When you’re still navigating what will make your personal style, you know, personal, it can feel a lot like you’re trying to jump through fire rings and pull out every trick you’ve hidden in your sleeve to make an impression that is lasting.
Lasting on who? Well, your reflection, first and foremost — but also, the people you identify as your peers, the fashion superheroes you’ve selected as your own and the unwitting icons, plebeian passersby who will, perhaps, elect you as one of their very own superheroes.
We all get caught up in the minutiae how to craft these looks. Will I effectively make my point if there are no balloon sleeves? Can I wear flat shoes and become a superhero myself? How many layers will it take to get to the center of a fashion week front row? Oh gosh, is style actually a math equation that I have no business trying to solve?
Hold on, now, though.
Can you do me a favor? Take all those questions. Tack on the similar ones you’re facing, which are not listed. Gather them up and throw them over your left shoulder. Do it quickly and don’t look back. Say, “Bye, mother f’ers” and ask yourself the following: what am I wearing when I feel most comfortable?
I don’t mean when you’re going to do fitness — though by all means! Leggings may very well be the new jeans! But when do you feel most comfortable in your presentation?
Are you wearing simple black pants? A well-tailored coat? Same.
But how now does that translate to strong personal style, right?
Wrong. How does a bowl of plain-ass spaghetti become the best arrabbiata you’ve ever eaten? Rhetorical question, I’m going to answer: with trial, error and then a whole lot of add-ons. Spicy shit and tomato shit and seasonings and pepper and salt and boom shaka laka. So consider your pants and tailored coat (or whatever the most plain version of you might be) and call it the fashion equivalent of that pasta bowl. Don’t worry about the seasonings while you’re making the spaghetti. Just make sure you like carbs. The rest of the stuff will come. It might take the form of thick rimmed glasses
And belted blazers paired with floor-length skirts
Unexpected white sneakers
And layers to accommodate a short sleeve coat or conversely add salsa to a black long one.
Think of your scarves as a cold weather excuse to wear a boa
And PVC, ergo plastic, as the only viable rain accouterment.
If they tell you overalls are dead, roll your eyes and stomp your feet
Unless, that is, you agree.
In which case, remind them that sometimes all it takes to make a big statement about who you are is a simple pair of pants and a well-tailored coat.