What do you do when what you’ve worn for what feels like forever no longer works?
About a month ago I was out for a shopping stroll with my two besties. We’ve been friends since university days and together we’ve been through four weddings, one divorce, the death of two parents, the birth of five children, several career changes and more pounds lost and gained and lost than should be divulged. These women have seen me through my preppie polos & pearls, my back-to-the-lander look, my sleep-deprived ponytail & hoodie mom days and most recently, The Uniform of my executive years. To say they know me – and my unreliable fashion sense – is an understatement.
For the last decade or so my self-imposed uniform has been a suit or a LBD (Little Black Dress) with a jacket. Occasionally I’d swap out a black dress for a grey one and if I was feeling adventurous, I might mix it up with something red. My ‘hose, shoes, boots and blouses were almost always black. My coats were black. There was a LOT of black.
On our most recent shopping date I was lamenting to my friends that I was at a sartorial crossroads. What to wear, now that I didn’t need/want to wear The Uniform? What should replace the LBDs and conservative black pumps? My taste runs to filmy, flowing clothing handmade from eco-friendly fabrics by artistic young people, one fabulous stand-alone piece at a time. Alas, what appeals to my heart looks like crap on my body. The beautiful clothes I’m drawn to look best on slim-hipped, long-legged basketball players whereas I’m a short hourglass with a little too much time on her hips.
I’d grown used to a limited wardrobe of basic staples that I could always count on to look good. Now that I don’t trek into the office five days a week I didn’t know what to wear anymore. And then it hit me like Fashion Week in New York. Of course I know what to wear now.
A limited wardrobe of basic staples that I can always count on to look good and feel good wearing.
I’ve always been a fan of capsule dressing. I remember lying on the floor at my parents’ house carefully going through the Eaton’s catalogue and creating wonderful mix and match wardrobes for my fantasy adult life. When Donna Karan introduced her 7 Easy Pieces in the mid-80’s I felt like I was coming home. So why wouldn’t I stay with my capsule wardrobe philosophy and just change it up for my new routine of working from home?
In my next clothing-related post I’ll tell you how I built my Spring/Summer 2015 (Semi) Minimalist Wardrobe. Until then, here’s a sneak peek of what it looks like.