On Cramping My Style
If there was a TLC show about people that just hoarded clothing, I would probably be cast as the lead role. There would be at least a five-hour special that cut into Honey Boo-Boo’s airing time (hell yeah, bitch) on me, my clothes, and how my closet looks like a monster broke into the Free People store, was PMSing, ate everything in there, and then vomited it all back up.
When I was in eighth grade I wore royal blue tights with a salmon and mint-colored plaid skirt to school. And since no one ever said anything to me about this outfit, nor any of my others, I kept doing what I was doing. When I started high school, I felt the need to tone things down a bit. I still could not go more than five days straight without wearing a dress or a skirt and begged my mother to get me floral Doc Martens four years before they were cool. My style was my pride. I imagined that it always was and it always would be.
For some reason, however, I feel like I am slowly but surely losing it. My wardrobe is the same, but I physically and mentally cannot put together the same outfits that I used to. I recognize good taste in an issue of Vogue or while Facebook stalking my friend’s cousin’s campfriend’s homefriend’s sister’s friend. But I cannot seem to find it in myself. Sadly, over the last year I’ve come to realize that my sense in fashion has faded.
I cried over this matter while texting my boyfriend savagely at 2 a.m., expressing my woes and finding comfort in a jar of Kosher pickles. I was curious to figure it out. Why had I changed?
Why do any of us change if we like the way we are, for that matter? I was perfectly happy wearing adult-sized overalls and as much tulle as possible, all of the time. Maybe I had gotten lazy. I didn’t have time to dress well, and I didn’t feel like creating the energy to dress well. But I knew that wasn’t it. Then the scariest thought of all glazed my mind–conformity.
Conformity, especially at a young adult age, is one of the most overwhelming ideas we will ever encounter if we think about it too hard. You need to learn to be a trendsetter by standing out, but only when you’re confident others would be willing to follow. You need to not be too many steps ahead nor too many steps behind. Although change is a human tendency, it is difficult to do so because subconsciously, we have to make sure that we are changing not alone, but with everyone else. Typically, this answer would be satisfying to me. But in the case of Hannah And The Missing Fashion Taste, it wasn’t. It was like biting into a slutty brownie and realizing that damn, you didn’t get a piece of the oreo.
Did I change myself, or did society change me? Will we ever really know? Probably not. So I gave myself a few words of advice for… myself. Be calm. Be brave. Eat salad. And dress how you feel like it.