Monday, March 31, 2014

Weekend Dress II

I noticed that very often when I pack for our weekend away, I take somewhat "formulaic" approach to my travel wardrobe. Last weekend, for instance, I packed two maxi dresses with two blazers. I remember packing two pairs of colored jeans or pencil skirts with two bright sweaters in the past. I understand why I do this. It allows me to mix and match my limited on-the-go wardrobe the way I like, and it really is not a bad approach at all. But I'll be honest, it bothers my spontaneous soul. When I am at home, I never plan what I am going to wear the next day. Whatever mood I am in (of course, considering what the weather is doing too) - that's what I prefer to wear. I do not have an office to go to - my office is where I am. The only person I have to please with my outfit is ME, since Justin and Anya seem to like me just the way I am, no matter what I am wearing.

WARNING: lots of travel pictures in this post.

The outfit speaks for itself. I just would like to testify once more that maxi dresses proved to be a very practical choice for a road trip. As long as I don't plan to climb mountains, I am convinced that a comfortable maxi + leggings is absolutely my cup of tea for a weekend away. And I don't plan on climbing mountains any time soon.

Suede loafers are soft and comfy, which makes them a perfect choice for a travel on a dry day. Layers of blazers or cardigans with jackets make it a very flexible for a changeable weather like ours is lately. (Spring in general is famous for changeable weather pretty much anywhere, isn't it?) Since I love bright colors, I brought a few colorful tchotchkes with me. So when I felt calm and peaceful and the one with nature, I picked warm gray and other neutrals, and when I wanted to feel cheerful and bright, I had this big magenta kaboom with merry polka dots adding to the fun.

The town we visited that day is Port Townsend. I doubt that you have ever heard of it, unless you live nearby, but it is one of the most beautiful small towns in North America I have ever seen (and I've seen quite a few in Washington and a few other states). It has the most delightful collection of Victorian houses, from the tall city type buildings to cozy and intricate homes overlooking the Puget Sound. At some point in history, Port Townsend saw itself a second New York City, or New York of the West Coast, and was booming with businesses. The New York destiny did not happen to it, mainly due to the lack of a railroad, and I am glad, frankly, since now we can enjoy the gorgeous old architecture of this quaint setting without the hustle and bustle of a big city.

Since the town is right on the shore, there are plenty of water related activities to choose from. You can take a ferry to the picturesque Whidbey Island or go on a whale watching trip (which we did a few years ago). Or just hang out by the water basking in the sun and watching the world go by, which we did happily that day.

This building is our favorite on the main street, although it is definitely not the only one worth mentioning. But it would be much longer post. Maybe some time in the future. We love coming to Port Townsend. It has everything we missed about the Midwest - gorgeous examples of architecture of the Victorian era which are abundant in many Midwestern towns, as well as Cincinnati where my husband is from and where I lived for a while.

That weekend, the town hosted its annual Victorian festival, although the main activities were finished by the time we arrived. We spotted a couple of fancy Victorian outfits on the streets, but did not snap any photos.

Springtime makes everything more attractive! The blooming flowers add even more to the sophisticated decor of the Victorian town.

There is plenty of great shopping in town - arts and crafts, books and furnishings, antiques and vintage, and of course clothing too. I was happy to discover two wonderful consignment stores - the sign below is for one of them. The owner of this shop really has a great eye for unique, artistic numbers, and I got a few things there (one of them was the floral cardigan from this post). I know I'll be back for more. Some time. Soon. I hope. :)

Dress - Old Navy. Blazer - Lane Bryant. Jacket - ASOS. Shoes - Me Too. Necklace - Talbots.

Location: Port Townsend, WA


  1. What a beautiful place, I love the old posters on the walls, the windows of those houses and the Hastings sign - it's very British looking indeed!
    I'm with you on packing, I hate to carry too much but I also loathe the lack of variety and the forward planning. It looks like you did a splendid job though, I love those shoes and you rock a maxi! xxx

    1. Thank you, my dear! I think things like this jacket will give me more variety in packing for a weekend too. It combines so easily with other clothes, who knew!

      The first European settlers of this area were English. There were some Swedish and other folks too, but Brits were a great part of it.

  2. what a pretty old town!
    o.k., old in the america sense - we europeans know it can be muuuuch older ;-)
    love that bright dress! gorgeous that the shoes fit the color perfect. and together with the striped jacket i have to steal that dotted blazer from you.....
    packing is a real job for me - like you i´m very spontaneous with dressing and i hate heavy luggage. i fix that oxymoron with separates that will match all with all. and i sewed me a comfortable skirt suit from a mid weight wool in deep purple tartan - an old school travel suit if you want. (picture:
    that suit match most of my cardigans, blouses and shoes, the jacket layers easy over and under. the fabric is soft and sturdy and don´t show wear.
    and if it must be i can hike a mountain in it ;-)

    1. I am from a very young town in Siberia, so 100 years old is pretty old for me too. :) But yes, I know what you mean. :)

      The suit is wonderful, great job on it, Beate! You look like an old world traveler and very adventurous at that! :)

  3. I love Port Townsend, and I love your outfit! The magenta and navy look great together. Too bad it wasn't warm enough to leave off the coat that covers up the dotted jacket!

    1. Thank you, Val! It was quite a changeable day, so I walked around with and without the green jacket, depending on breezing situation out there. :) Port Townsend is one of Justin's favorite places to visit, so we do it at least once a year, and have many photographs of this beauty... We noticed that the town has many updates lately - good for them!

  4. Port Townsend look beautiful; look at that fabulous blue/white corner building, it's amazing!
    I'm with you on packing, being short of space does stifle creativity and spontaneity, and I hate the whole capsule wardrobe thing... But needs must, and a maxi and a casual jacket is a great combination. I do love the colour of your dress and shoes, just beautiful. xxx

    1. Thank you, Curtise! Actually, this blue and white building reminds me Saint Petersburg in Russia a lot - some elements of architecture and colors, and probably the fact that it is by water. :)

  5. Natalia ,
    What a fun post to read and absorb . I love Victorian buildings and the photos are so. Calming and Lively and the same time. I love your long orchid skirt and your tee, the comfy suede shoes are a great choice. You are looking pretty and chic , as. You come to this lovely spot to watch the world go by!
    XX, Elle

    1. Thank you, Elle! You are so kind, my friend, as always! :) "Calming and lively" is a great way to describe the atmosphere of that town!