Growing up, I was awkward and timid. The fear of standing out or being noticed, honestly kept me up at night. I just wanted to remain in the shadows. The shadows were my safe haven. The road to building self confidence has been long, hard, frustrating and is still on going. So often I just want to run back into the shadows but I remember why I took a step into the sunlight. I didn't want to be apologetic about my sense of style anymore!
As a society, we have created boundaries, standards and various norms that have become a mean way to govern and police each other. All actions and behaviours are closely monitored, scrutinised and sanctioned. We observe the same scrutiny in the fashion world, with social media, family and friends being the main enforcers. We have created a fashion landscape that in some ways encourages fashion conformity and discourages unrestricted creativity. We place so much pressure on ourselves and others to dress a certain way, to act a certain way and to be a certain way.
For me, the pressure to dress a certain way was enforced by family, growing up. The style ideas my family had for me were contrary to my own. I always found myself being apologetic about my style and working overtime to match up to their standards. It was a lot of hard work and no matter how much I tried they never seemed pleased! So I found myself resorting to the dark shadows, apologetic and unhappy, afraid to speak up. I realise now that all I really needed was the freedom to explore, learn and develop a style identity. I didn't need someone to dictate a look for me because it only confused me drew me deeper into my shell. I am still figuring it out but on my own terms.
This year I have made it my personal mission to explore and experiment with my style. Playing outside the 'so-called' fashion box and its restricting boundaries. I am learning that I do not have to be apologetic for the style choices I make or feel pressure to dress in a certain way. Fashion at its very core isn't about boundaries or restrictions, to me fashion celebrates creativity, uniqueness and individuality.
Creativity costs nothing, there is no right or wrong, just you. A lot of people think style creativity comes at a price, one needs to constantly buy new clothes or shoes. This isn't true! I am a girl on a budget and I have learnt to play around with clothes I already have to spare my wallet. I have so much fun trying to work out different ways to spice up my looks and keep them interesting. It can be challenging but its a challenge I can take on, any day! I have found that the key is to buy versatile pieces (high waist leggings, circle skirts, scarfs, blazers, jeans), that you can mix, interchange and switch with every look.
My theme this coming summer is magic. Using everyday clothes to create illusions that make people take a second look! For this post, I paired black high waist leggings, a long sleeved body top and a special piece from my mum's closet. Now this piece can be used as a scarf, a blankie, a wrap over or a poncho- whatever you need it to be. This piece gives my simple all black outfit an edge and a much needed pop of colour. I decided to wear it as a poncho that stood out and stunned.
Fashion can be so much fun, if we let it! Don't be afraid to explore different styles, experiment and try out different looks with the clothes you already have in your closet. Its okay not to have your style identity all figured it out, just keep an open mind and be willing to learn as you go. Style is what we make it! No rules no limitations just the freedom to be you, stylistically!
Will you come out and play with me this summer?