress, so the boned balloon shaped skirt does nicely cover my ample bum whilst making my ‘I’ve had two-kids’ tum look tiny in comparison. And it’s beautiful. Did I mention that? Truly beautiful. I had no idea that in real life this dress would move me so much. The prints are so vivid they almost glow, and the shape is just something else: if you could buy it in every size, there is no body shape it couldn’t flatter. No wonder it’s been so popular with celebrities – it takes the heat off their chest size and the tightness of their buns! OK, so it’s a cliched IIOGBUITE, but it is worth every penny because it’s a work of art in itself, and I am happy every time I see it hanging on my husband’s clothes rail (my rail’s fit-to-bursting, natch!). The only thing left to consider is what shoes to wear with it. Hmm… I can feel a whole new blog coming on…!
This was originally posted on 28th February 2012
December 2015 update – This dress is now for sale. It’s in a Medium size, has been worn once, and is in perfect condition. So if you’re interested in buying this piece of fashion history please contact me below.