For the longest time I've been obsessed with the perfect French white shirt. I remember when Husband and I were driving around the French countryside in 1997 and we stopped in a thrift store in Toulouse. I explained my need to find a French white shirt and his response was spot on. "Really, any white shirt you buy in France will be a French white shirt." Ah, not so, Honey.
The perfect French white shirt comes in many shapes and sizes. Last night this pretty number was found in the bargain corner at Anthropologie for 70% off. True, it does have Jane Jetson sleeve caps but it's a cute twist. Look at how the pleats are sewn; isn't that sartorial perfection? I was up in Boston on an altruistic mission to help our relatives visiting from Ireland, who hadn't made it beyond the dire Quincy Market for two whole days. They deserved a trip to such an agreeable destination as Anthro, n'est-ce pas? There are only so many baby shirts you can buy that say, "My auntie went to Boston and all I got was this shitty t-shirt."
On several trips to France I've never actually seen a French woman in a French white shirt. It's my fantasy, really, of a simple but ladylike woman, quietly passing secrets to a dashing Interpol agent as she runs out for more flour to bake her cake. The French white shirt witnesses it all (the woman smokes, too, isn't that awful?) The collar is very important...the perfect Peter Pan collar is my favorite, but quite hard to come by. Ruffles of silk and chiffon are good, pure white cotton another favorite. The shirt I finally found in Toulouse is all eyelet with small white buttons and is the only authentic French white shirt I own. The one above also found its way into my Anthropologie bag, mostly because the chiffon ruffle can stand straight up like Laura's Bennett's black dress in Season 3 of Project Runway.
For those of you who read Casapinka for the design stuff I apologize for the plethora of knitting. I've gotten some oh-so-kind emails from readers wondering where I am. The truth is, I'm still here, knitting a lot, just waiting out the long antibiotic regimen...what a bore. I'm sure when the mojo returns I'll have lots more for you, so I hope you'll be patient and endure my knitting projects which can be done with a minimum of energy expenditure. Even Husband is longing for the days when he comes home to find me making a pink and yellow floral cover for his precious brown couch, while dinner is sizzling on the stove and the kids are doing Nutella performance art.
This is my latest little project, a pattern called Global Warming. I stuck the little seed stitch bow on it because it was just a bit too plain (see, Pink is in there somewhere!) The yarn is to die for, MadelineTosh DK, 100% merino wool, just in time for summer. I think Blue Cross should pay for it, really, since it's irrefutably therapeutic.
Emmaline is a wonderful summer project that I highly recommend. Knit in the round from the top down, so you can try it on as you're knitting, it's a perfect warm weather frock. The pattern is free and easy (unlike the wearer) from the oh so gracious Knitty.
If Emilio Pucci condescended to solids he would be responsible for such an ensemble. Kudos to the merveilleuse who channels her inner chartreuse. Painting from the consistently Gallicious (apologies for the neologism, how 2006 of me) Paris Hotel Boutique.