One of my favorite expressions is, “the shoemaker’s children have no shoes.” There’s a bunch of versions of it, but the basic idea is that we often don’t do as well as for ourselves as what we do for others. I think this is true in lots of scenarios.
So my fourth request for the month was “fashion assistance for those in need or would otherwise never know they were in need.” Not sure if the requester was hoping for a hot-or-not-esque spew of cattiness (which, clearly, I am capable of delivering) or legit suggestions.
For better or worse, I am going with legit suggestions. Here’s why. I secretly fantasize about being a stylist. Let me be clear… I am not highly fashionable. When I actually leave the house (says the lady who works from her second bedroom and wears yoga pants “to the office” four of five days a week), I think I am reasonably put together. But that’s about as much credit as I am willing to give myself. However, I believe that I really am good at dressing and accessorizing other people.
So, with that very unsubstantiated credibility established, here goes.
1) You are wearing things a size too big. Yes, you are. Um, no, you are. Shut the f*ck up. I said, you’re wearing things a size too big. If I go shopping with one more of my girlfriends and she pulls a medium (or a size six or a size 14, I don’t care) off the rack, I will smack her. I don’t give a crap about the little gremlin in your head telling you you’re fat, or your shoulders are too wide, or you could never wear that size because of your boobs. Try it on and have someone honest there to tell you it sags in the butt or, hey, everyone likes a little cleavage. BUY A SMALLER SIZE.
2) Try it on (because sometimes you might need a bigger size). Ehh, see what I did there? I know, it’s confusing. Except that it’s the exact same advice. Try clothes on and see how they look and ASK someone else. Ask, ask, ask… you’re your own worst enemy. Someone will tell you if it’s too snug. Or, if the collar hangs funny. Or, WTF is with the buttons on the side that you didn’t even notice when you picked it up. Or, is an asymmetrical hem an actual thing? Really? Is it a thing you like? You’re only going to know if you try it on.
3) Mix stuff up. Patterns. Colors. Textures. Lengths. If I see you in a grey crewneck under an unaccessorized black cardigan with jeans and black clogs, you do know what’s coming, right? I will smack you. Floral shirt under a pinstriped blazer? Yes. Silver belt with rose goal chunky necklace? Sure. Leather shell under cashmere v-neck? Ooh, please (I wish I had that outfit!). Navy and orange? Fine. Be bold for Christ’s sake. It’s your outfit. You’ll change tomorrow, if not in an hour. How wrong could you go?
4) Be a little bit sweet and a little bit dirty. I’m so tempted to just leave that with no explanation. Just, always mix something dainty with something a little rock and roll – a sundress with cowboy boots, leather leggings with a flowy blouse, a maxi skirt with a jean jacket. Same deal with your makeup, FYI.
5) No loosey with loosey or tighty with tighty. You know that top you have that’s so skin tight that you can actually see the pattern of your bra? I love it. It’s hot. Take off your skinny jeans with it or I will personally cut them off of you. Your goal is not to be a sausage-encased whore. (No, it’s not.) Put on your wide leg jeans or a swishy skirt. There we go. Same with flowy/flowy. Remember, you are not a woman activist at a book reading. (Ok, maybe you are and still please follow this advice, because you will look better for it). Take off the palazzo pants paired with a tunic and knee-lengthy cardi. That cardi is cozy and cute! Wear it with your leggings, dummy.
Hmm. It would seem that I managed to both be catty and offer some tips. Makin’ shoes, makin’ shoes.
Oh, and one last word of advice – put on a belt. You’ll go from frumpy to put together faster than you can say “wardrobe.”