Fashion is my guilty pleasure. I love everything about it, as long as I make it original. Several members of my family have deemed me eccentric, a description I've not always viewed in the spirit of kind observation. Yet they are absolutely correct. Eccentric I am. I think this "characteristic" manifests itself with mucho gusto via my sartorial expression.
Fashion is a genre. It is defined by consumerism, expression, social class, and to some extent, worth and value. I see it as a blank canvas form of definition that changes with the underpinnings of my life experiences. I love that! I love changing the way I am feeling with fabric, and combination, and LOOK.
Sometimes fashion means more to me than others...yet it always represents my spirit. I feel very little if any fear within this avenue of expression. I don't really change my underlying style from work to play...it's always edgy and somewhat controversial. Hope I can express that without sounding completely enrapt in myself, as I suppose the point I am making is that I really have enough confidence in what I choose that it doesn't matter if it is in style or accepted, much less embraced. I wear what I like which seems to be one of the only paths in my life whereby I have complete from the gut confidence.
It is only recently, however, and through the process of maturity (rather than aging) that I have come to realize that I need so little in order to drape myself with expression via my clothes. Sheepishly, I have always been an advocate of finding "deals" and accumulating "more" hence crowding my space and time with a hobby that can easily become a beast of burden.
So...during this ongoing season of revelational discovery, I began to give away. At first, with gusto and almost frenetic purging... until one entire room in my apartment was stark and empty. I began to find things, articles of clothing that I truly saw for the first time....I surmise, because in the frenzy of procuring "more," I overlooked the beauty of the fit, the make, the design, the fabric, the feel. It was fun to put together new looks to signify outwardly what I was feeling inwardly.
Eventually, I moved to the attic, where I uncovered pieces of clothing I had long forgotten. They told stories...of walking away from a horrendous mistake of a marriage in such haste that I rapidly boxed garments and had the movers hide them far from my memory. Pulling them out piece by piece was cathartic, and empowering as I discarded some things and held dearly to others.
Some of the giveaway process has been bittersweet to the point of bringing me to tears. I feel embarrassment that I equated so much of my self worth with what I had, what I wore, what I showed materialistically to the world. The clothes have hidden me. It has been a sad revelation to note THAT diversion....that huge elephant in the middle of the room.
There were bittersweet moments when I realized that no, I do not need five cobalt blue jackets, yet I love them all in each of their uniquely different way, so how do I part with all but one?
And then the memories derived from wearing a piece. A purple Ralph Lauren blazer in a size far too tiny for my frame...denoting a time when I was in such personal peril that it actually fit. A gauzy white crocheted mini that gave me pause as I remembered being in love and wearing it to celebrate nothing more than a Tuesday walk in the park.
I gave them all away.