Dressing To Phoenix

Steven Meisel Devon Aoki Vogue Italia

Dear Libra Dress Historian,

Thanks to Pluto and I presume, Uranus, I have been the involuntary Phoenix this last two years. I have changed name, country, job and friends. Everything but the clothes I wear and I now LOATHE them.

Current style: high end hippie, expensive ethnic looking shit.
Desired style: sleek like the Gucci or Calvin Klein look but with a third of that price tag please.

I am a Scorpio and actually have anxiety attacks at the prospect of shopping, showing myself to sales attendants, Perfectly prepared to take all current clothing, put in charity bin and start over but HOW? I am in my 40s and fit but not “Real Housewife” standard. Where do I begin? How do I plan this? I can’t go naked. I am not young enough to just “do it all online”.

My best shopping experiences in the past have always been driven by a very specific purpose, like a mission but this is my whole new life. I need nothing formal (thank god) but am in dire need of inspiration for a guiding concept now.
What do Phoenixes wear when everything else has changed?

Undercover Phoenix.

Dear Undercover Phoenix,

This is a challenge indeed, but it seems to me that you’ve already made the hard lifestyle changes, and now comes the fun bit: finding an image that suits the new you. While other astro-info, including a person’s ascendant, moon and Venus signs are usually important in determining a cosmically compatible style, your total transformation and attitude are so Scorpionic, that your Sun Sign is enough to go by. The good news is that Scorpios are master transformers, so I’m fully confident that you’ll rise again.

I’m so glad that you’ve left the hippy style behind, because it’s too wishy-washy for Scorps and especially now when Mars and Saturn are coursing through your sign. When you’re undergoing a total transformation, it’s crucial to visualise the look you want. So maybe start by making a mood-board with words and images that inspire you. The slicker Gucci and Calvin Klein styles are good starting points, but I’d advise you not to focus solely on models or celebrities because you don’t want to become a second-rate imitation of them, but fully yourself. Instead, think also about striking animals, flowers, paintings or photographs, and then you can begin to hunt out these shapes and colours. Snakes, beetles and other armoured insects with intricate yet crystal-clear silhouettes and mesmerising patterns are especially are great faunal Muses for Scorps, while piercing autumnal tones including poppy-red, topaz and forest greens are good alternatives to the Scorp perennial: black.

We all know which body part Scorpio rules! And Scorp-ladies often have shapely waists, abdomens, hips and thighs- in other words they’re made for pencil skirts. Even if you don’t need formal-wear, you can always dress it down with a fitted t-shirt or open-necked shirt. As a general rule, something tailored and sharp with something undone maximises your Scorp-appeal. You should look queenly and understated simultaneously. With make-up, play up one feature at a time and leave the rest natural. Most Scorps have amazing eyes and lips that need minimal enhancement. When it comes to hair, loose or an undone chignon styles are winning.

Shoes and underwear should also be sleek and feminine, and often a good starting point for metamorphosis, because they physically make you feel different in your own skin. You’ll really suit lace, but try tightly woven quasi Elizabethan lace in dark or autumnal patterns rather than the white twee stuff. Some people say that Scorps are made for bondage wear, but I don’t buy it! Who needs costume when you’re naturally sexy? When it comes to shoes you can really have fun with pointed-toe flats, stiletto heels or 1960s-style stack heels, which are much easier to walk in, and almost any kind of lace-up boot for the winter.

Now, how are you going to acquire your transformation togs? Online is a good place for browsing a whole amazon of styles at multiple price-points. I’m not much of an online-shopper myself because often stuff looks completely different live to the way it does on-screen and I can’t stand the disappointment. But it works well for a lot of my friends, especially when they know a brand well. However, for you, I’d suggest looking online at the websites of a few (live) shops within your price-range and when you see something that catches your eye, pay the shop a visit. If you can, go at a quiet time when you won’t be distracted by hordes of other shoppers or impatient sales assistants.

It will be hard the first time, but try to take in and enjoy the experience of surveying and trying-on clothes, taking your time to make sure they fit well and suit the new you. While you might be tempted to make this a solo activity, in time, why not find a shopping confidante, whose opinion you trust? This might be a stylish, helpful salesperson or one of your new friends, who can give you the confidence that you’re projecting the image you want.

Good luck with your mission!

Libra Dress Historian x

Katerina Pantelides is a dress historian and writer living in London. A Libra with Neptune rising, she is interested in the relationship between fashion, beauty and the occult.

If you have any astrological fashion dilemmas that you would like to be answered on the blog by our Libra Dress Historian, please send them to [email protected]

Image: Steven Meisel – Devon Aoki – Vogue Italia

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fallen angel

Yep, I can’t resist though a bit late to the game.. I agree with EEL on breaking down your wardrobe needs by the time:activity ratio. It would make uber sense to invest most in the clothing you’ll be spending the most time in OR the most quality time in. I’ve no idea what you do, so am not sure of your occupational wardrobe needs. You said Calvin Klein/Gucci. As with any evolution, I think creating a wardrobe takes time and several handy mindsets you can alternate from as you grow your new outer skin. I personally would NEVER shop with… Read more »


Thank you Mystic for introducing me to Ian ! He is absolutely Awesome !!!!! And he gave me & some other close friends the best weekend & info that they needed


I have/had Pluto in Cap squaring my Aries sun (9th house) and opposing my Cancer moon (11th house). Also transiting Pluto in Cap (6th house) squaring natal Pluto in Libra (3rd house). I’ve noticed changes since summer 2010. My best friend moved out of town, daughter got her license so no need to chauffeur and more free time for me, forced to change doctors several times (kept retiring on me), health problems, changed health habits… quit smoking & junk foods, daughter graduated and moved out, I moved back to hometown, got rid of nearly all my stuff, no longer have… Read more »

Virgo Ellie

I love how astrology can help with fashion shopping. I definitely have been changing my style. I live in a warm climate area so I have to show skin. WooHoo… for someone who lived in large t-shirts most of her life unless I was at work. Very conservative dresser for work. Now.. with my short skirts flying up like Marylin Monroe, bikinis and I was recently at Macy’s (Marshalls” too) and found some fun skin showing tops.. even bought a cute respectable leather skirt last w/e. I love Leo’s and Scorpios because they are so prim and proper when they… Read more »


I would love a name and country change. To completely Phoenix your life. There does come a time when your skin must shed and represent where your at in your life. I constantly donate my clothes even items I still love and cherish. Just seems like this process is my Phoenix format. Learning to enjoy each stage of your own evolution is key, no matter how painful it feels. I don’t really enjoy clothes shopping, I tend to just measure it against my skin and go. All those mirrors in a tiny space, for a tall person makes you feel… Read more »


Cats get outa jail, again!


Hello Katman,
How the allsorts are you?
Yeah the non on the ball umpire decision with 2 minutes on the clock.

From the KatKave

How is ya goin? Clothes…. wearing em is important; apparently. MM should let me pick some yangish topics for discussion. I like it that some of you guys have some intrest in boys stuff.

Crows should win. I just got back fr footy. I played 8mins. Nearly got 4 kicks, 2 hand passes and 1 tackle. But l actually got nothing. Still next oldest player is 1.5 decades younger. So a bit of a laff


Yes Allsorts should win.
Are you working up to 10 minutes on the field? You are fit enough to play, that says everything.
Yang stuff by Katman. Your comments always draw a smile, thank you Katman.
I was given the news it might take 6-12 months to get my medication right. That sounds ridiculous and I can’t help but think it’s a money making technique. I am more than my labels but it seems it’s a way to extort money from my health fund. Not sure what to do.

From the KatKave

Far efn out. Meds should work and work qikly. Big pharma and compnys like Monsanto and vested intrests like gun lobbies and Aust banks have everybody eating out of their hands.
Dont change ya country, change ya Psych or Doc.
Poser: why is it that when you steal one person’s work, its plagiarism but when use you lots of ppl’s work, its research.


What to do when you want a better life, but the professionals want to keep you in a holding pattern. Your health fund is being charged for you to go to a day group. It’s not group therapy but a course. I could get the same result with a self help book. I can only expect a 20% increase in my symptoms.


*20% improvement in symptoms.


Wishd l could say something. Dunno what could help. Hope my silly comments lighten things up.


Thank you Katman. I’d like the name of a good shrink in my hood.


I think you should keep your name.


Hey S. I’m sure that you’ve probably tried a lot of things, so apologies now for maybe asking the obvious. Have you tried to get acupuncture by a TCM practitioner on your health fund? I’m not suggesting you give up the drugs at all, but sometimes acupuncture can really work wonders or at the very least alleviate some symptoms.

From the KatKave

In the words of Harry Hoo (“Get Smart” comedy device functionary) “Amayzin”.


Is Undercover Phoenix in Australia? Sydney? If yes, I can help her.
If no… hopefully she finds someone close by her to take her shopping and guide her.


There are so many fantastic ideas here! Vision board, personal shopper, second-hand, building around a few key elements and knowing what is important to you all stand out for me as great hints. What strikes me, is that you are approaching this project as if it needed to be all done at once, and therefore is too big and scary to tackle. It doesn’t need to be this way. Example: find ten articles of clothing in your closet that are a no-brainer: they need to go. If you can find a place to sell them (I have several shops near… Read more »


Also: I would try a visualization where you picture the perfect clothes for you actually *trying to find you*. I do that when I look for a new place to live. And guess what? It’s always the case.

Which reminds me: it’s important to do the clearing of the ten items *before* the acquiring of the two- energetically you are making a space for those new clothes to step into. They will be more willing to find you if you have made a space for them to live.


I agree with this. I was looking for a Breton top for ages but I wanted a particular brand that had a bit of length to it and couldn’t afford one. I went to a festival in the summer and found one abandoned in a hedge. This has happened so many times it’s crazy. I moved into a place on my own last year and needed a clothes-drier, an ironing board, a curtain pole and I found them all on the same day in a skip. Think about what you need and it will arrive. 🙂

Lux Interior is My Co-Pilot

There’s some nice stuff/ideas fodder to be found here:



I’m not a Scorp but I so feel you on the indignity of public shopping. Yuck. I think that you can take care of a lot of this fairly painlessly if you go through your existing wardrobe and figure out exactly what you liked about the things you’ve worn the crap out of. Just because the high-end hippie vibe doesn’t work for you anymore doesn’t mean that the actual cut of a long-loved garment isn’t spot on. I know that I suit bias cut dresses and shirttail hemmed tops and slim cut jeans that aren’t too spandexy and that I… Read more »


do you make it to europe ever? in both Paris and Milan there are fabulously discounted biannual sales –often late Jan and late June — more or less the whole city participates — i’m sure you can find out more details but it is truly worth a trip for some fabulous staples

best wishes to you

Electric Eel Libran

Congrats on the shedding of ye olde skin! I’ve phoenixed at least 4 or 5 times during my life. My tip to live by: 24 X 7 = number of hours in a week = W Write down the number of hours you will spend doing your activities: 3 hrs for zumba (include your commute time or your #s will be funky) 7 hrs commute time picking up kids from private school(back and forth) 56 hrs sleeping etc…. Make sure your total = W or you gonna have a problem. Divide each of these numbers by W to calculate percentage… Read more »


Also, congratulations on massive life changes. all the outward signs have changed, yes. Residence, name, social circles, job. Maybe more phoenixing for your insides? Comparing your physique to ‘real housewives’ has to be a sign that a particular way of seeing yourself has to go the way of your old name, old job, old house, old …friends(?). Also that anxiety shopping thing. Ditch that.

Hey you could always do your shopping in a different city where no one knows you.


We have some great shops with high end threads at better prices. Some retailers have outlets too- and deeply discount at end of season. My Scorp mom to work transformation is slim skirt with ballet type top- altars with a blazer/jacket. Winter – fun tights. I can shorten the skirt with darker legs. I mix soft/tailored. Chignon with fun/sparkly hair pins. Always good, simple earrings. Even on jean Friday I wear a blazer. No one ever asks me to cover the switchboard. I would not mind doing it- but I play the game of looking more front office than behind… Read more »


Agree times a million re: What Not to Wear. Come on, Stacey and Clinton. Not everyone wants to look like they work in PR.


Indeed, MM2!

Scorporation, Inc.

I too wish for a wardrobe overhaul & *hate* shopping for clothes. Besides, I already know what I want to wear & I’m pretty sure I won’t find it at any local retailer: Alexander McQueen couture– to work, grocery shopping, bake sales at my son’s school, you name it, that’s all I want to wear. So, please send me your discarded feathers, faux leather swatches, lacey table covers & silk sheets, & just like my phoenix act I’ll make my wardrobe fabulous myself.


I envisage: full length skirt made from black feathers like a waterfall (ensuring no Big Bird comparisons) white cotton handmade lace blouse, all lace that is – no stupid modesty panels, hair raked back, cuff on wrist made from a medieval sword, sandals made from black grosgrain ribbon.
And maybe a stage or catwalk to match , heh


The feathers would need to be hand-harvested offerings from peacocks and ravens, and phoenixes of course

Scorporation, Inc.

Ooh yes, Pi 🙂 I esp love weaponry fashioned into chic accessories. Catwalk, definitely. And matching headdress for my steed.


I can’t tell if my description sounds crazy but I have a specific style in my head and it is awesome. I think the sole band of dark metal/ cold steel on the wrist is the secret main event 🙂
I wonder if ancient things carry memories of the lives they have despatched. Hmm.

Scorporation, Inc.

Doesn’t Kali wear a necklace of skulls? I so agree with you: the wrist cuff would be the Everything!


Omg yes!! You so exactly need to be on a horse. Skirt will be perfect. You ok w sidesaddle?
Horse’s hooves are inscribed with secret text that is the pass-word for the thresholds into other worlds (silver ink, written by the blacksmith who shoes the horse with the same steel used to make your cuff)

The ravens who donated their feathers live in the roof of the stable where you keep Horse, so they were already friends and happy to send a few more that way. 🙂

Scorporation, Inc.

Holy shiz, Pi: Awesome! Love x10 the inscriptions on the hooves, & one freemason who fashions horse & I both with his strong hands… *whew*

My 12th house Lilith can’t bear side-saddle, but my dress will have plenty of material to allow for freedom of movement.

Love it, Pi 🙂 You have a gift.


Can we get pix of your overhaul please Undercover Phoenix? I am a sucker for a ‘transformation’. 🙂


– I just LOVE transformations, too. Like, Pimp My Ride is one of my favourite shows… 😉 Now, I *did* come talk about myself, a little, because I’m kind of in the same sitch – but it’s not a new wardrobe I’m after: it’s a new body. And I can’t believe the direction I’m heading: body building and plastic surgery. (well, “non-surgical” procedures – but my mind is all over the plastic, too) I have never enjoyed a day of my life – a month away from 35. – I won’t even go into it, here. But I’m aiming for… Read more »


Iris you need to talk to Invicta! She holds a medal in the body building area.
🙂 daresay she knows more about surgery than I do too. I wouldn’t mind a nip ‘n’ tuck. I am hyper mobile – ligaments and skin.


Which is why I want plastic and why it is not such a great idea too…


fellow scorpio on a phoenix mission indeed. Is there anything more dire to (ad)dress than an inner self after shedding a giant skin? its more frustrating than hair colour or weight flux. Love the advice about the expensive boho, you were not from Sydney by any chance living in the eastern suburbs? its like a uniform there. Slick, timeless and effortless screams saturn transit. The best thing about that look is yes the pieces can be quite simple but the styling is key, which may piss you off hunting around on line for fit, quality and styling vs individual pieces.… Read more »


Genius advice and thank you. Am In a serious Phoenix mode: Double Cappie, moon, mars, saturn in Scorpio, Venus in Aqua. Approaching Saturn return and dealing with Pluto on my ascendant and Sun. But … It’s all pretty good, actually. I’m ready for a change. Like above, am shedding the airy yoga chick skin for something altogether more — More disciplined, more considered, more Haute Capricorn ( on a Zara budget).

Is venus in Leo on Jupiter in 7th H good for a hair makeover, beauty treatment?

Thanks again, MS.

Drowning Capricorn


the time is right for any makeover born of genuine authenticity to move on into a new skin, I am gem rising scorpio so phoenixing transformations of the masks from a meaningful place is my astro kit. You’ve got a pluto trip happening. Nothing wrong with yoga life but as a look is it necessary? your foundations are your skin, body, hair etc. the whole look must come into account. No one has money to burn right now doll I know ex models married to investment bankers who are buying from asos so its not about the money, ever, its… Read more »


Thank you for the encouragement! Namaste, xo

yellow status

Best of luck, you are so brave, and congratulation’s on your progress – you will know what is right for you – your inner sole will tell you if you comfortable and or un comfortable. If not there will be a dream and you will see your NEW you.

I trying to get where you are with Total change… but… I still on my journey which as you know NOT FUN.

cheers YS


Same YS. It’s pluto (square moon) & Uranus (conjuncting it, & my natal moon-Jupiter-NN conjunction). No results yet, I’m still in the ashes settling phase before any rebirth (‘phoenix’ is my word of the year). One way in which I know I’m making progress is that I’m completely sick of my clothes too. But my gosh, a new country, income & friends is exactly what I’m aiming for! Thanks for the inspiration Undercover Phoenix.




i know it’s not practical obvs bla but my specialty is coaching people who are wierd about shopping, through a maze of crappy attire, into the things that they fecking love, and attending to blood-sugar levels at the same time.

Scorp wardrobe phoenix, take a friend who is honest and who loves you if (for reasons I cannot fathom) shopping bothers you.

research first. no shopping required. sniff out the good people, material goods, and shopfronts.


omg, the first thing I thought when I read this post was ‘Pi would be all over this!’


Aww thanks alien! Hope you’ve been well btw 🙂 xox


My life has been all about study, sleep-hygiene, & squats – boring, but necessary… I’m getting used to it, but I do miss surfing the net in the wee hours of the morning! xox


Oooh, I want to go shopping with you! I used to work in a costume shop and I loved getting people to try on clothes that unleashed a hidden persona and have fun with it. Most of the time though the women just wanted to look ‘hot’, and the men, to not stand out. Plus, my god, I never realised just how many women had issues with their bodies until then. And I’m a woman! Clothes can make a real difference to your sense of self when you find the pieces that enhance it.

Virgo Ellie

O.M.G… I would be all over this too. Right now I use the Personal Shoppers at Macy’s. Not zee best counselors for fashion.. but it was a start. Do you ever have a specific idea in your head as to what you want and it is a nightmare of time trying to find it? That is me. I have these fashion ideas and I can’t find them. I asked myself “Self:.. should you start sewing”… I tried it when I was little… Just didn’t fit my attention span. But good job, Pi. What you are doing is so needed out… Read more »

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