Coat of Many Meanings

Etsy. Have you heard of it? What does it even mean, Etsy? Is it an acronym? A pun? “Is this a [device] I see before me?” I do not know…

But before we get into existential discussions spurred by a website teeming with sinamay, plummage and vintage baubles, I should acknowledge that I owe you quite a bit as it pertains to posting about my personal style. I assure you, between whenever it was I last posted about an outfit and now, I have been wearing clothes (I can’t say I am happy about this, the being clothed part). I am resolved to play catch up– most likely in reverse chronological order– so don’t be alarmed if it is snowing outside and you see me virtually prancing about in frock fit for the equator.

Now that we’ve gotten that PSA out of the way, back to Etsy. Being that I am dreamer, I often have ideas in my head that cannot be fulfilled by Club Monaco or J Crew or even bloody Maje.  When I arrive at such a stalemate, I scurry over to Etsy, the website where vendors of vintage and makers of magic come together to perform the sort of alchemy that brews unalloyed happiness. Etsy is where I met milliner Corina Myla Haywood, where I ordered my godson’s first Christmas present (a custom-made name train) and the edifice of which I went banging with both hands after I spotted Jenna Lyons in the gloria-in-excelsis-deo of an ostrich feather skirt she wore at the wedding of Solange Knowes. No one is really sure what Etsy means, though. Discussion boards on the matter of its name consist of threads  of no concinnity, with contributions ranging from conjecture to jest.

Some say it stands for Easy to Sell Yourself (double entendre is the jocund device at play here, if I must spell it out), while there is some tale of sound and fury told by an admin about how the founder of the website met a gelato maker named Esti with whom he talked business during his days backpacking in Italy– what’s the term for a tall-ass tale that signifies nothing? (at least fables are allegorical, right?). One poster stated that she likes not knowing what Etsy means since she can make up her own story or just accept the poetic mystery of it all. I suppose there is something to be said for creating one’s own reality, much in the same way countless people flock to this website to make their own clothing–or have their own clothing made, as it were.

There is a certain poetry to the bespoke process that often happens through Etsy. At worst, you are having something made to your measurements and at best you engage with the designer/maker of a garment so throughly that imbues the finished product with  the sort of unique meaning that cannot be garnered from High Street finds. It is quite apropos then, that my friend described a coat I recently ordered from Etsy as poetic. I am not sure what he meant, but a poem’s meaning belongs (entirely?) to the reader. To me, his pronouncement indicates that the coat is a bit of an engima, not necessarily easy to comprehend at first sight and able to be worn (understood) in a multiplicity of manners (though not shown here: you’ll just have to stay tuned for more posts, I’m afraid). Or maybe he just meant that it is fancy. *Shrug*. You came for the pictures anyway…

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What I Wore: Shakuhachi tuxedo dress, vintage Nina Ricci Scarf, Jimmy Choo ‘Marvel’ boot, Celine Audrey sunglasses, Celine Classi Box bag, YL1Dress Modern Wool Gray coat

About Natasha

Word- and dough-smith. Girl in search of "the illumination, that ecstatic flash, from which truth emerges".


  1. In love with your outfit! ❤

  2. Julius

    Bauble queen!

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