Let’s just get this out of the way right now: I’m scared of spiders. I can handle the almost transparent wispy ones, or tiny little ones. Once you get into the long legged, large bodied, dark coloured realm of arachnids though, I am, more often than not, outtie. No. Nope. Nuh uh!
And yet, weirdly, I noticed this winter I started to react with surprised appreciation at the jewelled vintage spider brooches I saw some of my fellow pinups wearing, rather than confused horror. I didn’t immediately count out a pretty print I may have run across if it had a bit of webbed detailing among the artwork. And by the time this Oblong Box Shop original Charlotte’s web collection came out, with the stunning colour combination of coral and rich petrol blue, I was actually sold.
Yes, in all honesty, I am slightly concerned that one day while wearing this sweater the spider in the artwork will catch my attention from the corner of my eye and I might drop whatever I’m holding in my eagerness to free both hands to frantically bat at my own shoulder in fear, but, you know, we’ll just have to wait and see on that. In the meantime, I think we all have to agree these colours alone are worth that risk.
Top: Charlotte’s Web Embroidered Sweater C/O The Oblong Box shop
Skirt: Charlotte’s Web Gathered skirt C/O The Oblong Box shop
Bag: Lola Von Rose
Bangles: Charcoal Fakelite by Splendette
Shoes: Spiked Stilettos from eBay
Birdcage veil: Old
The colour combinations in these pieces are just divine. If I were putting an outfit together I never would have thought to pair up this interesting shade of blue, mint and coral, but they work together beautifully. The springtime blooms featured on the skirt in various sizes are gorgeous, with the webbing that connects them all printed in coral rather than the expected white. There are plenty of looming black spiders dotted throughout the skirt, much more prominently than I realised at first from the photos on the product page itself, so if you’re a creepy crawly fan you won’t be disappointed by the eight legged representation on this print.
The skirt is made from a medium weight polyester, resulting in a lightweight wear that holds just enough stiffness over a petticoat to create great volume with ease. (If you want to get the full low down on the polyester fabric choice and its benefits you can do so here, but spoiler alert: there’s no shrinkage or colour fade even after washing.) There’s one hidden pocket on the right hand side, useful for keeping hold of the essentials that you like to have to hand (no pun intended.) The waistband closes with a side zipper topped with a single large button which can be moved over by an inch to customise the fit, as this fabric has zero stretch. For me being able to move that button made it super easy to alter the waistband to fit me correctly, since I was between sizes on the chart. The skirt itself sizes totally true to the chart, so follow it exactly and know that the button trick will fix any between-sizes issues.
The sweater features attention-grabbing embroidery on the upper right hand corner of the chest, a large black spider hovering over a red rose caught in its white web. As the sweater has half sleeves it makes it a mid-season sweater that can be worn at milder times of the year for those of us in temperate climates, not destined to be relegated to the winter wardrobe only portion of one’s closet. The material it’s made of is super stretchy and soft to touch, something I greatly appreciate as I find itchy knits impossible to wear. That stretch means you’ll likely be able to size down: I did, choosing the L to achieve that perfect fitted sweater girl look without the knit looking strained.
The artwork of all The Oblong Box Shop novelty print exclusives are designed by TOBS’s creator, Denialle Von Fitch, and done so with great love. Her range covers a variety of inspirations, from Halloween to Tiki, sea creatures to mid century architecture, so there’s a print for every novelty lover.