Have you ever woken up and realized everything you thought you knew about something was just flat out wrong? Well, that was me and fashion. I’ve had other revelations, but this is the only relevant one now. Come, let me take you on a journey of self-discovery that starts with ill-fitting jeans and ends with some knee-high fantastic boots.
First some background. I was always tall for my age and sort of gangly and I have a very funny name in real life. The acorn of internet handles did not stray far from the tree of real names in that regard. It was sort of impossible for me to not draw some attention to myself. It doesn’t help that I have always been a bit of a mouthy broad. So for the longest time, I tried to ignore fashion. Plain is what I was aiming for. In general, I’d try my damnedest to not get involved in the whole fashion thing.
But that’s where I was shooting myself in the foot, so to speak. Acting and dressing like I am not interested in fashion says something about me, my thoughts, and how I wish to present myself. There is absolutely no way to opt out of this, minus getting rid of my body and just becoming a free floating orb, but the technology for that just isn’t there. Like it or not, no matter what I did with my physical appearance, I’d be sending some sort of message to the people who I meet.
Now, I embrace that. I was uncertain at first, awkwardly trying to navigate trends and blouses. Turns out, I can’t wear black near my face, I don’t do great in clothes without structure, and heaven help me if I ever try to use a curling iron again. My past is full of fashion missteps, like these old gray corduroy pants I wore until they practically fell apart, or the belief that bangs would look good on teenaged me. Yet, cheesy as it sounds, each misstep brought me closer to figuring out how to make my personality a part of my style.
I can’t speak for everyone, but part of my hesitant approach to embracing fashion was a lack of self-confidence. I was scared that if I immediately gave people a hint as to what I was about, they’d turn and run screaming in the other direction. Maybe not that severe, but they’d certainly not give me the time of day. I’m still a spring chicken, but as I’ve gotten older, I’ve realized that if I show people who I am from the get-go, it saves all of us a lot of time and trouble in the end. It helps that I’ve gotten a lot more OK with me.
How about you? Did you always have a distinct personal style or did it take a while to emerge? What do you think are the key pieces or adjectives that define your style?