Into the Mystic
It occurs to me that we’ve all seen that girl. You know. The one that’s chubby, but has so much style and grace that you almost don’t notice her size. I had a coworker like that. (Sadly, she’s changed jobs now and I don’t get to see her very often.)
We were at lunch one day. For whatever reason, I started studying her. What was it about her that made her stand out so differently than the others of us that were so obviously plus-size?
She was confident, kind, and beautiful. Plus, she had the best outfits I’ve ever seen anyone put together. She never looked like she wore the same thing twice. I wondered where she shopped. At first, I was embarrassed to tell her that I had no idea how to dress myself in more than a limited sort of way. But, finally I opened up to her and little by little she gave me the first bits of information I needed to get started. Where to shop on-line. Where to find clothes in regular stores.
Because of her, I began to want more in the way of my own personal style, but I had no idea what that was. I often thought of my journey as “going into the mystic.”
The first thing I learned is that fashion and style are not the same thing. I’m a big fan of Project Runway. It’s thrilling to watch how an outfit forms in the mind of the designer, how it gets made and then how it looks on the runway. Many times I’ve noticed that I’ll love something that the judges hate. For a while, I thought that meant that I didn’t have an eye for fashion. Over time, I’ve come to understand that it’s not about knowing or not knowing fashion for me. I’m not a judge of what will sell a magazine or make the next big designer.
No, all I’m doing is looking at something they designed and thinking about whether I would like to wear it or not.
After a little over a year of trying to find my own personal style, I’ve realized something vital. It’s not just about the clothes. It’s really about finding out that deepest layer that is my truest self and learning how to convey that to others.
Here are a few things I’ve learned about my personal style:
Small changes = Big changes. The dress that I’m wearing is a basic fit-and-flare dress that I bought at Old Navy. In the past, I probably would have just worn it on its own with a jacket. This time, I added a scarf that my mother gave me for Christmas a few years ago. That small change made a huge difference. It added a pop of color and blended the bold colors of the jacket and dress. It did wonders for how I felt about myself.
Uniquely Me. I’m pretty sure that I’m not the only woman in the world that owns this dress. Not the first to pair it with a pair of boots and a jean jacket. However, when I added this scarf, I suddenly realized that I had my own distinct look.
The Confidence Booster Effect. Taking care to look my best gives me a big boost of confidence. I’m learning that people respond to me differently when I feel good about myself. It no longer seems as though my weight is the first thing people notice about me. Instead, I find people are more responsive and respectful. As a result, I gain more confidence.
Breaks the Negativity Chatter. I am very guilty of having negativity chatter that goes on in my head. It’s that never-ending cycle of “does this make me look fat? or short? or pale?” Feeling put together broke this cycle for me because I’m feeling too good to pay attention to the chatter. It’s also made me a much happier person.
I also discovered one thing that’s actually pretty awesome. The journey to finding my true style never ends. It’s ongoing and evolving like the ocean tide rolling in and rolling out into the mystic.
I’m curious, does what you wear affect your mood?
Thanks for stopping by to visit with me today.