Wednesday, 14 March 2012

So Awkward

I love clothes. Seriously, I mean I looooove clothes. I love that what you put on out of the surface can be an immediate sign to the world about who you are on the inside. This wasn't always true for me. I have a pretty tiny budget for clothing. For years I bought whatever was "cute" on clearance. (More is always better, right?) After years of having a million "cute" but disconnected items in my closet, I got tired of it. I started looking at my closet strategically. I pulled everything out and realized I had a ton of skirts, but only really wore two of them. I had way too many variations of tees but not many shirts or blouses. I had jeans I wore but didn't like. (Because, admit it, good jeans are rarely ever on clearance.) This list could go on, but you get my drift. Basically I had a big huge pile of clothing poo. Some of it was nice poo. Originally expensive but budget-savily bought on clearance poo. But still, poo.

There it is. The not-so-large apartment closet I share with Seth.  Made a bit better by the blue stone knobs Seth's sister picked up for me in a knob shop while she was living in London. She wrapped them up in an old tea box filled with little paper stars she folded herself and gave them to me for my birthday. She's kind of great like that.
As much as I love clothes, I still have a pretty tiny budget. Given my love affair with clothes, one approach would be to designate more out our paychecks for this area. The problem is that would mean taking money away from other areas in my life I find important: giving to charities I believe in, buying organic or fair trade items when possible, time spent out and about interacting with Seth and friends, enjoying this beautiful island I live on, the list goes on... So my clothing budget has remained tiny but in the end it's made me more creative and more thoughtful about what goes into my closet. In the past I had more that was all kind of "ehh" and didn't get worn that much. Now I have less but what I do have I love and I wear more.

That's it. That's all the closet space I've got in our little apartment.  Along with four dresser drawers (1. undies, 2.  jeans/shorts, 3. pajamas, 4. beach/work out clothes) all the clothes I own have to fit in that space.
So here comes the awkward (for me) part. I'm going to document my closet occasionally by posting what I wear and the thought process behind it. I don't know why that feels so extremely awkward to me, but it does. After much thought, I've decided I'm going to power through the awkwardness anyway. I've learned what I know by watching and observing other people. It only feels fair to pass that info on. This is less about "HEY EVERYBODY, LOOK AT HOW AWESOME I AM!" and more about why I make the choices I do, what a "working" closet looks like for me, and how I try to creatively put together outfits with what I have to create my own personal style.

I'm sort of analytical. I was always good at math, puzzles, whatever. I mean, seriously, I was in the public school gifted program growing up. That should still mean something, right? After years of skipping English once a week to go put together 3D puzzles, create paper airplanes that could perform well in tests of both distance and ingenuity, and help solve the failing world economy, what do you expect? I look at my closet as a puzzle needing to be solved. I look at everything as a puzzle needing to be solved. (And, as you might expect from all that skipped English, I'm terrible at grammar. Have you noticed, yet my severe, overuse, of commas. No? You, will.) And I'm a lot closer to solving it than I was when I just bought whatever was available on the clearance rack. And I start a lot of sentences with and. (Stupid skipped English classes. What good are paper airplane skills with you're 32?)

One of my best moves ever? Banishing flip-flops! Also let it be known that there are more shoes than meet the eye.
If you have one of those closets that you stand in front of feeling like you have nothing to wear, hopefully I can help. If you're trying to live off a smaller budget or want to know how to make smarter purchases, hopefully I can help. If you'd like to have a true-to-you personal style and have no idea where to start, hopefully I can help. If you'd like to create a paper airplane that will perform well in tests of both distance and ingenuity, hopefully I can help. (The key is paper clips, not straws.)

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