But where will I wear it?
A few weeks ago, I’m walking through Nordie’s with a friend of mine. This girl is beautiful. I mean, just jaw-dropping gorgeous. She’s got a great career, great husband, great life… all of it. We’re window shopping – or at least that’s what we told ourselves – gabbing and laughing and generally just loving life. Making a beeline for the formal wear, we ooh and aah over the floor length satin gowns. I let out a squeal over a knee length Kors sequin number that makes my heart skip a beat. From behind me, I hear her gasp. As I turn, I see my friend pluck up what can only be described as a ridiculously gorgeous tea-length dress. Black with lace trim, defined waist… the kind of dress that would make even the likes of Kate Middleton swoon.
I sigh at it, nodding my approval. “Try it on,” I urge. She bites her lip, thinking. “Nah, I don’t want to fall in love with it.” “Why not! I’m already in love with it!” “I have nowhere to wear it. Where would I wear it?” I stop, and look at her. “To the damn grocery store! Who cares! If you love it and it makes you happy, you buy it.” She smiles, and I can tell she’s picturing it. The way it would make her feel. The day she could have in it. But then, like someone slapped her hand, she shakes her head and puts it back on the rack.
A prime example of an outfit I bought because it made me feel amazing
I’ve been through this scenario way too many times to count. It seems like there’s some epidemic hitting the world, leaving amazing, wonderful women feeling like they don’t deserve what they want. Like they don’t deserve to wear that dress or those shoes. As someone who worked in fashion, I am a slave to the theory that yes; the world is a runway and yes, I must dress accordingly whenever I damn well please. There doesn’t need to be a pending event for me to buy that dress or those shoes – running to the grocery store to pick my dog up some treats is reason enough to wear Swarovski-encrusted shoes. I am that girl who will go to work in a maxi skirt and a crop top just because I can.
But I get it. That’s me.
I think it’s time we address the bigger issue … why not you? Studies have shown, repeatedly, the powerful link between what you put on your back and your psyche. The power of fashion is amazing. And you know what? You deserve it. You deserve that dress, the one that will make you feel powerful/accomplished/sexy/strong/whatever. While I’m not advocating frivolous spending by any stretch of the imagination, I am advocating allocating a few bucks to your self-esteem. The famous Monroe quote “give a girl the right shoes, and she can conquer the world” isn’t full of crap.
Think about it. I mean, really think about it. Close your eyes and picture yourself in your favorite outfit. Maybe it’s the jeans with the perfectly-placed pockets that make your butt look awesome paired with that sexy-yet-modest fitted long-sleeve tee with a classic pair of high heels. Maybe it’s that sundress you wore on your beach vacation. Remember it. Remember how it made you feel. Now hold on to that mental image of yourself. So happy, so confident, so utterly… you.
Those memories live within the fabric of that garment. They live within the cotton fibers. The space between the thread and the buttons.
And you can go back to that memory, that feeling, every time you put it on. Now, imagine feeling that way again. Every day. That’s what I’m saying. The power to be anything – anything you want – starts with that item that you don’t know where to wear, or that you don’t think you deserve.
outfit details: beaded sequin peplum top x bebe | bandage skirt x INC via Macy’s | heels x Micheal Kors