Wardrobe Remix: Danielle

Visiting the Columnia Museum of Art

Note: Wardrobe Remix is a series of posts inspired by creative ways to get more out of your wardrobe during a seasonal change. To view similar posts, check the “Wardrobe Remix” tag.

Slide1

If you regularly follow my posts, then you know that I advocate mindful consumption. Whether that means shopping local, building a capsule wardrobe or reusing bits and bobbles, individuals should buy considerately. This Wardrobe Remix series brings those notions to life for different seasons. I like to see how people, real people that I know, get the most out of the clothing in their closets.

The original concept stemmed from my refusal to do “shopping hauls.” Buying  many pieces at the same time doesn’t create savings in the long run. Instead, those dolla-dolla bills are hanging in your closet. Last fall, during the Wardrobe Remix series, I talked about making room for change by cleaning out my closet. This emotional process moved my outfits to a supporting role for my life. This summer, I’m pushing the boundaries of each remaining clothing item even further — by challenging myself to wear my things to new places.

At The Past Minute

Since my husband has been out of town all summer for training, I’ve maintained regular dates with myself. Yes, that breakup plot-line in every girl-comedy — I am doing that. I started occasionally going out on dates with myself because my husband and I work opposite shifts. During some seasons of life, I have friends to take along to the things I enjoy. Other times, art, books, music, and hiking don’t interest my social circle.

The hardest thing about taking yourself out on a date is the lack pressure to meet a timeline. Fridays in particular are my weakness. I can easily slump home after work and spend the entire evening sitting on the couch. It’s not a peaceful, Pinterest post with a cardigan, novel and cup of tea. It’s an unsettled slouch, where I replay the victories and losses of the work week over and over in my head. Breaking away from Friday work to a Friday night out provides the appropriate mental transition. So, Friday is for chambray. I can layer the trans-formal fabric with linen pants or a skirt to look great for a meeting and chill for an evening at a gallery.

Friday is for Chambray- Danielle, Verderamade

The basic look pairs easily with my eclectic collection of found, made, vintage, and borrowed jewelry. So, I’m going places, by myself. No excuses — no going home to change.

A Blonde Date

I’m a natural bronde – that dark and dirty blonde that always leaves Carrie Bradshaw roots. When I was 21, I dyed my hair a dark chocolate brown because I kind of hated my work and wanted to see something else in the mirror each morning. Then, I started a decades-long dyeing addiction. Much to the enjoyment of my hairdresser, I’m up for any color, and any cut, anytime. This time, she took me back to my roots and that make-under was somehow scarier than a transformative tone.

“I’m so tired of being me. Me beautiful. Me ugly. Blonde. Brunette. A million f*cking fashion makeovers that only leave me trapped being me. Who I was before the accident is just a story now. Everything before now, before now, before now, is just a story I carry around. I guess that would apply to anybody in the world. What I need is a new story about who I am. What I need to do is f*ck up so bad I can’t save myself.” ― Chuck Palahniuk, Invisible Monsters

To see my true colors again remains a wonder. After years of getting high off the novelty of switching tones, I thought this shade would underwhelm me. Instead, it’s bringing back #allthefeels. When I first ran away from being blonde, I relished the fact that people (read: men) took me more seriously. Part of me was always afraid to go back to that ingénue persona.

 

Surprisingly, I actually see how far I’ve come when I look in the mirror now. My younger self might find herself both shocked and pleased at how I’ve spent the last decade. That ghost of hair-color past and I agree, it’s not the hair that makes the woman.

On the Road Again

With a summer separated from my love, I was eager to make a weekend trip to visit him. As I packed, I thought about how everything in my wardrobe goes with everything now. So, packing means putting together an appropriate number of pieces for the duration of days — no mixing, matching or thinking required.

WP_20170702_14_13_47_Pro

And I went places. I drove through several states, blaring oldies radio to keep me awake. My linen pants and chambray shirt helped me slide from a desk to a steering wheel. During my visit, the chambray sundress and blue button-down (above) carried me from an early church service, to an art gallery, to eating an Italian hoagie in a hotel room bed.

This summer, my style is about where I’m going — believe me, I’m going.

If you’re interested in guest blogging for a future remix series, please contact me directly.

Advertisements

Wardrobe Remix: Joy

Oxfords shoes

Note: Wardrobe Remix is a series of posts inspired by creative ways to get more out of your wardrobe during a seasonal change. To view similar posts, check the “Wardrobe Remix” tag.

Slide2

Creative work at a nuclear facility. A professional manner in an industrial atmosphere. A feminine flavor while safety codes are always the priority. Calm classy responses to crude, reactive conflicts.

These are some of the oxymorons that I encounter as head of communication for a nuclear power facility.

My outfits matter. They make me approachable to the 600 people whom I interact, while subtly insisting that I’m not afraid of standing my ground.

These Oxfords are the classic, foundational piece to my work wardrobe. They meet the industry safety requirements while adding a classic touch to any outfit combo. Oxfords dress up casual slacks or dark jeans and add a sturdy element to dresses. They can blend in or make a statement, and match leather clutches, watches, or jackets. I wear them with black, brown, beige, and gray.

During colder weather, I wear them with dark, patterned wool socks, pleated slacks, and neutral sweaters.

As the weather warms, I change out the knee socks for no-shows and sweaters for similar colors of short sleeve shirts to tuck into high wasted, relaxed fitting pants.

In a career where I often walk a line between extremes, these oxfords can go almost anywhere.

To read more by Joy, click here.

Wardrobe Remix: Danielle D.

Girl with red scarf

Note: Wardrobe Remix is a series of posts inspired by creative ways to get more out of your wardrobe during a seasonal change. To view similar posts, check the “Wardrobe Remix” tag.

Slide3

For the first time in two years, I am at a job again where I can wear my own clothes! I won’t lie and say that hearing this in my initial interview didn’t make me want the job even more. Sure, it’s still retail, but at least I’m not in a crazy costume anymore (Oh, the Disney life).

Here is the catch: the only colors we are allowed to wear are black, white, navy, grey, and tan, with no patterns. ALL THE NEUTRALS. If you were to step into my wardrobe, you would find random pieces of clothing in those colors, but also find that they are hidden behind my pale pinks, patterned shirts, and an unnecessary amount of graphic tees.

However, after a few days on the job and observing what my co-workers were accessorizing their bland work clothes with, the outfits themselves turned out to not be so bland after all! With a touch of jewelry and a cute, yet comfortable, shoe, adapting to the neutral tone lifestyle has been a breeze! So, here are my three tips to turn a bland outfit into a fab outfit.

Tip #1: Let a necklace make the statement when the dress can’t

Statement necklaces have become my greatest ally with this new job. My only exception is that the necklace (or scarf) has to come from the store I work in. But, for the rest of you, don’t be afraid to add a bold necklace to your look! Whether it’s a longer chain necklace, a cute choker, or one with lots of jewels, wearing a necklace adds more personality to what once was a simple black dress! Here, I am wearing two different necklaces I can wear to work.

322A8CD9-8A4E-4712-AE90-B00ABDEB46F5(1)

Tip #2: Play up your makeup, but keep it professional

My last two jobs led me to believe that it was almost a waste to wear a full face of makeup to work. I was either sweating at an outdoor kiosk or working away in the shipping department. Now that I am in a store that encourages us to look more presentable, so I’ve found playing with my makeup look each day keeps my whole outfit more exciting! Sometimes I will choose to add a wing to my eyeliner or add a soft eyeshadow to my everyday makeup routine. Here’s the main thing to remember: you are still going to work, so keep the look professional. Save the bright colored shadows for a day off, and opt for a more natural look.

IMG_5153 (1)

 

Tip #3: Experiment with shoes

This tip has been a more recent experiment for me, but I am loving it! Changing up your shoes each day keeps things interesting, and also makes your feet happy. I personally like to switch out between sandals and flats, but I have seen others add in wedges to their shoe collection. Like the necklace can make a statement at the top of your outfit, your neck can take a day off and let your shoes do the talking.

IMG_5945

So the next time you put on your work attire and feel bland, try these three tips and you’ll leave home feeling and looking fabulous!

Danielle Ashley is a Broadway news editor, avid tweeter, and fan of all things Disney. Follow her on Twitter, Instagram, and check out her blog Danielle Ashley.

Wardrobe Remix: April

Makeup Tips Verderamade

Note: Wardrobe Remix is a series of posts inspired by creative ways to get more out of your wardrobe during a seasonal change. To view similar posts, check the “Wardrobe Remix” tag.

remixa

Hello there! I became friends with Dani in college and she asked me to write a guest blog for the Wardrobe Remix. You’ll probably get lots of fashion inspiration from this series… so you’ll need some makeup ideas to complete your look! Special thanks to my sister and my future SILs for being my other models.

*Note, I have no professional makeup training. I just love makeup!

For each look I will list the materials that I used. If you have similar products, feel free to experiment! These are just some ideas to get you started. My focus is on eye makeup, so I will not get into foundation or highlighting and contouring. That’s a whole different ball game….

Geek Chic Makeup for Gals with Glasses

Remember the days when we were kids and wearing glasses was a bad thing? As a glasses-wearer, I’m glad that specs are back in style. However, glasses cast a shadow on your face and draw attention to your eyes, so there are special considerations to make your eyes pop.

Start with a clean face, following your typical skincare regimen. (This should include wearing a moisturizer and sunscreen!)

  • NYC white eye liner
  • Sephora Wedding Day (white) eyeshadow
  • Urban Decay Alice Through The Looking Glass Palette (Lily, Metamorphosis, Time/Bandersnatch,)
  • Urban Decay Moondust palette (Granite, Vega)
  • Jordana eyeliner (black and blue)
  • Dior Blackout mascara
  • Diorshow It-blue mascara
  • Dior Brow Styler

Since I wanted to focus more on the eye makeup I didn’t get fancy with the face or lip stuff.

  1. With glasses, you want to brighten your eyes as much as possible since the frames draw attention to this part of your face. To do this, I colored my eyelids with white eyeliner and added just a touch of highlighter under my eyes. Another thing that helps draw attention to the eyes: curling your lashes!! PS- if you have darker skin, coloring your eyelids with a white colored pencil will especially help your eyes pop!
  2. Next, I applied a bit of white eye shadow (Sephora’s Wedding Day) to my entire lid, focusing on the inner corners. To the outer half to 2/3 of the lids I applied Metamorphisis from the Alice palette and highlighted under the brows with Lily. I used the brush that comes in this palette (the end with the shorter bristles).
  3. As usual when I’m doing my eye makeup, I did some experimenting for the crease and outer corners. I typical will do subtle shading in the crease, but with glasses it looks better if there is more of a defined crease. I started with the Urban Decay Moondust palette and blended Granite and Vega; this mixture was applied to the crease and the outer corner. To add a bit more dimension I blended Time and Bandersnatch in the outer corners. To finish you should always blend blend blend!! I typically will just clean my brush off with tissue, then use the brush to blend.
  4. With glasses it’s sooo important to define the eyebrows. I love Dior’s browstyler because it blends to match your haircolor… like magic! There are some products I will splurge on and others where I’ll search for bargains. To me, this is worth the splurge! Then I used Jordana eyeliner (black on top, blue on the bottom). Jordana and Milani eyeliners are great because they’re inexpensive but they don’t smudge. I’m a bit of a cheapskate when it comes to eyeliner. Then for mascara I went with Dior again. I love love LOVE their Blackout mascara. Seriously. I could not love a human baby as much as I love Dior’s Blackout mascara. It’s the blackest black mascara I have ever seen!! Since I love color so much, I like to apply colored liner and mascara on the bottom lash line with black on top.
  5. I may or may not have chosen blue to match my R2-D2 dress…. Maybe.

Natural Autumn Look

I convinced two of my boyfriend’s sisters to help model makeup looks. Nataliya likes a more natural look (as do many women), so I wanted to do a natural look with autumnal colors. I blended various colors throughout this look, but if you want to keep it simple you could just pick one color per step!

  • Sleek Makeup Oh-so-special palette
  • W7 Color Me Buff (UD Naked 2 dupe)
  • Jordana black eyeliner
  • Anastasia Brow Wiz
  • Tarte Tarteist Lash Paint Mascara

Again, you’ll want to start with a clean face after your regular skincare regimen.

  1. For the eyelids I blended two colors: Ribbon from the Oh So Special palette with Dust from the In the Buff palette. This palette looks almost exactly like Naked 2… at a fraction of the price! If you love Urban Decay and want to buy the actual makeup palette, go for it! But….I’m a therapist and I’m poor, so I try to save money when possible. I highlighted under the brows by blending two colors from In the Buff: Buff, and Sand.
  2. For the crease colors, I used Thunder, Onyx, and Silk. I used Thunder in the main part of the crease. To add dimension I added a hint of Onyx to the outer corners and Silk to the inner corners. And as always… blend!!
  3. Nataliya did her eyebrows, eyeliner, and mascara with the materials listed above. For the final look…..
  4. She’s so pretty even without makeup, but this look adds an extra touch to make her look stunning!

Formal Winter Smoky Eyes

Galia (Nataliya’s sister) loves makeup almost as much as I do, so I knew she’d be open to a bold, smoky look.

  • W7 In The Buff Lightly Toasted Eye Color Palette
  • Tarte Tarteist Lash Paint Mascara
  • Eye-ko liquid eyeliner
  • Ulta Beauty Gems Eye Palette
  • UD Woodstock
  • Ulta Glitter topcoat
  • Sephora white glitter eye shadow

Plus she loves Christmas, so I figured Christmas + bold makeup = lots of fun!

  1. Under the brow, I highlighted with Teddy from the W7 Lightly Toasted palette. On the lids, I used white glitter shadow in the inner third of the lid. For the outer two thirds I blended  Magic and It’s a Dream.
  2. For the crease I choose a berry color from the Beauty Gems palette (which I discovered has been discontinued. Sad day!!). Because holly berry…. Christmas… duh. I liked the berry color and wanted to add a bit more color, so in the inner lid I blended a bit of Urban Decay’s Woodstock (dark pink) shadow. To add some dimension and a bit of smokiness, I blended Up in Smoke from the W7 palette with the berry color used before.
  3. Galia loves the winged liner look, so I asked her to do her own eyeliner. For her liner, mascara, and eyebrows she used all the products listed above. To add some more elegance, I dusted over the entire lid with Ulta Glitter Top Coat.
  4. I love how this look turned out! Not everyone can pull off these colors along with glitter but Galia looks gorgeous in this look!

Sugar Skull Inspired Look

Call me weird, but even though I have no Mexican blood in me whatsoever, I have always LOVED sugar skulls. I think because I minored in Spanish and I also love science and anatomy, along with bright, bold colors! Sugar skulls combine so many of my loves!! (Plus they’re candy. Duh.)

  • Myo  Makeup Envy (purple) loose powder eyeshadow
  • Sephora eye primer
  • Sephora Rolling in the Grass No. 10 eye shadow
  • UD Moondust Lightyear and Galaxy eye shadows
  • Jordana black and purple eyeliners
  • Dior Blackout mascara
  • Diorshow It-purple mascara
  • Urban Decay Alice Through The Looking Glass (Lily)

I love sugar skulls, but painting my entire face like a sugar skull is not exactly practical. Plus I’m pretty sure I’d get weird looks any day except Halloween. So for this look I wanted to incorporate one of my favorite aspects of the sugar skull: bright, bold colors!! And who would I rather do this look on than my big sister? Heather taught me how to do my makeup in my young, pre-pubescent years, so it was fun to do her make up for a change!

  1. Heather remembered to get a picture of the lash curling that I failed to capture earlier…
  2. I got so into this look that I totally forgot to take as many pictures of the steps as I should. Oopsie poopsie!! The bright purple shadow (Envy) I used is a loose powder that will only stick to the lid when applied with primer. I used a basic eye primer from Sephora. If you love bright colors, you’ll love Myo Make up. I found this color along with several others on Amazon. I couldn’t find the actual color I used, but this kit includes a similar purple. I highlighted under the brows with Lily, then applied Sephora Rolling in the Grass No. 10 eye shadow in the crease. At this point I finally remembered to take another picture.
  3. I realized that that wasn’t the kind of green I was going for. So I also blended Lightyear and Galaxy into the crease. For eyeliner, Heather used Jordana black on top and purple on the bottom. She uses ELF eyebrow gel (which she had already applied prior to the session). Then we used Dior mascara again; Blackout on top with purple on the bottom.
  4. And here’s the final look! Thanks to my lovely sister for letting me do this spunky makeup look on her!

Hopefully you found some inspiration to have fun with your makeup and play with color. There are lots of options whether you’re looking to save or splurge. You can find any of the products listed above (or similar ones) from Ulta, Sephora, or Amazon.

Happy Fall!! -April

Wardrobe Remix: Hendrick

Wardrobe Remix Hendrick

Note: Wardrobe Remix is a series of posts inspired by creative ways to get more out of your wardrobe during a seasonal change. To view similar posts, check the “Wardrobe Remix” tag.

remixh

2 Fabulous, Temperature-Adaptable Outfits for Cold Mornings That Melt into Hot Days

Ah, California. The Golden State. A paradise whose infinite sunshine and perpetually warm temperatures frame a sarong- and sandal-clad existence. At least, this was the Hollywood-designed stereotype I blissfully believed before I moved to San Francisco for a job in September 2012.

Imagine how shattered my childlike expectations were when I first leapt from the Volvo upon arrival at my new San Francisco apartment, only to be greeted by a wind so frigid, tears froze to my eyeballs. Where was my mythical California sun?

Granted, it was 2:30am and I was delirious from days of driving and living off gas station granola bars and greasy Days Inn breakfast buffets, but this freezing breeze on a cloudy night didn’t align at all with my “sunny with a high of 75” assumptions. This Jersey boy had dressed for beach weather, with a short-sleeved shirt and shorts so short, my boxers billowed in the wind. I looked and felt like a misguided tourist; the only things missing were the oversized fannypack and a local attraction map stained with sunblock and aloe vera.

Here’s the thing about California : Los Angeles isn’t San Francisco. In fact, with San Francisco lying 381 miles north, they’re literally not even close. Most of the California seen on the big and small screens highlights the sun-soaked indulgence of Los Angeles life.
San Francisco, on the other hand, is a decidedly foggier, grittier city that exalts its body hair, its beards and beanies, and its hand-knitted hoodies. Notice a theme? Need for hair growth patterns and clothing accessories conducive to warmth.

However, I find that dressing warm and growing hair to insulate against the cold isn’t good enough, because San Francisco’s weather is as flaky and unpredictable as your typical Tinder match; this city is infamous for thirty degree disparities in a twenty-four hour time period.

So, how’s a local to dress with mornings that chill to the bone chased off by afternoons where sweat beads slide down the spine like wet lemmings?

My key is to dress to adapt. Meaning, wear immediately malleable outfits that yield to a simple re-purpose to meet changing temperature needs throughout the day. Below are two outfits that translate into four unique looks while seamlessly marrying both fabulous style and multi-temperature utility.

Warning : iPhone photography and a stunningly handsome but begrudging clothing model lie ahead.

Outfit 1 : Sweater Together  

My first outfit blends classic Americana inspiration with millennial sass. The outfit’s upper half consists of a preppy vintage acrylic v-neck cable sweater coupled with an equally preppy cream polo. Bright green rings circling the sweater’s sleeves and neck rebel against more conservative color formations and afford a tart segue to yellow jeans that shine like a bikini bottom from a designer swimsuit collection. This outfit is aesthetically pleasing whether the sweater is worn in its most traditional sense for a cold and misty morning commute :
sweateron

Or gently knotted around the shoulders for sweat reprieve when the sun shows its face around noon (when doing this, make sure to strategically vary lengths at which the sleeves hang, so you don’t look like an uppity country club member) :

Outfit 2 : Jacket Hackery

The second outfit exudes a rugged chic like “glamping” at its best, underpinned by gleefully thrifty pieces. This outfit works from both style and practical perspectives, whether with the dapper camel-colored suede jacket shielding from an annoyingly brisk morning :
jacketon

Or lightly encased around the body, with the wearer’s bare arms enjoying freedom on a decidedly less frigid afternoon. The trick to properly rocking a jacket off the shoulders is to ensure said jacket is as blazer-like as possible (eg, tight, svelte, and fitted), not bulky and oversized. This way, you you won’t look like Luke Skywalker hefting around the Tauntaun he dissected in Empire Strikes Back.

Worn right, your jacket will drape off the shoulders like the best cape you’ve never owned :
jacketoffshoulders

Despite the camel jacket’s “wow” factor, let’s not overlook an underdog piece in the second outfit : the summery button-up shirt. Why? Because its pink-lemonade-meets-red-wine-sangria patchwork proudly sprouts from beneath a loud vest, and the shirt is both fierce and traditionally familiar in its message. Remember, just because your outfit can produce two practical looks doesn’t mean either look will be fashionably memorable unless you splash in fun, season-bending colors to endow your outfit with that extra zip and pop.

From a personal style standpoint, Northern California’s weather can either be viewed as cumbersome and inconvenient, or as a platform for which one can creatively flex sartorial muscle. I choose to subscribe to the second mindset not because I’m an optimist, but because I’m vain and devoted to style versatility. I also believe that with the right amount of creativity, ability to let clothes work with and for you, and commitment to colorful, sassy twists on classic concepts, anyone can devise and pull off fabulous, temperature-adaptable looks.

Now, it’s time to go soak in some warm San Francisco sunshine and have a sangria, enjoy a blissfully sunny, buzzed afternoon that will be swept away by near-freezing evening winds. But what to wear?

For collaboration opportunities, please contact hendrikwritesforyou@gmail.com.

Wardrobe Remix: Leah

Wardrobe Remix Leah 6

Note: Wardrobe Remix is a series of posts inspired by creative ways to get more out of your wardrobe during a seasonal change. To view similar posts, check the “Wardrobe Remix” tag.

wardrobe-remixColder weather and I have a love/hate relationship. On one hand, I hate being cold. On the other, I love being able to put multiple layers of clothes on and be snuggled up in a toasty clothing cocoon. Every year, I find myself struggling to have enough variety in my winter wardrobe, so this year I started preparing in July (no judgment). The thought of paying $50 for a sweater makes me want to cry, so I went to the one place I knew would be budget friendly no matter how many things I found: Goodwill. Continue reading

Wardrobe Remix: Danielle

Note: This is the start of a series on how to update your wardrobe creatively. The posts will feature several guest bloggers with ideas on how change up your closet for the season.

remixdaInspired by the creativity and diverse styles around me, I started asking friends and local bloggers to pull together their top tips for a seasonal wardrobe shift. Then, the idea of a remix sprang to life because the focus is careful, deliberate wardrobe planning (as opposed to a budget-busting haul post). As the great ideas started rolling in, my vision for my own closet shifted. Instead of a wardrobe makeover, I’m making room this season.

In my closet this season, I’m making room. – Danielle, Verderamade

It started with buying a matching hangers. Wait, no, it started with a request from my husband to get rid of wire hangers. No, further back… it started when my apartment caught on fire a few years ago. Also known as, the spring that I realized my wardrobe is not the center of the universe.

On New Years Eve, a temperamental stove turned our holiday celebration into a shivering sidewalk wait as the fire department threw a 1/4 of my belongings out the window. Then, on New Years Day, I awoke on a cold, empty room in a sleeping bag with my husband and my cat. I was grateful, homeless, and without a change of clothing.

Everything in our apartment was dirty or damaged — unfit for use. As everything left for the cleaners, I was left with a perplexing situation. Buying a new wardrobe seemed ridiculous –some of my stuff would surely return. So, I borrowed two pairs of pants and two shirts with a plan to rewash them in the middle of the week. That mid-week washing turned into four months of wearing two outfits.

(I kept thinking my things would return “very soon.”)

During that time, I felt self-conscious at my marketing job. But, if there is an antonym for drama-queen, I aspired to win that label during my small crisis.  Life was stressful, living in a temporary, empty space. Life was frightening, running away from a fire clutching my cat as my husband pushed me away from clouds of smoke. Life was exhausting, fighting with insurance companies about who was at fault and who should pay for the damage.

However, I didn’t want to wear my crazy for everybody at work to see. However, a need to take a final insurance phone call revealed that, “Yes, I was still living in a temporary space and hadn’t anyone noticed that I only wore two outfits for the past four months?”

Nope. People weren’t just being polite. They truly didn’t notice that the blue and white blouses and the grey trousers were being heavily rotated. So, I truly embraced the minimalist philosophy. For my closet, this became my new focus. I needed to start making room for more important things than clothes.

Making Room for Positive Growth

#allthethings that I can’t wear is becoming a much shorter list. #allthethings I can do is growing much longer. Raised on magazines and criticism, I have worried too much about what people think, how I look, and how all of that will be interpreted. Frankly, it’s taken 29 years on this earth to manage the internal dialogue of the shaming, body-police. They still police but, I’m no longer echoing those phrases. I take my measurements to alter my clothes to fit my current body — a stark contrast to when I would make plans to alter my body to fit new clothes.

“And yet you are all that you have, so you must be enough. There is no other way.”
― Marya Hornbacher, Wasted: A Memoir of Anorexia and Bulimia

I need to keep this body warm and healthy while it carries around my mind and soul. A wardrobe focused on goals beyond flattering my figure, such as being a #girlboss and artist, has allowed me to make room for personal growth.

Making Room for Sweet Memories

My relationship with costume jewelry has come full circle with some of my recent projects. As a child, I loved everything that glittered, even if it wasn’t gold. I appreciated the whimsy of the cheapest trinkets and elevated them to art with my imagination. Then, as I grew older, I started to fear their tawdry, chipped green underbelly.

“It’s so hard to forget pain, but it’s even harder to remember sweetness. We have no scar to show for happiness. We learn so little from peace.” ― Chuck Palahniuk, Diary

I didn’t cut my teeth on wedding rings in the movies. However, I love the theme of costume jewelry from the perspective of Misty. That character is the center of Chuck Palahuniuk’s Diary, an artist with a preference for old mansions, fake broaches, and bad boys. As a young adult, I was torn between nostalgia and all the girls around me who wanted real “rocks”. I’ve never lusted for diamonds, preferring sapphires or Anne Shirley’s amethysts. Then, I started collecting bits of broken jewelry from family and friends. I transformed those broken bits into floral crowns, bracelets, pendant necklaces and keychains. Sure, some of the parts are cheap bits of glass, wood, and copper. But, the history is something that runs very deep into our collective past. So, I am continuing to explore and embrace these sweet (sometimes borrowed) memories.

Making Room for Good Vibes

No matter the order of your morning routine, standing before the closet is a part of that list. At times, I have dreaded that confrontation. Truly, it was a confrontation as my clothing screamed about all the things I was lacking. A wishlist for good figure, clear skin, perfect hair, and straight teeth all distracted me from getting dressed and getting out the door. In my early twenties, my bra size tripled — leaving me to freak out for years about button-popping blouses. It seems like such a silly daily drama, now.

“Please accept my shine.” – Beyonce Knowles, Run the World (Girls)

If we’re going to #runtheworld then, let’s run it with a little dignity and a lot of happy feelings. I’ve taken everything out of my closet that makes me feel crappy. That’s probably not clear advice but, it’s the truth. If an item reminds me of something negative, it’s gone. This includes:

  • jewelry from a controlling ex
  • a shrug stretched by a bitchy roomate
  • a sweatshirt that makes people ask if I’m pregnant
  • a cheap blouse that puckers across my chest
  • shoes that I wore for a terribly unfair performance review

Do I always look good? I’ll never be sure. I do know, however, that I want to feel good. I am letting of that daily torturous dialogue, that sometimes made me such a noxious and unpleasant individual. Seriously, who needs to bring that negative commentary with them into the world each day? So, I have finally made room for more life in my wardrobe– a clearer personal style through positive growth, sweet memories, and good vibes.

Next, you’ll be hearing from several of my favorite artists, crafters, thinkers, and bloggers. Each has their own take on a cold weather wardrobe remix. To stay in the loop on this series –please follow this blog, instagram, or facebook. Also, please sound off in the comments with how you’re remixing your wardrobe for the next season.

If you’re interested in guest blogging for a future remix series, please contact me directly.