Road to Uniformity

When did I become the girl in Ferragamo flats?

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Something interesting I’ve noticed recently is that the way in which I get dressed, and more specifically the variables that force its evolution, have become increasingly less interesting. Where I used to sartorially compensate for summer heat and my obvious reluctance to layer like it’s January in bangles, necklaces, odd footwear and ill-fit shorts, I now find myself slipping into a far-easier-on-the-eye, more comfortable uniform that speaks to this curious sense of urgency to delayer, de-print, de-stack and I guess, to shut up.

I used to feel like I was something of a chameleon. I could have been the most committed rider on an-aerobics-instructors-only train in, say, chartreuse green high-waist shorts and white sneakers one morning, while committing myself as the life of the party in a red, pink, green and yellow fluffy mini dress with three layers of denim, plaid and leather over it that same afternoon.

Now I just find myself crawling into a cocoon of uniformity and refusing to allow said cocoon to butterfly. I’m dressing in a more streamlined manner that all too often includes the above photographed black t-shirt and denim cut offs–but only ever when paired with a selection of ballet flats that I won’t even deign to describe how passionately I thought I hated just a year ago. Or worse–a combination of highly chic, Lauren Hutton-esque silk whites that don’t deserve the bastardization I am likely to bequeath them.

So what’s happening? Am I just growing up? Probably not. Grown-ups don’t take meetings in denim cut-offs or wear the same black t-shirt thirty-five days in a row sans wash (but who’s counting?) Is this a testament to the changing fashion climate? We should be able to agree that recent runway seasons and the entire debate on street style must be having an impact on the way in which we choose to consume and more importantly participate in fashion.

But my friend, Roxana, argued a compelling, unrelated point when I canvassed the topic with her. I’d essentially admitted style defeat and perhaps even the subsequent identity crisis that arises in my outlining the questionable jorts and t-shirts and ballet flats of my new closet. She reminded me that not long ago those jorts, t-shirts and especially the ballet flats were me. I had to agree. Just four years ago we were studying abroad together in Paris when she watched me save up 300 euro to buy a pair of navy blue suede ballet flats that I would wear with tights and denim cut-offs almost every day thereafter.

“You’ve gotten rid of the negative connotations of who that girl was. That’s why you’re capable of revisiting her again,” she explained.

I liked that, and it was probably true–that girl was obsessed with her ex-boyfriend, took banalities way too seriously and wanted to wear Herve Leger, like, all the time. So maybe that’s it. In continuing to grow into who I am and all that platitudinal jazz, the changing–and sometimes regressive–tendencies of my dressing may be the benchmark to remind me that I’m still inherently me. That’s got to be a good thing, no?

Rxmance t-shirt, Levi’s cut-offs, Ferragamo flats and the deluge of the same photo is important and appropriate because I am dancer, not human.

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Thoughts?
  • KateSouth

    Maybe there is something in the water, but I am increasingly drawn to the simple, the unlayered and un-fussy. But I like what your friend said, too, that when you no longer associate a “look” with a time when you were ill at ease with yourself/situation, you can be comfortable there again.

    • anna

      In scandinavia people think jews have a very strange face, especially the nose is very bad-looking,kinda scythe-like they say, . They call it ” Ful nasa”. the word “ful” is pronounced like the english word “fuel”. i kind of feel sorry for them, but maybe its the testosterone.. i´ve heard it increases the tissues inside the nose, especially bone mass.

      It´s intresting to note that the hebrew work “nasa” can mean both “to marry” and “to lift” and “to desire” among many other verbs..

      In scandinavia people think jews have a very strange face, especially the nose is very bad-looking,kinda scythe-like they say, . They call it ” Ful nasa”. the word “ful” is pronounced like the english word “fuel”. i kind of feel sorry for them, but maybe its the testosterone.. i´ve heard it increases the tissues inside the nose, especially bone mass.

      It´s intresting to note that the hebrew work “nasa” can mean both “to marry” and “to lift” and “to desire” among many other verbs..

  • Lilia

    your hair’s looking on point

  • Olivia

    As a child, my mom insisted I cut my hair into a short bob with a thick swath of bangs all the time. I finally rebelled at the age of 13, and grew my bangs out and my hair long. For so many years, I associated that haircut with awkward adolescence and parental oppression. It wasn’t until I was in my late 20′s that I was finally able to revisit a bob and bangs without feelings of apprehension. Its amazing how much emotional baggage we roll up into our appearance and how liberating it is when we let that go!

  • Charlotte

    I have always admired your writing skills. This article in particular is spot on and I believe so is your friend. You look amazing no matter what, but your recent looks blew me away!

  • http://forthemrs.blogspot.com/ For the Mrs

    You surprise me everytime by your writing skills. You truly are the real-life Carrie Bradshaw in my opinion (minus the sex talk).

  • Kristen

    This was me last year. I hated flats, would not dare to be every other girl on the street and wear just shorts and a shirt. No I had to get the socks out and the giant platforms, giant dresses and denim jackets. It’s too hot to do that though. As long as it’s a good shirt and true to self shorts, then I’ll be good for another month or two.

  • Fearfully Fashioned

    I love the simplicity of this look. I am the opposite. Lately I’ve been delving into more layered looks. Our style is constantly evolving.

    http://www.fearfullyfashioned.com

  • Andrew

    Leandra, WHY NO GIF?

    • Leandra Medine

      You’re right. You are so right. I am sorry.

      • Lauren

        It’s never too late to GIF Leandra… come on

  • d4divine

    You, my dear, are a goddess!

  • Elisa Taviti

    Amazing!!!

    xoxoxo
    Elisa from My Fantabulous World

  • monkeyshines

    simple and wonderful!

    monkeyshines
    http://monkeyshines-monkeyshines.blogspot.com/

  • Maddy

    You are not becoming less interesting nor are you simply growing up. You are finally developing truly your own style that you will probably stick with for the rest of your life. The years of layering insane amounts of bright clothing were spent searching for the style that you felt defined you. It seems that now you have found it in more streamlined clothes. But that doesn’t mean that you won’t don one of your crazy fun concoctions every so once in a while!

  • http://mafaldadotzero.blogspot.fr/ Mafalda

    A little silly dancing before I go to sleep, thanks Leandra!

    http://mafaldadotzero.blogspot.fr/

  • maud.schellekens

    Great shorts you’re wearing!

    XOXO Maud

    NEW OUTFIT POST ONLINE:
    http://thirteentalesoffashion.blogspot.nl/2013/07/outfit-mykonos-day-1.html

  • Opposite Lipstick
  • Hudson Berry

    Your friend rocks. This is a philosophy lesson for peeps in their 20s

  • Katie

    You are seriously my denim diper idol. I also have been scared of rocking flats until I bought Celine furkenstocks and wore them to church on Sunday with a strapless dress. I didn’t care about the looks I was getting- it felt great!

    • Leandra Medine

      I NEED A VISUAL SO BADLY

      • Katie

        I can email you a picture of the outfit this week? I don’t think they are ideal to take camping this weekend. But they were super cute and kind of Japanese-esque with my Celine Trapeze. I also read this blog and she wears hers alot: http://www.vasilievablog.com/2013/07/red-desert.html It took me a little while to be as brave as she is but now the height thing is as much of an issue. They are amazing!

  • http://www.justinnesblogspace.blogspot.com/ Justinne Javate

    your hair. it needs a GIF to showcase that amazing volume.

    -justinne

  • CarolinaG

    I loved it!!!!!!

    I’m posting looks from Los Angeles and accessories:

    http://www.thegavlaks.com

  • http://eileentheooer.blogspot.com/ Eileen

    I love the SF flats! Especially the tiny retro-vibe block heels and the contrasting colors. :) They’re far better than, *cough cough*, Tory Burchs.

    Also, for all who were hoping to see a GIF, you can just randomly click around the pics very fast! :P

  • Olga Montserrat

    Your hair is ON POINT, Leandra.

  • brunetteletters

    You look very cute with a girly touch…love it!!

    Brunette Letters Blog

  • Simone Cumberbatch

    You are an awesome dancer, but the fit of those jorts – um. No.

  • The Dreslyn
  • Selena

    I love you and you have unbeatable, impeccable style, but lately these high waisted styles have been looking horribly unflattering! Like a really bad FUPA!

  • http://www.fashionsnag.com/ Fashion Snag

    I am feeling the same way lately.

    http://www.FashionSnag.com

  • Virginia

    Fashion is the outside of consumer society. the inside may well be uniformity…..quote from great article here:http://balticworlds.com/talks/

  • kayla_ntrndy

    “Grown-ups don’t take meetings in denim cut-offs or wear the same black t-shirt thirty-five days in a row sans wash (but who’s counting?)” <— well I guess the cat's out of the bag lol

    http://www.ntrndy.com

  • Lucy

    Alexa Chung called, she wants her outfit back.

    • Leandra Medine

      There is no way she harbors such a violent fupa.

  • TheGirlWithFireHair

    That’s been happening to me lately too. I used to put on makeup and plan outfits rigourously just to go to the grocery store. Now, I’m wearing simple tees and shorts from Target, with a natural face. I’ve also cut my ultra-long hair recently, just because I was tired of having to straight-iron it, something I did as a weekly ritual. Since my school has let out for the summer and my friends are busy, I blame most of my style-relapse on the fact that I’m not expected to look presentable daily. But…I’ve found, I don’t really mind being comfortable. I don’t think it’s a bad thing necessarily…but it’s just…different, very different from the dramatic me.
    TL;DR: Times are different. I’m more relaxed in style. Is this good or bad?

  • Sarah

    This made my night. Dead on.

  • Lauren at adorn la femme

    So bad ass classy, I’m blown away!!

    (=’.’=)
    Lauren at adorn la femme

  • Madhumita aka June

    So true! “The greatest journeys are the ones that bring you home.”

    Me thinks, the theme of ‘revisiting’ is constant in life.

    To many more… and let us know each time you do!

  • Alba B.

    So what about thinking of the murder going back on the crimes scene of fashion as pure YOU?!!!

    Or is it just smth of not loosing focus of your body and soul and the rest of all kind of sorts called clothes is just a matter of skipping that edge of BrainWASH “What am I going to wear today?!!!”

    abdsign.blogspot.com

  • Hiphunters

    These is a great look! we love those shorts!

    http://blog.hiphunters.com/

  • http://janmarcel.com/ Michiel

    You’re writing skills are perfect Leandra! Just keep them posts coming!!

    http://www.janmarcel.com/

  • mmade

    where’s the gif image of that dance?

  • http://www.farandwildjewelry.com/ abigail lind

    i couldn’t agree with everyone more re: your stellar writing skills. and not this is in no way meant to offend anyone but why is it that carrie bradshaw has become the ultimate comparison for a literary female? why not joan didion, joyce carol oates, or margaret atwood? women who at the very least paved the way for carrie bradshaw.

    abigail
    http://www.farandwildjewelry.com

    • Leandra Medine

      I think it’s the fashion tie-in. Of course, I would rather be compared to Joan Didion or Fran Lebowitz–two absolute literary icons of mine–but that just doesn’t seem feasible or just either. Those women produce hard hitting, award winning shit.

      • http://www.farandwildjewelry.com/ abigail lind

        joan didion started at vogue and fran lebowitz started at interview. hard hitting, award winning shit has to get it’s start somewhere so who’s to say this isn’t phase one. all i’m saying is your writing is dope, you’ve cut your hair short, you’re obviously on your way.

  • jaclyn

    You look fabulous always. BUT less is more. However, I love your “know your onion” ideology- please don’t change that once fall and winter come along!

    Check my blog: http://stylevolver.blogspot.com/

  • Austen

    omg i’ve been feeling the exact same way! i wore leather shorts to work today and have been wishing for my Adidas running shorts ever since. heat just hates cute clothes i guess.
    http://www.keepcalmandchiffon.blogspot.com

  • http://www.fellowthreads.wordpress.com/ Fellow Threads

    I dig this post. I love the whole idea that you’re revisiting a simpler style because you’ve accepted your past and past-self. Or maybe that’s my take on it. I love how fashion is often an outward expression of what’s going on inside.

  • Sarina Fleur

    You have found such a deep meaning behind your outfit choices recently. Which is amazing really because fashion always has been a way of expressing our personalities and emotions. I must say though, due to the incredibly hot weather in England, I’ve been wearing a similar ensemble (very small crop top and high waisted denim shorts with sandals) practically daily due to convenience. I love your blog.

  • diane

    Did you design your own SF’s? That seems like a fun promotion, but I could never decide which color base versus which color bow. I think you made a good choice, since white is so on point now.

    • Leandra Medine

      Yes–I did! And I sort of had the intuition that they’d arrive right at the helm of spring/summer which is why I went with white base/black bows instead of the opposite even though I am now kind of wishing I’d gone for white and cream because that seems to be all I want to wear these days.

  • The Stoosh

    Sometimes we change, sometimes we stay the same, but I guess it all comes down to the mood….at least until you take a look in the mirror and have that moment of epiphany. LOL! Love this post.

    http://www.thestoosh.com

  • Style & Paper

    Ferragamo flats are the best; I would kill for vintage Ferragamo!!
    Style and Paper

  • http://newbornfanatic.wordpress.com/ Newborn Fanatic

    Maybe you’re sick of all the flashy street style out there and just want to take a breaker at the moment, indulging in the sweet comfort of basics? :D

    https://newbornfanatic.wordpress.com/

  • John_Breckin

    No no no no no. I know your type. My ex-wife, dyed in the wool 60s feminist was exactly like you. You dress to reflect your intelligence. You don’t go for the easy A or the obvious. Your outfits are an extension of your mind.
    When you dress chicly but simply, you worry that people will think you are chic but… simple. Your “man repelling” outfits were a study in, genius: complicated, unusual, bold. Exactly like you. Whenever you wear a basic uniform, you are not worrying that you are getting lazy: you are worrying that you are getting dumb.
    My (incredibly smart) ex-wife always believed that feminism and female intelligence pretty much ended when women stopped challenging themselves in their outfits. A lot of the results — hello 70s — were an eye wound, but people aimed for complex back then. You know what’s happened? You just realized that you’ve been wearing your brain on your sleeves all these years.

    And I just realized I miss my ex- like heck.

    • Leandra Medine

      You know, I’ve never thought of it like this before. Really, really interesting–thanks for sharing this.

      Also, tell her.

  • Bridal saree online shopping

    Nice look…like it online…

    Online shopping for sarees and dresses
    http://www.unnatisilks.com

  • anna

    scandinavian people think jews have a very strange face, especially the nose is very bad-looking,kinda scythe-like they say, . They call it ” Ful nasa”. the word “ful” is pronounced like the english word “fuel”. i kind of feel sorry for them, but maybe its the testosterone.. i´ve heard it increases the tissues inside the nose, especially bone mass.

    It´s intresting to note that the hebrew work “nasa” can mean both “to marry” and “to lift” and “to desire” among many other verbs..

    In scandinavia people think jews have a very strange face, especially the nose is very bad-looking,kinda scythe-like they say, . They call it ” Ful nasa”. the word “ful” is pronounced like the english word “fuel”. i kind of feel sorry for them, but maybe its the testosterone.. i´ve heard it increases the tissues inside the nose, especially bone mass.

    It´s intresting to note that the hebrew work “nasa” can mean both “to marry” and “to lift” and “to desire” among many other verbs..

  • Allison

    you are my soulmate, Leandra.
    http://www.thestylishsoul.com

  • Ally

    does anyone know where her necklace is from? im dying over here

    • Leandra Medine

      Hey! My mom is a jewelry designer–it;s one of her pieces. brand is called Mark Henry

  • Adam

    I love such blogs. It’s easy to read it and it’s also very informative. Thanks

    http://znajomek.com/jak-szybko-schudnac-w-tydzien/

  • Christine

    Are we the same human?

  • liz

    sounds similar to normcore

  • Quinn

    Don’t worry, you’re still repelling with the Ferragamos. I would have never thought to pair them with the cut-offs and tee. It makes them so much edgier and fresh. You are so cute!

  • Andrea

    I also have been reverting to the denim/holey t shirt/black flats look. Today I bought my first ever white sundress. Lately I’ve been feeling the simplistic. I think that there is a direct correlation between the past few seasons of layers upon layers and eventual fatigue of said layers… It’s time for a change and sometimes that means revisiting your comfort zone.

  • JBailz

    Thank you for this, lately I’ve been revisiting old and true pieces that I once avoided purely because of the memories or period in my life in which it represented. I’ve allowed myself to accept that maybe who I was then is still who I am now, just a bit reformed. This direction back to simplicity, to a time where I literally threw on what worked for me, still works for me.

  • Ajnira Muminovic

    It’s a goof thing :)

    majnira.com

  • http://www.americaninmunich.com emmy

    I love the flats and I’m glad you are back to wearing some. I live in Europe and have to walk over cobblestones. That feat is easier when your heels can’t slip into the crevices every step I take.