It’s confession time.
I was a fashion disaster. In early grade school my stirrup pants weren’t long enough to reach my feet, so the stirrups hung around my calves. In 6th grade my mom decided to stop cutting my hair herself. She took me to the JCPenney hair salon (fancy, I know) where they cut my ringlets super short. Very curly hair, no gel. Picture a 5’11” girl with a faux-fro…what do you see? An oversized Little Orphan Annie (or Allie, in this case)?
I’ve had big bangs, leg warmers, and brown corduroy shoes. I’ve worn acid wash high-waters and pants with elastic waists. See, a disaster! :)
Then…I discovered the JCrew catalog. Not to make this too dramatic, but I really love JCrew. My first major purchase (beside my Reebok Pumps, of course) was a JCrew fisherman sweater. When I was in high school I found out that JCrew planned on opening a store in our outlet mall, so I called headquarters in Virginia to find out about the interviews. It wasn’t my answer to their “if you could be one thing in a grocery store, what would you be?” question (answer: “Ice cream, because I’m sweet and everyone likes me.” **choke** **cough**), it was that I knew that from which catalog the interviewer’s sweater came. They saw that I loved the product enough to be able to sell it.
From then on, fashion has been my passion (rhyming too, apparently). It can be a way for us to express ourselves. Fashion is an art form that feels accessible to me.
Full disclosure: just because I’ve loved fashion, doesn’t mean I’ve always been fashionable. I used to seriously struggle with body image. There were periods when I just didn’t like myself enough to try very hard. I didn’t put effort into dressing because the result was always the same…me telling myself I looked chubby. Worst feeling ever, especially since I was talking that way to myself.
I’m completely relieved and maybe a little proud to say that I’ve gotten through all that. I feel healthy, happy, and (mostly) confident. Time, persistence, and support from family and friends have made all the difference. I’m in such a good place. I don’t want to diminish how difficult it was to shut off the negative, defeating voice in my head; it was intense, long work. But I got through it – I’m on the other side. It makes me want to cry just writing that. Self-respect and confidence are better than I ever could have imagined.
So…now I try. I love myself enough to take the time to look put together and to find tall clothes that flatter my frame. I don’t always look fantastic, but some days I’m happy with the outfits I create. Those are what I’d like to share with you, and I’d love for you to share your outfit shots with me.
Outfit of the Day photos to come…
P.S. If you made it this far through the post I’m thankful (and impressed). I tried to edit extensively because there was a really long list of grade school fashion catastrophes. It still turned out long. So, thank you so much for reading!