Poll: Ugh, I’m Not Able To Make Decisions, Please Help Me Pick A Dress

Look, I’ve recently come into some money, and I would like to buy a dress. By “recently come into some money” I mean “I’ve saved up the entire year to buy one of these two dresses.” But this is difficult! Both dresses I am considering have strong suits. Normally, I just run this by Ashley, but she will almost always pick the one that is black, and one of these is obviously not black. So. Here are the two I am considering. I am sorry I am holding up my phone weird in both of these, I did not anticipate running this by everyone:

Okay, one of this one’s major strengths is not having a floral pattern, but a pattern inspired by barnacles. I seriously think it is one of the most beautiful dresses I have ever seen. That pattern! The cut on top. But I’m a little worried about the skirt. The flounces! Too much?  Ideally I could wear this in the day as well as at night.


It is periwinkle! Do you know why periwinkle is my favorite color? Because periwinkle is such a great word to say. And it’s made out leather. It is like the most ladylike mod biker dress in the entire world. Here, here is its counterpart made out of pink leather, because I cannot find a record of it online. Also, this is dumb, but I know that if I have a day when I feel fat, this is the dress I will feel more comfortable wearing because it’s not too form-fitting.

If it influences your decision, I feel like the purpose of a dress is to say “despite the fact that you were much cooler than me in middle school, I have beaten you on a fundamental level. Also, I am not insecure, and the debate team was great, thanks for asking.” Additionally, in the near future, I have to do some business-lady stuff. I have to trick people into thinking I am a grown-up, mostly. So, if you think one of these says “Hi. Nice to meet you. My name is Jen. I eat guys like you for lunch.” I would appreciate you voting for that one.

Sorry! This poll is now closed.



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    • sara

      A very tough call!! I normally discourage the purchase of black dresses, but this one has two things going for it:

      1. Unique print. Will it be EASY to find another periwinkle leather dress. No..but more likely than a hot barnacle dress

    • S

      Listen, I think as a fashion investment, personally, I’d go with the McQueen but I kind of feel like either one of those aren’t particularly timeless. The Balenciaga is great, shapewise, but I feel like leather as a dress material is going to be gone as far as wearability in the next year or so. Both of them are so on-trend right now that it’s hard to visualize wearing them in a couple of years, and if you’re spending that much on clothes, you want to be able to bust them out a few times.

      I’d keep looking but if it’s one or the other go with the McQueen.

      • Prisca

        Agreed on all counts.

      • lisa

        Totally agree. Also, take into consideration how much more expensive it will be to get leather professionally cleaned…

    • Lauren

      I think they are both great dresses and you look great in both, but I’m more partial to the periwinkle dress. Periwinkle leather is kind of amazing and I think out of the 2, this one looks better on you. I think it has to do with the length.

      I also want your arms. Not your exact arms, because I’m figuring you need those, but similar ones would be great.

      • Jennifer Wright

        I’m chopping one off and sending it to you in the mail, being heroic, like that guy in 127 hours.

      • Lauren

        Wow, thanks! I’m going to use it to slap people.

    • sara

      (The ad cut off my view of the comment box).
      2. This is the rare McQueen that projects “Oh McQueen? Oh I guess it is..I had not noticed.” vs. “THAT’S RIGHT I BOUGHT A MCQUEEN BITCHES!!!”

      • Jennifer Wright

        This is a really strong point, normally I think McQueen makes normal human beings look like they are role-playing space alien princesses.

      • sara

        Which is fabulous in it’s own way, but also very show-boaty.

      • porkchop

        See…I’m getting a “THAT’S RIGHT I BOUGHT A MCQUEEN BITCHES” vibe from that dress. Not that that’s bad!

        Both dresses are wonderful, but I voted for the periwinkle. It speaks softly and carries a big stick.

        You can’t lose with this choice, though.

    • Quin

      At first I was thinking the black one, but oh my god, I love leather. So definitely the periwinkle one.

    • Fabel

      Periwinkle, periwinkle, periwinkle!! You look gorgeous in both, but I’m partial to the cut on the second one, and also, leather is great. Especially when it’s periwinkle.

    • Cee

      Periwinkle! And your arms and very nicely toned! :)

    • Leah

      I vote the black one. Primarily because I like barnacles. They both look great on you though!

    • Meg

      I love the periwinkle dress, but I suggest you purchase the McQueen for the following reasons:
      1. Leather is pretty on-trend, but I’m not sure how seriously I would take someone in a leather dress. Even with a suit jacket over it, it still yells party to me.
      2. Black dresses are more versatile, and you can wear it to more things without feeling people remember the last time you wore it.
      3. The McQueen shape is very flattering, and I read it as a more classic shape… that will look less dated in time. Also, I think it will dress up or dress down more flexibly than the leather dress, which seems to require a very careful selection of accessories.

    • Elizabeth

      Hmm. This is tough, because if I were choosing that dress for me, I’d pick the McQueen, no question. (Well, the question might be, “But should I keep saving and go for the Alaia?”) But I’m a dramaculous showboat with goth tendencies and a thing for flouncy skirts. I get the impression that you are not.

      Go for the periwinkle. It says, “Hi, my name’s Jen and I eat guys like you for lunch.” If it turned out that Patrick Bateman was innocent the whole time and had actually been framed by Kate Middleton to cover up her own crimes and fuck with him for fun, and she were a little bit proud of it, that’s what she’d wear to the trial.

    • T-Lex

      Hmm I really enjoy the top one AND the bottom! I can see why your crowd sourcing! I will go with the black and white as I feel like the second will be a second expense to think about in terms of upkeep and fixing it as I imagine it would cost more to keep clean and nice. So what that says is fashion wise I cannot choose they are both great!

    • Lindsey

      At first I was like “the black, the black, the black” but then you said ‘business’ so I guess the periwinkle.

      And I hate saying this, because I think the black is just stunning.

      But if you’ve spent all year saving up for it it should be something you’re going to wear through the years. If you gain any weight the black one is going to show it. Maybe if you gain like, 15-20lbs, it’s really going to show in the black dress. And also, I think the periwinkle will look great on you even in like, 20 years. Even if you gain a bit of weight.

      Also… That is the perfect dressing room. It’s big enough to move around in, hang up all your clothes, put your bag AND clothes on not the floor, an a full door instead of those awful peep show curtains… I need for that to be the standard dressing room.

      • Jennifer Wright

        It’s Bergdorfs. It’s pretty much just, all around, my perfect store in every possible way. There are never too many people. The salespeople are insanely helpful without ever pushing you to buy ANYTHING. And the dressing rooms are great. It is the store that every store ought to be.

    • MJ

      The black is so incredibly gorgeous. It hangs well. It has BARNACLES on it. I would try to steal it from you if you wore it anywhere near me. So do that.

      Do not get the leather. Leather is fundamentally gross. Think: barnacle-inspired nature-glorifying print or dead animal skin?

    • Starofthemag

      I always try to amortize the cost of a garment over the number of years I hope to have it. Am I deluding myself? Perhaps! But I would buy them both and then do some justification-type math!

      The leather dress will definitely last longer, but will you still want to wear it that long? (Yes! Because it’s periwinkle and looks divine on you!)

      My only question for the black one is whether the barnacles will snag on anything? It’s hard to tell from the picture what the actual texture is, if any. (It also looks fantastic!) Will it wear as well? Will it be as easy to clean and keep clean?

      It has been my experience that clothing with any snaggable parts usually does just that. I once ruined a beautiful vintage dress mostly made from gold tinsel with a mirrored bracelet that shredded the side of it.

      Good luck!

    • Jamie Peck

      The black dress! Partly because I think it’s cooler, and partly because I think it would be easy to find a periwinkle mod sheath dress for way, way cheaper than that one probably costs, while the one up top is one of a kind.

    • Ruby

      My immediate instinct is to go with the McQueen because MCQUEEN. Both of them look incredible on you and are lovely in their own and very different ways. Id say the Balenciaga says more “I eat guys like you for lunch” though. Whereas the McQueen says “I eat barnacles for lunch and I celebrate this in my sartorial choices.” Which may not be as intimidating in a corporate setting (but MAY BE, I dont know, my experience with business-lady stuff is limited).
      I would say for the money you’re spending I agree with Jamie, you could probably find a similar periwinkle shift-dress for much, much, much less money and like, BARNICLES. Then again periwinkle is totes adorbs. I realize this has been completely unhelpful. I’ll join the legions in saying I am intensely envious of your arms.

    • Ruby

      ALSO, leather can be really sweaty and uncomfortable! What if the air conditioning at the venue of your businessy-function breaks and your left feeling like mince shoved into a condom? NOT VERY CORPORATE-CHIC. Then again if your not gross like me and this isnt a pressing concern in your life DISREGARD.

    • breezy

      The McQueen, hands down. You look stunning in it, in the most understated, bad ass way. And sooo many more possibilities for accessories! Or you can skip them all together because the dress is a statement in itself. GET IT. DO IT. Love it.

    • marion

      Go for the black..its a beautiful shape.
      I dont think i could walk around in an animal skin…was good when animal was all a human could wear, but not in this century.
      good luck with the decision. I hate making clothes decisions!

    • Sam

      If it’s 100% between these two, go with the black one…it’s lovely but in my opinion, not worth spending that much money. I’m not a huge fan of the shape nor its length. The other one is very lovely but not particularly timeless. However, you wear them both as well as any model could, so it was difficult to simply judge the dresses themselves. But I think you can find more timeless, gorgeous dresses that will be even more “despite the fact that you were much cooler than me in middle school, I have beaten you on a fundamental level” (a concept that–believe me–I am so familiar with since middle school = hell for the majority of us!). :)

    • Lisa

      Jennifer. Wright. Buy the dress that is an extra week in South East Asia (or Patagonia or Africa or wherever your next vacation will be that isn’t too expensive to reasonably spend an unpaid week away from work).

      Not helpful, sorry. I get no paid time off (freelance), so I automatically convert all “extra” money into days I can afford to not be in nyc.

    • Spastastic

      I would have picked the black one, but then you said the pattern was based on barnacles, and barnacles really really freak me out. I mean, it looks pretty, but now it’s linked to barnacles in my head.

    • mm

      BLACK BLACK BLACK it wins by a long shot. The other is sooo simple, it’s not worth spending a ton of money on. It’s cute, but you could get something identical for a fraction of the money. The McQ is perfection. You need it. I need it. If you want, you can buy it for me =)

    • Lo

      Barnacle dress ftw. First of all, barnacles. Second, the shape is more interesting than the standard shift, that kind of detail is hard to find done well, and I heard from some grown-up that dark colours are more serious business. You could probably find a similar periwinkle shift dress cheaper elsewhere.

    • Deb

      The color is terrific, A-lines are endlessly flattering, and Balenciaga never, ever goes out of style.

      Carpe diem, OK?

    • Lindsey


      • Fabel

        I AM CURIOUS ABOUT THIS ALSO (Visibility in numbers?)

    • MR

      The purple one shows your legs better, I also like how it frames your figure.

    • Sean

      Jen I don’t know what you chose, but the Burton is on sale right now!

      • Jennifer Wright


        Thank you for this helpful information, good sir.