I get into a state of frenzy as I mentally try to choose an already existent suitable outfit for the occasion that’s just been mentioned at work. My vision becomes blurry as I try to make up my mind which one of the few I have at home is best. A few seconds go by as my mind tries to pull back my horse-driven thoughts and acknowledge that I don’t have that much elegant clothing beckoning me. So I then go into a silent temper and consciously flaunt the I-don’t-care attitude in everyone’s face. I hear the usual muted chattering of some around me going into depths about the dresses they have to pick up or buy. Then the tables turn. They look at me excitedly and ask me what I’m going to wear. They then cannot hide their bewilderment at my shrugging of shoulders… and so the story goes each time some dressing-up occasion is hurled at me.
For a split second, I feel like a little unenlightened girl whose lack of fashion sense forces Mama Fashion to emerge and reprimand me for not keeping the promise I had made the last time I was invited to a ceremony – that of taking an interest in what’s in vogue. Yes I admit, if there’s one thing I dread, it’s dressing elegantly for an occasion, especially one that I’m forced to attend. I don’t mind the occasional wedding. In the last three years, shopping has become a chore. Since I do own a reasonable amount of clothes but always end up wearing the ones I feel most comfortable in, I find it silly to incessantly keep buying clothes, especially to wear for a one-off occasion. However, once in a while I tend to make an exception and buy something pretty… and I do feel like a happy girl who’s just acquired a new toy, but by the end of any formal event, I can already envision myself in comfy sportswear or simple pyjamas.
I’ve never quite grasped the concept of wearing what everybody else is just for the sake of fashion. I have a vivid memory of being at a disco once, and for a couple of seconds, I started seeing people around me swirling in slow motion. I noticed how many people were wearing the same clothes, even if they didn’t look good, but as long as they were following the latest fashion trends, who the hell cared? For example, there’s no way I’d wear a floral pleated dress which was – and still is – in fashion. I love gardens but not on people. To me, comfort is more important than fashion, although not all fashion trends are uncomfortable of course. If there’s anything I admire it’s being unique in one’s way of dressing. That for me is fashionable.
Moreover, trends constantly change and keeping up with them is exhausting. To top it all, there seems to be clothing that’s adapted for different times of the day. The older I get, the less I’m giving a toss about trends. I’m happy to be seen in my usual jeans, comfortable boots or summer shoes, and I find it boring discussing clothes and the like for long stretches of time with my female counterparts. Come to think of it, birds of a feather do flock together! I hardly ever talk about what’s hot and what’s not in fashion with any of my very close friends. We just couldn’t be bothered.
I also hate it when some people judge you by your dress sense. I wear what is comfortable and I refuse to follow fashion trends. And yes, it is a sort of defiance. I do admire the fact that fashion could be a form of art, but for some, fashion is not a priority, so live and let live. Clothing’s an artificial layer of skin. When you shed it off and take away your physical appearance, do you like what you find? That’s what’s most important at the end of the day, for me at least.
As long as you’re comfortable in your own skin, that’s what counts. Yes, fashionable clothes can make one feel confident, but I feel there’s more to confidence and happiness than just being a keen follower of fashion. So cheers to all the women who don’t give a damn about fashion. We may not represent the majority of our sex, but we are women too! We’re just not high maintenance, and that’s the beauty of diversity!