Allison M.

A crossdresser's thoughts on life, fashion, fabulousness, and (oh yeah) dressing up


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Gingham trench coat

You may recall that earlier this month of March, I participated in another poetry reading as Allison.  That particular Friday night here in Madison wasn’t too chilly, meaning that the comfy winter coat I had just added to my closet would have been a little too much.  But then, it wasn’t anywhere near balmy, meaning a light jacket would leave me chattering my teeth on the walk from my car to Mother Fool’s.

But earlier that day, out of pure coincidence, I came across this College Fashionista article that gave a nice recommendation for the season:  Layers are a great way to combat the chilly air that always comes with late winter/early spring weather March forces upon us.  The article came with a couple of pictures of outfits featuring long coats.  Problem was, I didn’t have any long coat in my closet.

Luckily, I checked out of work a little early that Friday, giving me a little extra time to head down the road to Target to see if they had any long coats.  Thankfully, they did.

Who What Wear trench coat

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Getting your hands on a formal dress

Yep, it’s spring time, which means that prom season is fast approaching for the high schoolers.  You’ll find proof of that in the malls, including the Windsor location in Madison’s East Towne Mall, where I snapped this photo on a day off from work last week.

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Notice a lot of pastel colors in this photo?  The shades of tan, gold, and seafoam green suggest the color of a warm, sunny beach.  Or perhaps the colors of colored Easter eggs, ironic since this photo was taken a day after Easter Sunday.  But more than the color, you notice the flowing fabrics, accents of glittering beads, and the silver of the accessories.  Overall, these are rather understated dresses, unlike a couple of dresses I spotlighted in this post from last May.

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Ahhh, formal dresses….

If the high school near you hasn’t had their spring prom yet, in all likelihood it will this weekend or next.  The high school located one mile from where I live is staging its prom on the day I’m writing this post.  If you go or have gone to a prom, it’s natural you’ll see more than a fair share of formal wear on both genders: Tuxedos with cummerbunds (or at least a decent dinner jacket and slacks) on the males; elegant, glittery dresses (or at least a very decent dress) on the females.  Perhaps those going to proms this spring might wear the types of dresses I’ve highlighted previously on this blog (such as the ones here or here), or more elegant items such as those I saw last week while window shopping at East Towne Mall.  One such dress that knocked my socks off at first glance was this long, black gown.  It’s flowing and fits the figure well, but check out the sequins, stones, and sparkles adorning the shoulders and chest area.  The bling really makes a statement, one that will certainly command the attention of everyone at the dance.

Wow! What sparkle!

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Allison’s fashion summary (4/26/2015 edition)

Scrolling through my feed on Google+ this weekend (and, yes, I am indeed on Google+), I came across this awesome outfit from Charlotte Russe that looks so awesome for spring and summer.  The skirt is this solid bodycon mini skirt, pink in color, stretch cotton in fabric, and high in waist.  The skirt really hugs the curves, and the neon color really pops!  In this photo, the skirt is paired with an equally cute destroyed (distressed?) denim jacket.  The jacket has a lightly washed fabric, and goes well with any skirt (its entry on the Charlotte Russe website pairs it with a flowing white skirt).  In the above photo, the pink of the skirt really helps the denim blue of the jacket to pop as well.  The pink and blue pairing feels like a suitable combination for the dual spirit of a girl like me (blue for my male side, pink for my female side).

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Allison’s fashion summary (4/19/2015 edition)

Rye and her “Mew-seum Visit” dress. Pretty cute, isn’t it? (image credit: ModCloth.com)

Just a couple of quick fashion tidbits I came across this weekend.  First off is an interview ModCloth.com had this month with Rye Silverman.  Rye is a standup comedienne, writer, and self-described “gender rebel” (that’s the term she uses on her blog) whose material includes honest perspectives on her life and being transgender.  She cites in her interview inspiration from Steve Martin and Phyllis Diller (for comedy) to Eddie Izzard and Ellen Degeneres (for self-acceptance and coming out).  Rye’s interview is enlightening not just for her TG background but for her fashion eye as well.  Rye considers her fashion style to be ever-evolving, but right now describes it as “a bit of a quirky or edgy twist on vintage.”  I would have to agree judging from her fashion choices; there are a lot of daring outfits that feature fun prints and quite noticeable touches of 50s/60s-inspired retro styles.  Some of the pieces from her selections that really caught my eye included:

  • This red, white, and plum dress with a plaid print, A-frame halter, and cute heart-shaped buttons.
  • A cute dress of 100% cotton with the cutest “portraitures” of fancy cats (that’s the dress Rye is sporting in the image on the right); it looks so purr-fect for any cat lover.
  • A few one-piece swimsuits with clear retro influences, among them this Bettie Page suit that looks ready to flatter any figure.
  • Several “Too Much Fun” dresses that, again, feature retro styles and influences; my favorite among them is this one in plum and petunias.
  • A few casual shirts that, as their name implies, look perfect for writing and blogging until the wee hours; this shirt looks the cutest with its coral-colored sleeves.

Rye sure has a great style, an inspiring background, and certainly a pretty awesome future.  Keep an eye out for her in your nearest fashion blog, comedy club, or MP3 player (she has a comedy album available for pre-order at Amazon, and even its cover gives off a retro flair).

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Allison’s day at the museum

[School bell rings]

All right, class!  Pay attention, please!  We are going to have a presentation today.  Allison will come up to tell us about a field trip she recently took, and she has brought several pictures as well.  Allison, if you please?

An amazing piece of architecture, isn’t it?

Thank you, teacher.  On Saturday March 28, I headed East to Milwaukee to see an event at the Milwaukee Art Museum.  Well, two events, actually, and I’ll tell you about them in a little bit.  Let me start by saying I won museum tickets through here, and let me just say, the congratulations/thank you note included with the tickets was so cute (and the person who wrote it has the cutest penmanship).  This was my very first visit to the Milwaukee Art Museum, which is situated downtown on Milwaukee’s lakefront and is composed of three main buildings, the most impressive of which (and the one that had last weekend’s exhibitions) is the Quadracci Pavilion, a building designed by Santiago Calatrava and open since 2001; its signature is a winged brise soleil (that’s French for “sun breaker”) that can open or close within 3.5 minutes. (That’s right, folks, Miller Park isn’t the only building in Milwaukee where the covering moves.)  Even when approaching its entrance via the walkway over Lincoln Memorial Drive, as evidenced in the photo at right, the Pavilion is such an amazing sight.

The Quadracci Pavilion is used for special public events, concerts, weddings, receptions, a cafe, gift shop, and, naturally, Milwaukee Art Museum exhibitions; the latter is more necessary than usual right now since the Museum’s other buildings are currently undergoing renovations, forcing some of their collections to either be moved temporarily to the Pavilion or just held off limits while the renovations are in progress.  The Quadracci Pavilion has also had starring roles in various film, television, and advertising roles, perhaps most notably in the motion picture Transformers: Dark of the Moon, where it served as a showroom for Patrick Dempsey’s character to show off his classic car collection. Continue reading


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Allison’s random stuff (3/26/2015 edition)

Just using this post to share some leftover photos from my mall browsing last weekend along with a couple of other things.  First off, remember my talking up spring fashion in my previous post?  Looks like the Express at West Towne Mall has spring break on their mind if this display is any indication.  Since winter is still on our brains here in Madison (even though it’s springtime), I saw these outfits and thought, wow, these would look cool for summer vacation.  But why wait for summer when you can head for Cancun or Arizona or wherever now? (Hint, hint, college students.)  Take that white top in the background, add those jeans, throw in the hat and sunglasses, and I’d have one flattering spring break outfit… that is, if I had a spring break to go on. (Sometimes it can be the pits being a grownup.)

If only there were a way to bring the beach to Madison.

If only there were a way to bring the beach to Madison.

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Allison’s fashion summary (3/23/2015 edition)

Well, it’s the early days of spring, and while one starts thinking of warmer weather and the nice fashions that come with it, here in Wisconsin, more often than not, it means this:

Yes, the above photo I tweeted this morning serves as first-hand evidence that Madison and Southern Wisconsin got rocked by snow during the past 24 hours.  I’m not exactly sure, but I’d say the West side of Madison, where I live and work, got about 6 inches, while areas South and West of here got a foot of snow or more. (More photographic proof can be found here.)  If you live in Wisconsin, you don’t really call spring “spring,” but rather other titles such as, “not really spring,” “nowhere near spring,” “second winter” (which a tweep suggested to me this morning), “Mother Nature’s cruel joke,” or my favorite, “the reason road construction season starts late.”

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