Conscious Clothing Choices

cc-choices6Does anyone else have that thing where if they’re not wearing the right outfit or they’re uncomfortable in what they’re wearing then the whole day is ruined?

I don’t know how to accurately describe this feeling but its like the world is getting the wrong impression of me. Not like the lazy or unflattering version but the wrong version. I’ve worn outfits that I’m sure are very unflattering but I’ve been comfortable and confident so I don’t care – its not that, its like having my personality misunderstood through clothing.

I have always been interested in how people dress, not necessarily in a fashion way but I’ve been curious as long as I can remember. I have a very good memory – people tell me this a lot, I probably remind them of outfit choices they’d rather forget. I am mostly good at remembering what things, or a situation looked like at the time, I can tell you what most people were wearing the first time I met them.

Clothes matter to me, they make an impression and I think they speak a lot about who you are, where you are in life and what you want to say. Obviously I don’t think everything is a statement but I believe you really project yourself through your choice of clothing. And that’s the thing; there is so much choice now, bountiful choice, so really we owe it to ourselves to pick things that are right to us.

I wish I had the money to buy really high end, beautiful quality clothing but I do NOT wish to be a part of the rat-race that is the fashion industry. The stress of trying to keep up and be ahead seems just too exhausting and like you’re taking yourself way to seriously. I think you can tell the people who are creating and wearing art and the people who are just trying way to hard.

I’m not sure I have style, in fact I’m 99% sure I don’t but I can tell you immediately when people are not comfortable in what they’re wearing. I think you can spot it a mile off and I fear that people can see it in me too, those are the days when I want to run home and get changed.

When I was a student I was known to leave the studio and change half way through the day because I didn’t like what I was wearing, I felt scruffy or just not my best self. I think people used to think this was a prissy and up-tight quality and maybe it is but I don’t see it that way, it feel like I cannot concentrate or produce good work if I’m just thinking about how bad I look.

I strive for comfort and confidence in my life and that means in my clothing choices too. Some people live for the drama and angst in their day and I don’t know how to identify with those people, we are from different planets. I think when I’m feeling good in what I’m wearing there isn’t anything I can’t do. It also brings out the best side in me. I will be hard working, helpful, patient and funny – but catch me when I’m wearing an outfit I’m unhappy in and you should just run because the chances are you wont come out alive.

My most comfortable staples for my wardrobe are:

 

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How basic am I? So basic that I don’t care.

I like clean lines, lately I’ve gone off prints (except stripes because they’ll live in my heart forever) and I don’t like anything too fussy. On me that is, I love when other people wear really out-there crazy clothes, I like to think I can live vicariously through them.

I want to get out of the habit of just buying things because they fit and somewhat flatter me, that is not the point. What do they say about me? Do I want to be the type of person who owns this garment? The chances are no, so I’m trying to make more conscious clothing choices. This has mostly resulted in me not buying much and wearing the same stuff every weekend but I’m hoping to turn it into a cohesive wardrobe that I love and represents a bit more of who I am.

Photo image courtesy of: Pinterest

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First 5 book reviews of 2017

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I have only read five so the pile in this picture is probably being a bit generous but it’s a nice image. That chair is so inviting, I would love to curl up with a coffee and read all day.

So one of my resolutions this year was to read more. (as if I’m the only one). I love to read and don’t seem to have the time, until I get into a good book and then pockets of time magically appear so I can sneak of and read and read and read. I wanted to make sure I always have a book on the go, I know it’s only February but I’ve managed to stick to it pretty well. I’m actually finding it quite addictive, like the more I read the more I cannot wait to read other books and just devour them. I regret not doing this sooner but hey 2016 wasn’t exactly a stella year for everyone was it?

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So the first book I read this year was Little Women by Louisa May Alcott, a classic that I never got round to reading but made it my priority this winter. It’s a hard slog and by the time I got to the end I felt like there should have been some sort of prize but I loved it. There is a reason this is a classic and why people keep re-reading it. I loved the style and how I could imagine everything so clearly; I cherish being transported to a time so different to mine, being in their world felt special. I fell in love with the March family and cried and laughed with them. What a hero of a writer.

7f78c3efe83491306e51e07491fe8547Skipping forward into very much this generation I then read Mindy Kaling’s Is everyone hanging out without me I already knew I loved this women so I didn’t really need to be won over. I adore the US Office and have recently started watching The Mindy Project so I was already sold. She really inspires me to work hard and go after what I want, it’s so amazing that we have so many more powerful, female role models now, still not enough but there are so many more than I remember growing up. I love her honest writing and cannot wait to delve into her second book.

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My Salinger Year by Joanna Rakoff, my boyfriend bought me this one for Christmas, amongst others, and I loved it almost immediately. Its about a young girl starting out in the literary world in New York in the 90’s. She finding her way, stumbling and striving, I found her more relatable as her story got deeper and the choices she had made were explained. Usually I can visualise the book I’m reading straight away and whilst I did with this one another sense grabbed at me that I wasn’t expecting. I found the sounds in the book to be intoxicating, the noise of the train and the transcribing machines in the office, imagining the sounds of the pages of the transcripts opening and coffee being slurped, it set the scene for me so well. Also her description and love for vintage clothes spoke to the costume designer part of my soul.

304bf6a43505f086268b6e8cfca29a5eTalking as fast as I can by Lauren Graham. I am a Gilmour Girls fan and a Lauren Graham fan for that matter so I was really keen to read this book about the return of the show. This was another inspiring one about how hard work really pays off, don’t give up and be confident. I always find it refreshing to hear about other peoples journeys, they struggled too – its not just me! Her spirit is infectious and uplifting, you cannot help but to go along  her train of thought with her. I could hear her reading it to me throughout and loved that, in a very low-key fan girl way it was like chatting to a friend.

a1e36ba133e7109d2a840a79499c0340A fortunate Age by Joanna Rakoff, ok so I may have bought this one after reading My Salinger Year, and I also may not be completely finished but I have have read enough of it to give my opinion. Although set in a similar time and place I knew this book has a different tone, I sometimes find the wonderings of each character a little hard to keep hold of and have found myself re-reading sections to catch up but I like her overall voice. It’s based around a group of college friends trying to find their way and carve out the next section of their lives with complicated relationships and new careers. Each person in the story is coming from a different angle and I enjoy how their narratives fuse together, I like the romantic picture she creates in this world and its like Joanna lets you in so close you could touch it.

Having written out this list I have just realised that they are all female authors. This was not intentional but I’m loving what it says about my latest literary choices. There are so many more books I want to read this year, a mixture of classics I’ve never read and new fiction I’ve never tried, I think I’ll keep track and keep reviewing

What are you guys reading at the moment?

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Attempting to buy a house

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Holy crap how hard it is to be in your late 20’s trying to get your shit together?!

We are living in a tough economy right now and everyone is scared of Brexit and Frexit and Trump (lions and tigers and bears oh my!). I’m finding it really hard to be a part of the generation who want to move up in the world and settle down at this time, and I’m not even talking about having children yet, me and my boyfriend just want t buy a house.

I’m not saying anything new here, but I am really struggling with what the consequences of my decisions and actions actually mean. It’s so easy to live beyond your means now, you can buy so much on credit, get cheap holidays and live pay-day to pay-day, but this is not good. It has come back to bite me and I didn’t even know it was happening. I felt like we were just living like everyone else around us and now we want to get financially serious it’s like we’ve missed the boat – we are both still in our 20’s – that to me does not seem fair.

It’s not even like I went crazy in my 20’s and lived it up in Thailand and travelled to Australia, I worked hard and went on a few holidays, nothing really irresponsible or out of the ordinary but I now cannot help but feel like I have failed. I feel like I’m failing at being an adult and the consequences of my 20’s are much harder than they should be. Like I’m being punished for this lazy, unemployed, lay-about life style that I didn’t even get to enjoy. It’s like having a hangover when you didn’t even go out and indulge the night before.

We have a very minuscule amount of debt we are paying off and I’m trying to make my credit card balance look a little less scary. But we both work, we both pay our bills on time and we both have an honors degree from a prestigious university, but it feels like none of that matters as much as it should.

A cousin of mine said that you can enjoy your 20’s; go to uni, travel a bit and find your career – or you can buy a house! It is crazy to me that it’s one or the other; you cannot have both, unless of course you come from money.

If I had my time again I’d like to think id do it differently but I’m not sure I would. I have definitely made some mistakes but on the whole I would move abroad when I did, gone to university when I did and chosen the career I chose – all over again. So what are people supposed to do? I guess if I had been made aware of the seriousness of money problems earlier I would have been more cautious but no one knows what’s going to happen – 2008 and Brexit was a shock to (almost) everyone and the best laid plans…

I wish someone had sat me down and explained the real consequences, I guess then even if I ended up in the same position I would know I chose to be in it. But the luxury of being in the position you have chosen, in todays economy seems like too much of a tall order.

Please excuse me whilst I go and look at this week’s lottery numbers…

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Here goes nothing…

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Okay. Here we go. Nothing to lose. Right?

I am, in fact, finding this whole thing pretty terrifying and secretly empowering. I guess thats how most people feel starting a blog like this.

So why am I starting a blog? To be honest I’m not totally sure, I already have a full time job and I’m also trying to start up an Etsy shop, so the last thing I need to do is take up something else in my *spare* time. But something is telling me I have to do this, something is telling me I need it and its going to help, in some way, with something, but I’m not completely sure what that is.

I would, in no way, consider myself a writer. I am not remotely unqualified, but I love the idea of writing, it feels cathartic. I love reading but don’t seem to have read as much as I would like by this age, I would not consider myself ‘well read’ who does? I hated English Language at school, picking apart a piece of text and analysing the words seemed to kill the magic for me. My adolescent self didn’t care about the formation of words and how cleverly they could be used, I just liked how reading made me feel and how much it made me think.

This attitude, is not however, consistent. I love to know how other things work and how they’re made. I am a trained seamstress and dress maker and I worked in theatre and television for years, I love the ‘behind the scenes’ scene. I wonder why I hate that so much in writing? Maybe its because I just don’t care to understand. I’d rather be romantically ignorant.

Anyway, because of this lack of enthusiasm for language I skipped studying it at a further level and let other people do that. My mum is a writer but has a completely different view to me, she loves to understand how words work and why we use them the way we do. She loves to edit and proof things and would die inside if she knew I was publishing something online without it first being passed under her critical and painfully accurate eye, but I am, gramatical errors and all.

No one who knows me knows I am doing this and I think I’d like to keep it that way. I have been told, on more than one occasion, that I cannot write but I don’t care. I like the therapeutic quality it holds for me, I like how empowered it makes me feel and I can only hope that it does improve my writing. I’m not sure what my goals and aspirations are for this blog yet, I think I’ll follow where it takes me.

Here goes nothing…

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