It’s really, really annoying to want something that you know everyone else wants, too. It’s like feeling yourself develop a crush on the captain of the football team or realizing that you like Mumford & Sons.
You accept such defeats on the runway because it means, at the very least, that you didn’t “miss” something. You saw what your peers saw; you understood. (Phew, you may think as you wipe your brow after a close encounter with a tricky show. You liked the shoes a lot, but they were super weird. Not your usual style. Why do I like these, you wondered, concerned. And then: Oh good, everyone else does, too.)
But when it comes to mass retail, that world “mass” hangs over certain shoppers’ heads like a precariously-hung chandelier. All it is is a stamp that says “Buyers: this will appeal to many.” Like cake or pizza! But if you’ve ever wondered why the OG hipster was so defensive about knowing of a rising band years before you, it’s because keeping creative secrets (musical, sartorial) makes your favorite things feel personal.
That doesn’t mean you deny yourself of something you like for the sake of not wanting to share.
Reformation, for example, is really good right now. It’s so good that it’s kind of annoying. Everyone is going to have the white Manon dress this spring. There’s already a waitlist. Everyone will have the pink off the shoulder ruffle top, the perfect, low-backed bodysuit, the side-tie tank, the spaghetti-hybrid cami, the sundress (with the almost-to-the-elbow sleeves), the dress covered in stars, the pink one that covers nothing and probably for the name alone, the striped Amelia tee.
Ugh, though! What if you want it for yourself — and only you! — so that when you show up to your best friend’s birthday party you’re not one of five girls in the frock you found?
The solution is in that question though: What if?
Will the world end?
Will you be wearing the same thing as someone else?
Has that happened before?
But did the world end?
Does it mean I don’t have a unique sense of personal style?
It means you and a large handful of people agreed on something. Consider that a victory.
Photographs via Reformation.