Lavender dress by Max Mara… and a hat

Lavender dress by Max MaraAnother dress. I am living up to my promise, arent’t I? More skirts and dresses. This lavender dress by Max Mara is my best buy at the outlet in Turin this August. Oh and the boots as well: comfortable in spite of the high heel and I think they make every dress and skirt look modern. Which was my biggest problem: how to create a more modern look with dresses and skirts.

Ron (husband) had a hard time finding a place to photograph. Winter is always difficult. I want a place which is not too cold, where there is no wind (hair!!), but with enough light for proper sharp photos. At the very last minute (after I had given up), he found this covered passage in Amsterdam. He thinks the bike in the background is wonderful. Really Amsterdam. I would have picked the bike up and put it out of sight. He wants it in the picture. As he is much more creative than me, I follow his advice.

Below: I love the wide shape of the dress. It is arty, modern, no “flaws” showing but it still gives the impression of a good figure. Normally the little split at the top would be closed with the button, but we were in a hurry and I didn’t notice it had come undone.

Lavender dress by Max Mara

I knew it was going to be tough to find the right tights with the boots and dress (tights are not my forté). So I took a heap of dresses, one skirt and top, a pair of boots and a pair of shoes to the best tights and socks shop in Haarlem: Stemm Voetiek. They have a fabulous collection, they know whether a product is true to normal size or bigger or smaller. And they are terrific with their advice. The owner, Ianthe, showed me many options and if I hesitated, she would get a mannequin leg from the window display with the tights in question on, put my boot on the leg and my dress above it. Which always convinced me. The tights I am wearing with this lavender dress, add interest to the outfit without overtaking it. In my opinion. My boots however, damage the tights and I cannot find (yet) why/how.

Below: two side views. Couldn’t choose which one to show you.

Lavender dress by Max Mara

Lavender dress by Max Mara

The details.

Below: close-up of the boots.

taupe boots Max Mara

Below: the bag. At the last minute, just before paying the whole lot, I always grab a bag at the Max Mara outlet. I have done that three times now and with no regret. I know this is not exactly the same colour as the boots and that it is matchy matchy, but I want to keep the outfit simple and nothing distracting from the simplicity of the dress.

taupe bag

Now, over to the hat. Yes I have bought a hat. If you follow me on Instagram, you have already seen it. Why a hat? Because Judith, the Style Crone, looks so gorgeous in hats. Which gave me the weird idea, if I put on a hat, I might look fabulous too. Although the shape of my face and the cut of my hair aren’t ideal for hats. We have a little hat shop in Haarlem with such sweet ladies who help you. It is called Cosy van Tutti. The ladies get you every hat from the shelves to try. No stone is unturned to see what suits and fits you. But absolutely no pressure to buy anything. I am a sucker for service, which means I bought three hats. All it takes now, is the courage to wear them. Deep breath.

Below: this scarf, although I like it, isn’t the best choice with this elegant hat and it isn’t tied properly either. Should have thought that through a little better. And combed my hair. Well fooks, concentrate on the hat. It is blue and the coat is black.


Below: it is slightly bigger on one side and you have to wear it tilted.

coat Max Mara, blue hat

Below: close-up

blue hat

Then, one last thing. Totally different from anything else. I was bestowed the honour to be sketched by Anne M. Bray, a.k. the Spy Girl. She is an accomplished artist whom I met last year at the Vancouver blogger meet-up. She is also a warm and sweet person. I found that out real quickly when I talked to her. Anne often makes sketches of fellow fashion bloggers. And now she picked me. I am so thrilled over it. Do you recognize this dress from my Turin visit this year?

Sketch by Anne M Bray, the Spy Girl


As you gathered from this post, the adventures in strange and wonderful cities have ended. You will have to make do with some normal outfit posts. A little boring, no laughs. I will see what I can do about that.


Linking to Not Dressed as Lamb’s link-up: I will wear what I like.

And linking up to Not Dead Yet Style’s link up: Visible Monday.






  1. 13 November 2016 / 17:15

    I love your dress, so elegant and classic. The hat really suits you. I used to feel weird wearing hats but I wear them a lot now. I suppose it’s just getting used to it. They are useful for hiding my messy hair on the school run!

    Emma xxx

    • Greetje
      13 November 2016 / 21:03

      Unfortunately hats make my hair messy instead of the other way around. My hair really doesn’t go well with hats. But short hair and me… nah.. not a good combination. It gives me a tiny head above broad shoulders. But I am getting lots of compliments. That helps getting used to it.

  2. Marianne van den Berg
    13 November 2016 / 18:11

    Another gorgeous dress from Max Mara. It is the symplicity of the model and the great material of which they are made which make them stand out. And of course the way you styled them with the tights, the fantastic boots and the handbag. I must say, I like all the dresses you bought. The ones you wore in Paris as well. I cannot find anything negative about them. Jakkes[dutch word] I sound like a slimeball. But you really deserve it. And I don’t complain about the lack of sightseeing. This is so much better than your garden lol.

    • Greetje
      13 November 2016 / 21:05

      It is indeed isn’t it? When I look at those early photos in my garden… haha. But we all have to learn. I am glad you agree with the dresses. There are a few more to come. One with flowers on a black background (always difficult to style) and one yellow with burgundy (I am still working on that one as well). Getting the dresses wasn’t that difficult. Styling them is still a bit of a struggle.

  3. Carrie
    13 November 2016 / 22:58

    I always look forward to your posts! The hat looks great on you – don’t hesitate to wear it. And the bag is gorgeous. My son and I recently went to the Max Mara outlet at Woodbury Commons in NY and I didn’t find anything so I’m a bit envious of your success in Turin!

    • Greetje
      14 November 2016 / 07:33

      Italy is home to Max Mara so I suppose it is far better stocked than America. I am even surprised there is an outlet where you live. And thank you very much for the compliments. Of course I will do my utmost to keep you entertained.

  4. Cynthia Peterson
    13 November 2016 / 23:30

    Love, love, love you in the hat! And the outfit you were sketched in is one of my all-time favorites 🙂

    • Greetje
      14 November 2016 / 07:35

      I am still getting used to wearing a hat but I get stopped in the street to receive a compliment. Which does encourage of course. The sketch is a treasure to me.

  5. Marilee Gramith
    14 November 2016 / 02:14

    Oh Greetje, you did a beautiful job of styling this high style lavender dress! I’m quite impressed that you sought the input of that special shoppe in Haarlem to get the perfect tights for your boots. I must say the outcome is awesome!
    Please tell Ron that I think including the bicycle in the photos IS very cool and artsy!!! I had to laugh when you got on the bike so Ron could take that close up shot of your boot on the bike pedal. GENIUS!!! He clearly persuaded you to his creative thinking!
    The hat and coat are wonderful!!! I really like the hat a lot and you look darling in it !! Don’t be so hard on your hair my dear , it looks good under that great hat.
    Hats are so interesting and your just wrong in thinking you don’t look good in them. You DO!!!
    This post was fun and very classy my dear Greetje

    • Greetje
      14 November 2016 / 07:39

      I KNOW that Ron is much more creative than I am so I follow his advice on shoots and usually on outfits too. I will come up with an outfit, run downstairs (well..
      run…) and ask his opinion. Usually he is spot on. Of course I am pigheaded at times as well. Thank you for the compliments.
      I am slowly getting used to hats.

  6. 14 November 2016 / 03:03

    I love the hat! I never would have guessed it was bigger on one side and even after you told us it was still hard to detect. It looks so nice on an angle. Wear it with attitude because I can’t wait to see more pictures with the other hats. Julia

    • Greetje
      14 November 2016 / 07:41

      Thanks Julia. As I am getting stopped in the streets to receive compliments, my courage and enthousiasm for wearing hats is growing.

  7. 14 November 2016 / 03:29

    Well that is a darn shame about the tights.

    The boots are such a throw-back to the 70’s. I love them!

    I must commend you on your hat. It looks bloody marvellous!

    The thing about hats is that they instantly make you more visible. For you this should be great as you are a people person already. I was thrift shopping today wearing my newsboy cap and had a young dapper man stop me and comment how “beautiful I was looking in my hat”. LOL! He might need some glasses but hats really do make a person stand out. That is probably why I like them so much. That and the fact that they cover my unwashed hair : )

    Kudos again to Ron for having that brilliant artist’s eye. The photos turned out wonderful.


    • Greetje
      14 November 2016 / 08:32

      The same happened to me last Saturday: a well dressed young man stopped me and said: “I have to stop you to tell you how marvellous you look”. Such things certainly increase my enthousiasm to wear hats haha.
      It just takes a bit of getting used to. And you are right… I don’t mind to stand out and talk to people. Hats are definitely conversation starters (as if I need one haha).
      Ron is still very good with outfits too. I come downstairs in whatever I have put together for his approval and he always knows exactly what is wrong (or right). So handy.

  8. 14 November 2016 / 07:03

    Ah…but Haarlem and Amsterdam are still far away lands for me Greetje! 🙂

    I’m taking notes on how you put that first outfit together. I too, am trying to figure out dresses for wet and chilly winter weather.

    My boots are also hard on tights. The zipper on one pair always snags them…for others I think it is just the rubbing that causes the damage.

    And yes…100% agree with Suzanne. Great shots…bravo Ron.

    • Greetje
      14 November 2016 / 08:56

      One reader recommended to buy two pairs of lovable tights and keep the boot tights separate. As long as the snags are hidden, it doesn’t matter. I often put a little cut of a plaster on a hard spot which snags. More difficult of course with a zipper. Are you sure it is the zipper itself? Or perhaps a hard piece of thread next to the zipper?
      As for Haarlem and Amsterdam… I don’t know whether we can shoot more sights in winter. Sooo cold. But I’ll try.

      • 14 November 2016 / 18:37

        Great idea to designate specific tights to boots!

        The indoor locations you and Ron come up with are as good as the outdoor ones. I don’t want you freezing your touche for the sake of blog photos. 🙂

        • Greetje
          14 November 2016 / 20:34

          Noblesse oblige. If freezing my butt off, is what it takes, so be it. ?

  9. 14 November 2016 / 09:30

    Nothing is more perfect than simplicity. The shape, the delicate colour and the quality of fabric make the difference . A friend of mine says that when you get used to it, can’t easily go back ( and I add … especially if you pay a lower price for it! ).
    With taupe colour shoes not too dark tights look better. The assistant found a really good solution for you!
    You look very nice wearing the hat ! I should take out mine …

    • Greetje
      14 November 2016 / 13:09

      I am doing you proud, arent’t I? Wearing more and more dresses. I am very happy with the tights. I think they are the cherry on the cake. And wearing a hat … I am still getting used to it. But I do get a lot of compliments.

  10. 14 November 2016 / 14:17

    Ohhh Greetji—another dress just makes me smile!! See, you are marvelous in them!!!!
    The tights are quite stunning, I must admit. Bummer that the boots snag them, but you could wear a pair of socks over them (under the boots) to try to protect them??
    ps..I love Anne’s drawing of you—it’s so perfect!!

    • Greetje
      14 November 2016 / 17:10

      I am so smitten by this dress. And Astrid (the woman who commented after you has very good solutions for the snagging. One similar to yours. And I will frame Anne’s drawing.

  11. 14 November 2016 / 15:26

    Nice blog! I might be able to help you out with your tights problem, it is quite common and has two easy solutions. If you know which bit inside the boots does the damage, put a bit of leukoplast on it. My personal favorite is to turn this into a fashion statement. I notice that your boots are not tight around your leg, so there is plenty of room for this solution. What to do? Buy matching legwarmers or overknee socks and use them to protect your tights. You can wear them as high or as low as you want, but I prefer to just let them peek over the top of my boots. Added bonus is that your boots now fit snugg around your legs and that keeps you warmer. I also use the legwarmers to fill the gap when I wear ankle boots that are too wide for my ankles. This way you get to play even more with colours and styles and you will find a way to make it work for you. Stemm has a wide selection of legwarmers and overknees, of course.
    Hope this helps!

    • Greetje
      14 November 2016 / 17:14

      Fantastic ideas Astrid. Thanks. The leukoplast trick is one I use already. Just couldn’t find any snags in the boots. I will look again. The sock ideas are fun. A level higher of styling higher for me, but it is good to keep on learning.

  12. 14 November 2016 / 15:31

    Fun post. I like how, with growing confidence, you seem to be embracing femininity more closely. It suits you. Now you’ve made me want to jump on a plane to Haarlem just to visit a tights store!

    • Greetje
      14 November 2016 / 17:18

      You would love the tights shop! And Haarlem has more to offer haha. I used to wear far more dresses but in a rather classic way. My taste changed as my blogging years past and I didn’t know how to create a modern look with dresses and skirts. So I resorted to skinnies. Until my Italian blogging friend said she thought it was such a shame. I think I am much better now.

  13. 14 November 2016 / 17:03

    First of all, the hat looks great on you, and I think most hats look better worn on a bit of an angle. I have found that for me to wear a hat all day, I have to just put it on and then try and forget that I’m wearing it. If it is a hat that doesn’t fit quite right, or needs to constantly be adjusted, then I feel self-conscious and it shows. Someone said that hats are the icing on the cake of an outfit.

    I like the shape of your dress – I would wear it too, but in a darker colour. I like that you took pieces to the hosiery store to find the right accessories. Ron does have a good eye for backgrounds in your photos and I think leaving the bicycle in was a good idea!

    • Greetje
      14 November 2016 / 17:22

      I now have three new hats and two bonnets which I already possessed. I am slowly getting used to them. The shop made sure they fit well, but I still feel conscious. Until last Saturday when a young man stopped me to say he thought I looked great. Hah! That is what I call encouragement.

  14. 14 November 2016 / 19:56

    Lovely simple-chic dress, Greetje, and the boots are TDF. And yes, you can trust Ron – your pics are always excellent! Thanks for linking, xo


    • Greetje
      14 November 2016 / 20:47

      Thanks Patti. Always a pleasure to link up with you. Being visible is such a nice “cause”.

  15. 14 November 2016 / 20:51

    Fabulous dress, the color and silhouette and contemporary and on point! The lace tight and gorgeous boots ( thanks for the close-up) are perfect,
    Hats off to Ron for the excellent backgrounds, and I do love the bicycle.
    Love the hat and cloak, and I agree, the scarf, is not great with it, but it kept your warm!
    This is excellent Greetje.
    XX, Elle

    • Greetje
      14 November 2016 / 21:31

      Thanks Elle. I am brooding on the scarf. And I will pass the compliments on to Ron.

  16. 14 November 2016 / 22:09

    Your ordinary posts are far from boring Greetje. Ron was right to keep the bike in place, it adds a bit of interest to the shot. You had very good advice on the boots and tights to go with this simple, elegant dress. I have a pair of boots that wreck my tights too, but don’t know why. And last of all, the hat suits you very well. Lovely, and now you can go play with Judith – hurrah! Oh, but I almost forgot – the sketch is fab, it really looks like you – how lovely x

    • Greetje
      15 November 2016 / 15:36

      I am purring like a cat because of all your compliments. Ron is a great help. Both in photography and in styling advice. And I cannot wait until the next Hat Attack.

  17. Mrs N
    14 November 2016 / 23:30

    Fab outfit, you look super. The tights shop sounds fab. Lush bag today, leather looks very soft and the colour will work with so much.

    • Greetje
      15 November 2016 / 15:37

      All my “last minute bags” from the outlet have proven to be terrific. So you can imagine that while I am looking for clothes, I have one eye on the bags. Thanks for all your compliments.

  18. 15 November 2016 / 00:19

    I think you look cute in the hat! And the tights are a perfect choice. Because the dress is solid I like the little bit of pattern/texture they add.

    • Greetje
      15 November 2016 / 15:39

      I would never have come up with these tights, but you are right in your assessment. I love them.

  19. Paula Hartley
    15 November 2016 / 01:57

    Love your style Greetje! Always look forward to your ‘Sunday with Greetje’ post 🙂

    • Greetje
      15 November 2016 / 15:40

      I am very consistent aren’t I? Hope to keep you entertained for a long time.

  20. Christine
    15 November 2016 / 04:53

    I love this dress/boot outfit on you. It’s so elegant and modern. I’ll bet the dress would look great belted and worn as a tunic over a skirt or slim pants. Im not such a fan of the hat because it covers your hair. Your hair is always gorgeous.

    • Greetje
      15 November 2016 / 15:44

      Hah… I love that.”your hair is always gorgeous”. You just made my day. If there is anything which gives me bother, it is my hair. It is thin, straight and there is not a lot of it. But I take good care of it and apparently I am doing a good job considering what you say.
      The dress is too wide to belt it. Would not work well, I am afraid. But I have so many tunics, so that is not a loss. Dresses is what I needed.

  21. 15 November 2016 / 12:32

    such a cool fashion illustration of you!! 🙂
    bravo for buying AND wearing hats! i think you should wear that scarf much wilder tied with the classic hat & coat – for contrast.
    that simple but chic dress suits you perfectly – and well done with tights and boots and bag! you look like a boiled in the wool fashionista! and i have i bit boots&bag envy 🙂 love this matte colors and the shape and colorblocking of the boots…….
    ron is indeed a very good photographer!

    • Greetje
      15 November 2016 / 15:48

      Thank you very much for all these compliments. I will pass the compliments on to Ron. Never heard the expression “boiled in the wool” but I get what you mean. The scarf will be replaced by another one, wilder indeed. I recently bought a big black and white one. I think that might look nice.

  22. 15 November 2016 / 16:31


    • Greetje
      15 November 2016 / 20:01

      Wow, great compliments. Thank you. My hair is my weak spot (thin, straight and little of it). So if I get a compliment on my hair I giggle a bit and pass the compliment on to my fab hair dresser.

  23. 15 November 2016 / 17:14

    That’s a great dress! And I just love the boots (how great that they are comfortable despite the heel). The tights are beautiful, too! The entire look is fantastic. You got a great hat! And as a scarf lover, I love the scarf. Looking at the photo, I would have never thought that the scarf isn’t appropriate…

    • Greetje
      15 November 2016 / 20:03

      Thank you very much Andrea. There is nothing wrong with the scarf, quite the contrary. But I think I can create more harmony and awe with another scarf.

  24. 15 November 2016 / 23:01

    Love the dress the boots the tights, but the hat! OMG, that is so special, and you really look great in it. WHY have you never worn hats before? I feel a little self conscious for the first 5 minutes I’m wearing one then I totally forget it. You must wear them more often, especially now that you have THREE! xx

    • Greetje
      16 November 2016 / 07:03

      I don’t (didn’t?) wear hats because they make me feel very chic and ladylike. Which I am not. I might sometimes give that impression but that is not me. On the other hand there are many sides to my character. Second reason is that I thought it would mess up my hair (= a big no no) but they don’t. Not more than the wind does. Third reason: my bob isn’t the ideal hair style for a hat. Long or short hair is much better and easier. I could put my hair up underneath the hat but I don’t like that. An elaborate answer.

  25. 16 November 2016 / 14:36

    Wow gorgeous in MaxMara – love you with that coat and hat together!!!

    Please check out my latest collaboration with STYLEWE – a unique online platform of independent & cutting edge fashion designers from around the world!

    Happy Wednesday!


    • Greetje
      16 November 2016 / 17:31

      Thanks Rebecca.

  26. 16 November 2016 / 16:21

    Shift dresses look stellar on you, Greetje, with your non existent (ever so covetable) hips and legs that go on forever. Put me in a sheath dress and I look like a lumpy sack of potatoes. Neither very alluring nor aesthetic 🙂 which makes me love your entire outfit just that little bit more but I must confess, that love is speckled with teeny tiny polka dots of envy. I cannot lie. Your tights are beautiful, they add texture and class without any allusion to street walker vibe whatsoever (such a fine line when buying tights, no thanks to you, Pretty Woman movie) and your boots are magnificently crafted. Like so many others here, I must echo the sentiment that you really ought to wear hats more often. They do suit you, with the wider brim, balances everything out.

    p/s I would’ve moved the bicycle too GRIN

    • Greetje
      16 November 2016 / 17:42

      Finally! Somebody who would have moved the bike. Thank you Sheela haha. This particular hat is rather ladylike (which I am not) and I am not wearing it too often. I have a black pillbox hat (do you call it that too?), which I wear more often. Always gets me compliments. And I have a third green one which I cannot describe.
      I never knew tights could make me look common. That is a new one for me. I have seen Pretty Woman but I don’t recall anything like that. Must see it again. I laughed over your teeny tiny polka ots of envy. I often feel loads of envy looking at other bloggers. But as Melanie (Bagandaberet) says: comparison is a thief of creativity. And we all have our lovely points and lesser points. As a blogger we also know which ones to emphasize ?.

      • 16 November 2016 / 17:57

        Oh no, Greetje, never common!!! Oh dear, I did not mean it that way 🙂 it’s just that for the longest time, tights are too often associated only with just one profession, one vibe, which is clearly not in your case because I felt you elevated them, and made them look really classy and sophisticated 🙂

        And yes, we call them pillbox hats too. I love those ever since I saw one on Queen E.

        • Greetje
          16 November 2016 / 19:33

          Tights are often associated with just one profession?? Not in The Netherlands. Every woman wears them here. Every woman. It is a cold country.

  27. 17 November 2016 / 02:09

    Love the dress, the coat and the hat but my favorite is the fabulous boots. I know what you mean by trying to wear dresses and skirts on the blog, I have the same problem…always in pants especially for fall. I so miss Amsterdam and how beautiful it is and the bike is just perfect!

    • Greetje
      17 November 2016 / 07:30

      You miss Amsterdam? When did you visit our capital?

  28. 17 November 2016 / 07:45

    We were there last summer 2015. Amsterdam and Belgium and I loved it there.

  29. 30 November 2016 / 23:49

    Hey, where’s my comment? Oh yeah, I didn’t write one! Hahaha. Until now. I’m so freaking slow. You say you’ll put boring local posts now lacking humour? Hahaha. See? Laughs right there. So untrue. Fantastic simple dress, and the boots, well, everything are gorgeous not just for how they look, but I can SEE the quality which is always, always worth a second look. The hat, yes, that is stunning. I like the other hats you show down the line too. You’re catching on to this habit it seems. Ron’s backdrop scouting is ace. I like the bike too. Heh.

    • Greetje
      1 December 2016 / 07:22

      Yes, I really leave it up to Ron to decide on the background etc. He is so much more creative than I am. He is complaining though that he doesn’t want to be held responsible when he doesn’t come up with a suitable background. Poor guy. Gets dragged in to the blogging world.
      The hat thing is new to me and I am still taking deep breaths before I take one for a walk. It surprises me that hats don’t mess up your hair as I thought they would.

  30. 30 November 2016 / 23:52

    PS. Would you be comfortable with bright yellow or red tights with that dress so it would be a more bold colour blocking look? Think of Mondrian… Just an idea. I looove how your sales associate was so dedicated to your shopping experience. Corey from Holts, by the way, I think has moved to Nordstrom. !!! You didn’t see hear that from me. Heh.

    • Greetje
      1 December 2016 / 07:25

      Oh thanks for this advice. I have dark red tights (not too dark, not black red). And I am going to try it this weekend. Thanks you, my personal assistent. Corey was good!! Which shop is the better one? Holts or Nordstrom? Did he make a good choice for his career? Sweet guy.

      • 1 December 2016 / 07:32

        Well, Nordstrom is shiny and new, it has a buzz. Holts just completed a major makeover but so far Nordstrom seems to be winning. There are many Nordstroms in North America, so probably more opportunities for advancement. I tried to chat with Corey there, but he was up to his eyeballs in clothes for a shopper. Of course!

        • Greetje
          1 December 2016 / 07:43

          I wonder whether Nordstrom wouldn’t like to employ you in some way too. For throwing creatice curve balls, for catwalks etc. But I bet you wouldn’t want to.
          If I am ever in Vancouver again we will go back to Corey together or with a bunch again. Showing him the pictures and how we all raved about him.

  31. 6 December 2016 / 05:04

    Dear Greetje, I love your dress, but you know that I’m going to focus on your gorgeous hat. Thank you so much for the kind mention! I was thrilled to see you beautiful face pop up on Hat Attack. I loved your description of the hat shop and its staff. More to look forward to when I visit!!!! The fact that you purchased three hats is very exciting! I look forward to seeing more! Thank you so much for sharing with Hat Attack!

    • Greetje
      6 December 2016 / 14:23

      It was my pleasure entirely. I do say I have to get used to them. And quite frankly, this blue one is rather chic and royal to me. Not really me. Or perhaps it takes some getting used to.

      • 6 December 2016 / 15:10

        Yes, it takes getting used to. The hat looks wonderful on you. It just takes practice!!!

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