I think it’s time for all of us to stop looking at clothes with such a critical eye and start having more fun with it. Yes, fashion is currently one of the most profitable industries in our economy and we also live in a society where there is only one beauty standard to strive for. Yet, there are no official set of rules that tell us how we should wear our clothes.
Many of us (myself included) probably wore certain pieces because they flatter our body shape – a.k.a. make you look slimmer, taller, etc. There is nothing inherently bad with trying to display your figure in the best way you possibly can under your own personal style - what does bug me is when we are made to believe that we need to stray away of our taste in clothes in order to look somewhat presentable.
There is an underlying social pressure that makes people feel uncomfortable when they don’t look their best. We receive many secret messages that seem to imply that in order to be attractive we need to dress a certain way. If we want to be taken seriously, we need to portray ourselves in a certain manner. A creative person dresses like “X”, a business person like “Y”, and so on.
With all this information, I realised that we are all just conditioned to believe we aren’t worthy to dress like we would want to. I had a friend at school whose mother wouldn’t allow her to wear dresses because she thought that her daughter was too fat for it, that they didn’t flatter her figure. My friend really liked fashion and liked to be girly, she wanted to wear a dress for herself, not for other people! I remember letting her wear one of my dresses in the summer and she looked great – the dress fitted well, but the reason she looked great is because she looked happy.
I remember this anecdote well because I think it was back then when I first glimpsed society’s flattering standards and I didn’t like it. Quite the opposite, I completely defied it. I am very lucky to have been raised by a mother that didn’t put me in a box - I dressed in extremely oversized boys clothing as a child and my family never made me feel inadequate. Seeing a friend being denied of something as simple as wearing a dress made me realise that judgement has no age limit.
I express myself and my feelings with clothes, some days I like to be feminine and romantic, other days I dress exactly as I used to when I was 10 years old with baggy trousers and tops. Sometimes I wear make-up and sometimes I don’t and that doesn’t affect how hard or little I will work that day! Having the freedom tonot look my “best” is still one of the biggest accomplishments I reached in my personal life.
That doesn’t mean that I don’t like to wear clothes that make me feel put together, it just means that I can also feel good when I wear shapeless jumpers and granny shoes. Life is too short to not dress up with whatever the heck you wanna wear in your life!