Recently, I’ve been thinking quite a lot about how much my ‘personal style’ – for want of a better phrase – has grown. When I was younger, in my pre-teens I had the worst taste in fashion. I remember a set a bought from the Hospice shop that consisted of a black button up cardy with a green rose pattern and a matching vest. Absolutely hideous, I wonder where it is now. I remember the wee gothic stage I went through (sorry mum and dad) and then the radical 80’s? stage which consisted of really bright clothes and accessories and trying allsorts to get BIG HAIR – that never happened. I remember that slow, inevitable tumble as I fell in love with shoes and now looking at my wardrobe I can actually see how my love of dresses has gone through numerous stages. I used to like paisly/ floral/ patterned dresses that were kind of flowy with thin straps. Despite the fact that I have several I never wear them anymore. I think I’ve been on this journey and I’m almost at the destination. Now, I have to have dresses with shape, tailored, or with some form of structure, sleeves or wide straps and – while I still like floral – I prefer bold colours and patterns. Maybe, I’m going back in time.
Anyway, why I’m writing this post is because I have a new job that allows me to do one of the things that I love the most and that makes me truly happy. I get to dress up. It’s a requirement for my job that I give a bag of rats about how I look and I love that. I think that caring about your appearance is one of the best things for your happiness and confidence – doesn’t that sound backwards, shallow and materialistic! It’s not really. Its not about how much you spend, the brands you wear or even what style you wear – it’s about self-respect and the fact that you have made an effort. That’s what people see. I think that we have been misled to think that time spent in front of the mirror makes you vain. Of course, it can – but it does a lot of other things to. Before you can love other people and care for other people you have to love yourself, genuinely. You have to believe in yourself (this is basically the whole reason why I don’t believe in God – why put all your faith in ‘man in sky’ when all you really need is to believe in yourself – enough about that) What I’m trying to say is that one of the steps to loving yourself is looking after yourself. And one of the important parts of caring for yourself is making an effort with how you look – because when you’re comfortable in your own skin, your personality shines brightly and you put faith into other people. Track pants and unwashed hair are for rainy-tv-watching-days – which we are all entitled to. I think I learnt all of this from my Mother. Really. She’s not into fashion or shoes or styles. She doesn’t wear jewellery much and is always in the garden, but I’ve always been noticed, and been proud of, how much she cares about how she looks when she goes to work. I believe this is because she knows that a lot of people, her clients, trust her and value her opinion – who respect her. Respect is something that is earned. It’s a lot easier to respect someone that respects themselves.
So frocks aren’t just for dancing, and you don’t have to get dressed up just for a date. And if you’ve stopped caring about your appearance, maybe it’s time for a fresh start.
~Get up, dress up and show up~