“The literary equivalent of a summer night, a good friend and a gin-and-tonic: Shannon is a deft writer; a natural storyteller with a wicked turn of phrase and frighteningly specific memory...”

Opt-in to the Shannon Colleary Communiqué to have both the Funny & the Wise delivered to your inbox weekly!

71 Dresses in 71 Days: Week 4

I’ve just concluded week 4 of #71dressesin71days.

This is my No Shopping Project wherein I, with Herculean self-control, do not buy ONE SINGLE THING to adorn myself until I’ve worn all 71 of my dresses.

This has been a week full of disappointments.  

I’ve been submitting my book to agents and so far have had four rejections.

I try to remember Jonathan Kennedy Toole’s Pulitzer Prize winning masterpiece, Confederacy of Dunces, wasn’t  published until he’d received hundreds of rejections and was dead. From suicide. Sigh.

In any case, such disappointments would lure to flex my Capitol One Visa muscle dexterously in the name of Ignominy (aka “disgrace – shame – infamy”) and Outrage.  

Scorn for these persistent, pernicious, putrefying (“to cause decay and have a foul odor; to make gangrenous”) rejections of work that scintillates and amuses (which makes me feel like having an amuse bouche aka a single, bite-sized hors d’œuvre.

However, to add insult to injury, I’ve gained five pounds and have to stop eating so much.

Onward dear readers, here are the dresses from week 4.  

It is your task, nay your duty, to select one that will be donated to Out of The Closet which benefits the Aids Healthcare Foundation.

This LBD was purchased several years ago at a Nordstrom yearly sale and makes me feel hip.

Dress #22 This LBD was purchased several years ago at a Nordstrom yearly sale, where I was supposedly buying gifts for other people.

Dress 23pic

Dress #23 I wore this Boden dress to the Getty Villa for my daughter Clare’s 9th birthday. She’s a dress girl too.

Dress 24pic

Dress #24 — This is an Anthropologie dress I bought in Washington D.C. because it’s very important to wear impractically tight dresses when visiting the Smithsonian Aeronautical Museum and viewing astronaut diapers.

Dress 25pic

Dress #25 — I wore this Athleta sports dress when my friend, The Hungarian, took me to a Korean spa so that a very strong Korean lady could stand on my butt and jump up and down.

Dress 26

Dress #26 This is another Anthropologie dress that is very comfortable because it allows one’s stomach to roam after cheese fondue.


Dress #27 — Another Boden. Could having so many dresses land me a job as a somewhat elderly princess at Disneyland?


Dress #28 — Wrap dresses are my kryptonite. 

Which one should go? To see all of the dresses so far …

Tags assigned to this article:


Write a comment
  1. Sharon Greenthal
    Sharon Greenthal 12 April, 2013, 12:35

    I would vote to donate #22, but only because I’m 100% certain you have other LBDs in your closet. Otherwise, you look MAH-velous!

    Reply this comment
  2. Jenni Chiu @ MommyNaniBooboo
    Jenni Chiu @ MommyNaniBooboo 12 April, 2013, 12:46

    I vote #22… because then you can buy another LBD which is always easy to find! Wait – does that defeat the whole purpose of this exercise?

    Reply this comment
  3. Anne Louise Bannon
    Anne Louise Bannon 12 April, 2013, 14:02

    I’m voting for Dress #24 – it’s not as flattering on you, although I love the draping and construction of it. I can see why you bought it.

    Reply this comment
  4. Carpool Goddess
    Carpool Goddess 12 April, 2013, 14:10

    What a great idea! I can’t seem to let go of anything in my closet, even though I’ve outgrown a third of it (depressing, I know). Anyhoo, I agree, let #22 go. By the way, LOVE the shoes in #28.

    Reply this comment
  5. KelKel
    KelKel 12 April, 2013, 14:33

    Whatever you do, keep the polka dot one at the end. That is the kind of svelte, fitted perfection that you get into fist fights with tanorexic 20-somethings at sample sales or claw your way through broken glass on your hands and knees with your credit card between your teeth for. Let #25 or #26 go out into the world to find its happy clothing destiny in someone else’s closet.

    Reply this comment
  6. Shannon
    Shannon Author 12 April, 2013, 16:08

    It looks like it’s #22 by a head.

    Reply this comment
  7. Donna
    Donna 14 April, 2013, 13:47

    Just commented on this week’s dresses but on last week’s blog before I saw the comments here. I will buck the trend and say keep the black one (22). I think this weeks dresses are all keepable. I know that’s not following instructions but #22’s shorter length makes it different from all of the other dresses. I’ll reiterate here that #28 polka dot is a *must keep*. Suggest getting rid of another one from the earlier weeks’ instead of one from this group.

    Reply this comment
  8. Donna
    Donna 14 April, 2013, 13:51

    I apologize for my errant apostrophe usage!!

    Reply this comment
  9. Linda Chase
    Linda Chase 14 April, 2013, 14:25

    I vote to donate #24. There is something going on with the bodice that is odd. The others are really cute, and you have a plethora (lots of) really nice shoes too.

    Reply this comment
  10. lisa thomson
    lisa thomson 15 April, 2013, 14:47

    I think give the Boden dress the one that makes you feel springy. Why? Because, it’s cheerful and you don’t wear it very often, and it’s happy-plus you have the most Boden dresses so to give one away doesn’t seem so daunting. It’s my first visit here to your lovely blog. I found you on BlogHer. Nice to meet you.

    Reply this comment
  11. Dina
    Dina 16 April, 2013, 06:29

    Either 22 (I like the knee length dresses better, and the elbow-length sleeves put me off) or #24 (the bodice isn’t doing it for me) should go. IF you have to get rid of them. I think your self challenge here is great!

    Reply this comment
  12. Carol Dickerson
    Carol Dickerson 16 April, 2013, 14:10

    I know I’m late to the party, but you MUST keep the polka dot dress. It simply looks too fantastic on you on you to get rid of!!

    Reply this comment
  13. Patti Auburn
    Patti Auburn 22 April, 2013, 23:12

    I have to disagree with everyone and say ditch #27.

    Reply this comment

Write a Comment