I can’t believe it took me 31 years to realize I should just wear what I like. I shouldn’t be worried about showing too much; if someone has a problem with my cute crop top or unlined bra, that’s about them, not about me. I shouldn’t ask myself if my love for campy fringe is too much… too much for whom? and of course it is, that’s what makes it camp! This outfit might not seem like much of a statement, but stepping out in it, and feeling more confident than ever, was a big step for me and symbolic of the changes I’ve been trying to make for myself.
Maybe it’s the roller derby – and spending the last six months feeling my body become stronger and faster – but I felt great in this: the first crop top I have ever purchased. I wore it to a barbecue and didn’t feel the usual need to cover up or apologize for my female figure, like I’ve been trained to do since that summer my legs grew several inches and the boys noticed before I did.
I fell in love with the perfect black fringe and brightly coloured pom pom trim of these sandals the second I saw them last summer, but didn’t buy them because I was worried they would be too bold to fit in with my current wardrobe. When I saw that they were on clearance this spring, and about to slip through my fingers, I realized that I was being silly and if I loved something that much, it was obviously part of my core style. I have since worn them so often, they have found a permanent position on the little mat by my front door because of course they suit me.
I’ve had to learn, over the past two decades, to trust my taste, learn to stop fretting over other people’s expectations and opinions about my body and the way I choose to decorate it (because it’s super weird that they feel the need to tell me, anyway) and, really, learn how to be myself.
All photos by me.
I’ve always wanted to be one of those people who is organized enough to own a favourite piece of clothing in multiple colours. I never seem to be on the ball enough to go back and grab the same style in a second hue or print after falling in love with the first. I’ve also always wondered, while watching others do it, if this makes good wardrobe building sense.
I bought this skirt from ModCloth a couple of years ago, in yellow, and immediately loved it. I love the colour, the cut, the way it moves and the way I can style it to suit every season. I get compliments nearly every time I wear it and it’s always the first thing I toss in my suitcase when packing for an adventure. I’ve already had to mend it twice and will be utterly heartbroken when it dies.
I’ve been aware since I bought the skirt – and agonized over the colour choices – that ModCloth sells the style in a rainbow of colour options. I’ve kept the notion that I might buy it again tucked in my back pocket but never thought I would pull the trigger; the fashion world is so vast and life’s too short to explore the same place twice, right? But then I saw my beloved skirt on sale, in red, and decided to see what this complete collection thing was all about.
Let me say, I’m so glad I did. I love this skirt as much as the first! The neat thing is, I already know exactly how to wear it… because I sort of already owned it. It seem to me to make good sense when assembling a wardrobe, even on a budget. You know it’s going to work with your overarching style, and match the other pieces already in your collection, because you’ve previously tested it. The longevity of the new investment seems solid too. The risk of the new piece falling out of style or you falling out of love with it are low when the rewards of old one have been so great.
I think I’ve been converted to this way of thinking and shopping. Maybe I’ll become one of those people with the gorgeously curated closet holding a full rainbow of their favourite pieces.
Stockings What Katie Did
All photos by me.