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Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Where are the fashion police when I need them most?

Have you ever just worn the absolute wrong thing? You know when you've done it because it's pretty fricckin' obvious the moment you arrive all decked out in what you may have thought was your most brilliant fashion choice EVER. What a massive mountain of regret it can be.

Well, as you may (or may not) have guessed, I have a terrible habit and a LONG history of doing just this. As a child I always wanted so badly to dress myself, and having a mother who was having absolutely none of that, I think as an adult I developed this "you (meaning society) don't tell me how to live my life" attitude about clothes. I am ashamed to say this "mom dressing me" thing lasted through high school so by the time I got to college I didn't really know the first thing about developing a style of my own. I remember even my senior year, mom taking out the LL Bean catalogue and telling me to pick out the colors of the boxy, oversized polos (she always ordered me a size or 2 too big) I would get to wear for the next 9 months.  Shopping at the Gap or American Eagle was not much of an option for me unless I wanted to buy my own clothes. Which I did manage to do from time to time, but really had no idea what I was doing. Case in point: the first clothing items I bought with my own money were a long-sleeved tie-dye shirt with a giant heart on the front of it, a purple leather jacket (which got stolen, thank God - I'm pretty sure said thieves were the fashion police), and a pair of bright orange Asics (for style, not because I ran because I didn't); all of which I would wear TOGETHER. That was my favorite outfit for longer than I'd like to admit.

I admire the crap out of people who just put it all out there and can be completely confident in whatever they wear, and I think my rationale behind some of my fashion choices has been, "well, even if I end up looking ridiculous, my sparkling personality will SURELY outweigh the fact that my outfit sucks."  I remember, at the age of 12, I went through confirmation at my church. Let me start by saying that the day before confirmation Sunday, I had spent the whole day at a pool party with no sunscreen. So I show up for the ceremony and ALL of the other little girls are wearing white dresses. But me? I'm wearing a black dress with hot pink and purple flowers all over it, puffy sleeves, AND my skin is a brilliant Carrie-esque blood red sunburn. I FULLY blame my mom for this fashion choice as I know she was humiliated when she realized she didn't get the memo about everyone wearing white, but guess who ended up looking like the resident dumbass (hint - it wasn't her). I'm pretty sure the whole congregation, along with God, were embarrassed for me.

So all of this leads me to my adult life. I can honestly say that at 32, I still have no idea what I'm doing in terms of fashion half the time. And I still make the mistake of showing up in jeans at the absolute wrong time AT LEAST once a month. Wouldn't it be nice if a dress code were sent out for every occasion, from a work meeting to a bachelorette party to a wedding shower? I've gone to showers where everyone was dressed in their Sunday best, and others where folks wore jeans and sneakers, and I showed up in just the opposite thing everyone else was wearing. Why can't there be a general code of conduct for things that states something to the effect of: "Everyone can wear whatever they want whenever they want, so long as it is pleasing to the eye." Why are we as society so bound by dress codes? And why don't I ever seem to get the memos?

If I could have it my way, I wouldn't wear jeans anyway. I'd wear yoga pants, tank tops, hoodies and fuzzy boots everywhere. Suck it, fashion police!

1 comment:

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