Yesterday, at the urging (Kind of a strong term—it took about two seconds of conversation.) of my fabulous friend and her roommate, I purchased a full-length dress in the exact material featured above. I would attempt to post a picture of the whole thing, but I am admittedly terrible with cameras and no one is around to help me. But I think you get the aesthetic.
There were only a few years when I fell into the depressing ritual of purchasing and wearing jeans and boring shirts or things from The Gap. It hurts to even attempt to remember those days.
Since then, I have slowly developed a “fuck all” approach to shopping and dressing myself. By the end of high school, I had finely whittled my philosophy down to the inspirational, rhetorical, incredulous question, “Why wouldn’t you buy that?”
And let me tell you, it is fun for everybody. It’s fun for me. It’s fun for my friends. It’s especially fun for the strangers who get to see everything I try on and hear my rationalizations for fringe suede hot pants. For me, fashion and clothing are harbingers of joy and satisfaction, and it genuinely makes me sad when I shop with someone or see someone suffering through the process miserably, be it because they grow frustrated over sizing and fit, or because they’re expecting some specific outcome.
This is probably because my mother instilled in me the belief that no matter where it’s from or what you think you may need it for, a dress should be bought if it fits well and makes you feel comfortable and like your best self. Granted, I do have too many dresses because of this, but I also have a very relaxed approach to shopping and getting outfitted, and I also don’t get down on myself when something doesn’t work.
That’s what “Why wouldn’t you buy that?” is about. In my case, it does result in a large collection of hot pants in varying materials, bustiers, many men’s shirts that make my father worry (They’re mine, I swear!), a full-fringe jacket, five-inch platforms, etc. These are the items that entertain me and give me a boost of confidence, and I wouldn’t have them if I thought too rigidly about what I need to buy.
So maybe you’ll find that you are actually the type of person who feels best in jeans and t-shirts. It completely works for Shane on “The L Word.” Maybe you are partial to sundresses (not just women). And maybe you are actually Chuck Bass and should absolutely never be seen in anything but suits and silk robes. It really doesn’t matter at all. I like sequins, glitter, and unique materials. You don’t have to.
I’m not saying it’s even necessary to have a large wardrobe (Mine is only that way 1) because I have a problem and 2) I have a lot of coupons.). The only thing that’s necessary is to have an open mind when setting out to buy whatever you need, and never to settle for an item because it’s sort of ok. You won’t like it. You’ll wear it because you think you have to because you did pay for it, but you’ll be miserable and want to change out of it immediately. Why suffer? Life is hard enough. Your clothes shouldn’t be.
(And yes, all of this does apply to haircuts, tattoos, piercings, makeup, or pretty much anything else a magazine might try to dictate.)