Fashion is physical, fashion sense is mental, and fashion expression is spiritual. I have been accused before of reading into things too deeply. To a person that has zero interest in fashion, this can be obnoxious. I can be obnoxious. However, I would argue that anything in this life can be studied in depth. This in depth study will always reveal things to us beyond the readily apparent. Therefore, I am not upset about people not being super into fashion or argueing that everyone needs to think about fashion as much as I do. But, we should all study the things in our lives that affect or interest us. This is how we learn and grow.
Now, this is not a philosophy blog. So, back to the fashion. What you wear tells the viewer stuff about you that might not be intentional. For example, when you see someone in baggy sweats and a hoodie out in public, one might assume that person is a lazy slob. When you see someone in a short skirt and heels, one might assume they are a slut. We might not know that person or ever see them again, but we make that snap judgement that throws a human being, made up of a complex combination of a soul, mind, and body, into a fairly small box. That one judgement or assumption leads to others, and they all begin before we even talk to that person. We have really demonized this very innate human reaction in modern society, because we have “evolved” to the point where we think that our feelings are paramount and need to be prioritized above all. I believe this goes against our biology as humans. That is why it is such a losing battle to make this social justice movement of speaking politically correct all the time the first priority of existing as a human in the modern age. Now, this is not to say that these snap judgements are okay, but that they are somewhat unavoidable. When we experience these snap judgements, I think it would be far more beneficial to recognize them and understand that my feelings about someone’s look are not facts. No matter how many times you have been “right about people” in the past, we should not let these snap judgements decide how we treat someone either. We are to go through life acting out of love and living at peace with all people, as the Good Book says. We, of course, will not always do this, because we are flawed. We have to be willing to accept the consequences for our actions or words that come from these snap judgements.
Now that I have told you all how to react to other people’s fashion choices, let us talk about your fashion choices. I have mentioned before that when I say “successful personal style”, I am talking about a style that effectively communicates our goals or priorities with our appearance and life in general. To do this, we can not turn off our brains when making choices about our garments. I can not even count how many times I have helped someone pick out something to wear and either they are not able to explain why they want to wear something, or they are not willing to admit why they want to wear something. I try to help people through this by asking questions and encouraging them get to the bottom of why they want to wear something or what they want to achieve with whatever they are trying to pick out. In college, it was hard not to try to just be as hot as you possibly could, because it honestly felt like a competition of who can be the most desireable. This greedy aspiration is so empty and superficial though, because that would be the reason for what we wore. If we were honest with what our goal was, it was to find a person we had a genuine connection with. Therefore, our choices did not get us any closer to our goal. We would dress all hot and sexy and get a lot of attention fueled by sex and desire, but be left with emptiness after we recieved the affirmation or attention. That is why it is important to find where our reasons and goals intersect, so that we are working in one direction. I speak about this from personal experience with my own fashion choices and spending time with others discussing their fashion choices.
This look is really just a collection of things I like. The jacket is a thrift store find from the Tower Grove neighborhood of St Louis. I love that it has quilting details, because of my obsession with all things old lady. The corduroy details just send it over the top as a must-have coat, and it is so warm and cozy. The sweater is as interesting. It has a wide neck that does not seem like it is meant to go off the shoulder, but does allow you to wear it in a few different ways. I was drawn to it in a thrift store in Aspen, Colorado last summer. I was just out exploring the small mountain community in between matches for the grass volleyball tournament that I was there for. So, it also holds that fond memory for me. The green corduroy pants are another thrift store find as well as the belt. I really have just gotten used to being pretty free with my choices on what I take off the rack. They are usually founded in what I like about fashion most, and that’s having fun with it.
Edited by: Rachel Kater Photos by: Moriah Roberts