#lovetheclothesyouhave: Halfway There?
by Alison Gerber
(This is me today, wearing my “L’Amour” sweater I bought from H&M three years ago, and have only worn outside of the house once.)
Well I’ve crossed the halfway mark of my self-imposed challenge to love the clothes I already own. I’ve learned a few things already, about clothing and about myself, and thought this would be a good moment to pause and reflect on what I’ve discovered so far.
1. A little meditation on my closet can help me make wiser decisions in the future.
I realized the majority of my unworn or rarely worn clothes are red. So: I either need to work out how to wear red clothes, or stop buying red clothes altogether. One of the problems I encountered in forcing myself to wear red, was that I only own three types of sweaters: green sweaters, yellow sweaters and purple sweaters. These are my favorite colors and whenever I see a sweater in these colors I can’t help myself!
But here’s the problem: green+red=Christmas, yellow+red=McDonalds and purple+red=those weird hat ladies. So I need to branch out in my sweater wearing. To do so would make a whole range of unworn shirts and dresses in my closet suddenly wearable. I would never have thought this had I not forced myself to make outfits out of these unworn things.
2. I think I have a weird aversion to wearing things more than once.
When I was a kid in 8th grade, I went to a camp for gifted students from across the state and I bunked with a very wealthy girl who came from the inner city. She was so rich she never wore play clothes more than once, and at the end of the first day she threw her outfit in the trash. I was horrified!
But you know what? Maybe I didn’t end up so different to that 8th grade girl. I love to create outfits, and every now and then I’ll stumble on something great, but am loathed to wear that exact outfit again. This necessitates more purchasing of clothes to create outfits afresh…or does it? The last couple of days have reminded me of the vast possibilities within those clothes I already have, and also that real creativity happens when possibilities are not limitless, but constrained. I found myself trying out new things, new combinations, simply because I had to, instead of creating the easy way (i.e. via the mall).
3. I remembered the best fashion asset I own doesn’t exist inside my closet at all.
Sometimes I can get so fixated on what I am wearing, I forget what I am already wearing: the face God gave me! I often feel like my face is something to dress up or hide, with jewelry or crazy glasses or makeup. But the other day, as I took one of my self-imposed selfies, I thought: “Hey face! I forgot about you! You’re actually pretty!”
Now, please hear me on this: I’m not telling you this so you can all chime in on your feelings about my face. I like my face all by myself, I don’t need the extra encouragement. But I do want you to ask yourself, fashion-nerd friends, do you also realize that you are beautiful, no matter what you wear? Because, if you are a friend of mine, I know you are. There isn’t a single person I have in my life I wouldn’t say that to in full honesty. Enjoy your face. You are gorgeous.
Lots of love as always,
PS. If you want to know a little more about what I’ve been doing this week, see the post below. It is a challenge to wear an unworn/rarely worn item from your closet, and to not buy clothes for one week. If you are behind, don’t worry, you can still join in tomorrow if you like!