Rejecting Fashion…

Last night I spent some time watching TV, which is my last choice for entertainment, usually opted for when I’m to tired to read or write, and just want to take off my glasses and shut down. But I have little patience for commercials and less for laugh tracks, so I check what’s on PBS. Fortunately, I caught the start of a wonderful documentary on Grand Central Station. Unfortunately, I fell asleep shortly after, which is a shame. What little I saw was fascinating, but exhaustion and a comfy couch won out.

I woke later on to find Charlie Rose speaking with two people, discussing fashion. The neat, conservatively dressed young lady, apparently from Elle Magazine, said something along the lines of how ‘some people reject fashion. But to reject fashion is a fashion statement itself.’

Wow. All these years, I’ve been making a fashion statement! Who woulda thunk? You see, I lean towards whatever happens to be A. Clean, B. Comfy, and C. A few sizes too big. Colors are muted, layers are good. Doc Martins are the footwear of choice. I may wear a cute tank top, but it’ll be combined with men’s cargo pants and a flannel shirt. I suppose it ties into growing up wearing my brother’s hand-me-downs as play clothes, and spending too much time mucking about in boats. Or maybe it was the Barbie-deprivation. When I was little, my mom strongly believed Barbies were awful toys for little girls, for all the obvious reasons. Instead, I was provided Tonka Trucks, toy boats, and all the rubber lizards my heart desired, and couldn’t have been happier. True, I didn’t spend my time dressing and redressing dolls with other girls, then again, I had my very own little sailboat to sail around the world, (or at least as far as possible before my parents sent my brother in his outboard boat to tow me back.) By high school, I’d missed that whole clothes and make-up memo, though I was more preoccupied with getting a bigger boat and heading off to far away places than I was with the mirror. But along the way, I missed the boat on fitting in to general society. Sometimes channel surfing or a trip to the mall leaves me feeling as though I’m visiting a foreign land, observing a culture I don’t fully grasp.

Before I go any further, I should mention I can, and often do, dress very nicely. I have a select collection of stylish shoes, elegant black skirts and blouses, classic, tailored dresses and jackets, and I get regular complements on how well I dress. But I don’t consider this “Fashion.” At least not fashion in the sense of what I see in those telephone book sized magazines in my dentist’s waiting room, where stick figures strut and pout in what resemble trash bags. I just don’t get it. When I clothing shop, I seek out things I could imagine Audrey Hepburn wearing. And anything I buy must play nice with with everything else already occupying the closet. It is a simple method, and an effective one. I have a tasteful, flattering collection that is neither in or out of fashion, and so long as I keep walking the dogs and stay in shape, does not require seasonal replacement based upon what the fashion industry dictates. Still, when I flip around the TV, scenes from Sex and the City and the recent clones, (I know, I don’t watch them so I shouldn’t say that,) with women gathering to shop or discuss designers and shopping, leave me baffled, and ultimately, switching back to Channel 13 and documentaries on lava flows, birds in Australia, and Grand Central Station.

BTW, Thanks, Mom! 🙂

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