September 8, 2013

My Rocky Relationship With Fashion

What Mandy Thinks: "Real Person Chronicles" post
Here's how I used to define fashion: A bunch of stuck-up snooty people comparing unnecessarily expensive outfits with outrageous and ironic adjectives just so they can one-up each other in all that is catty and bitchy.

That's how judgmental fifteen-year-old Mandy puts it.  Her twenty-something self is not cool with this lumping of all fashionable women as catty, bitchy, and entitled just because they want to look good and show off what they like.  I thought those who kept up with trends were trying to embody fashion not express it for themselves.  Now I know some use fashion in this way, and those are the ones who ruin it for the rest of us.

Fashion should be selfish, and that's not a bad thing.

What Mandy Thinks: Image of some of my clothes: "Of course I organize my hung-up clothes by color."
Of course I organized my hung-up clothes by color.
I used to wear clothes because... I knew I had to.  Since they were also ways to intentionally or unintentionally show my emotions, I ended up wearing a lot of black and gray, baggy jeans that never fit my growing lanky self, and Converse because they came in my shoe size. Period, end of story.  Everything had to be comfortable or I wasn't wearing it, no matter what it looked like.  I broke out a big white sweatshirt to stuff all my musky angst into a big puff of comfort.  I wore over-sized coats indoors because "I get cold easily" (which is true) but it hid what I didn't want to show (which was probably insecurity for my rockin' bod).  Beauty is skin deep, but I rejected beauty as something I was supposed to unrealistically strive for so I just didn't try or care.

With time and confidence comes change.  I'm realizing that beauty is still skin deep, but what we package it all up in on the outside doesn't define our insides and to just not care what everyone else defines us as since that is OUR decision.  I want to look good not for other people to compliment me on what I'm wearing or how good I look that day (though that does boost my mood), but to look good for me.  I have embraced almost all that is girly (still not the biggest fan of pink but what can ya do) and decided fashion is whatever I want it to be.  I'm getting more picky in shopping for clothes (though this decision is mostly because I'm nice and poor).  I'm figuring out what fits me best now that I've finally stopped growing and am managing my figure (sort of).  I'm finally using color as not just a decor thing but a clothes thing.  I may have always wanted my living space to look good, but now...

I want all the awesomeness that is my apartment thrown up on me so I can take it outside.

Here's a list (yay more lists!) as a reminder to myself of what I am looking for as the fashion representation of me and my publicly colorful, fashionable self from now on and for the foreseeable future:
  • Multi-colored prints of almost anything
  • Makeup matching outfits and moods
  • Bright solids of all sorts
  • Floral flowery flowers of flowerdom
  • Tribal and Native American inspirited patterns
  • Actually pay attention to types of fabrics
  • Purple, purple, purple, and more purple
  • Dresses, my dear DRESSES
  • Figure-flattering everything
  • Tights that actually fit in all the right places
  • Shoes, oh my god shoes
  • Tops that allow for BOOBY FREEDOM (no bra required)
  • Lacy lace
  • Polka dots and stripes are friends, not enemies

As my fifteen-year-old self scoffs at my closet, I'm happy to report I have given away or tossed most of my black and gray clothing.  There's only one black tank top in my dresser and a few gray things that are mostly cover-ups and vests.  That white poofy sweatshirt took its one-way-trip to the dump a long time ago, and anything over-sized is no more.  Look at me embracing fashion, who knew!

Excuse me while I figure out what I'm going to wear tomorrow...

What do you consider "fashionable?"  What kind of fashion or clothing or statement defines you?

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