It’s halfway through the summer and I have pretty much convinced myself to stop buying summer clothes. Actually, I am seriously embarrassed by the piles of clothes in my bedroom that I haven’t worn yet!
The fact is, I’ve learned how to choose pieces but I haven’t learned how to put the outfits together. If I see an outfit in a magazine and i have similar pieces, I can mimic the outfit. But I have a lot to learn about fashion.
So I have a sheer, floral print top. I bought it for $16.00 on ebay. It has small cap sleeves and fitted layers in the bodice.Last summer I would have probably chosen a pair of shorts to match one of the flowers in the print. But now I am actually trying to learn about fashion. I had just bought linen capris at a thrift store for $1.00. but i wasn’t sure if they would work. So I found the internet equivalent of ‘wearing floral print for dummies’. In this case it was in an article called “How to Wear Floral Print”, posted on http://www.collegefashion.net/fashion-tips/how-to-wear-floral-print/ . And perhaps an even more basic one, from ehow: http://www.ehow.com/how_2129604_wear-floral-patterns-style.html
It might seem elementary. That’s because it is. If you want to do something new, you have to learn how. And it’s good for your brain-when you learn new things you stimulate new connections in your brain. That is a plausible excuse for a poor 40-year-old mom trying to create Welfare Chic.
I did learn what to wear with the floral print top. It had an ivory background, blue and orange flowers, and green leaves and stems. I had those linen capris in mind but I just wasn’t sure. The first step was choosing the size of the floral. That part was done for me, my top was a medium print. Too small florals are babyish, and they remind me of the Mennonite girls who rode their bikes around my hometown. Big prints scare me. They bring to mind not-so-slender ladies wearing giant Hawaiian mumus. I might be headed that way and I’m not ready to turn that corner!
The article told me to wear a pant or skirt in the same color as the background color in the floral. Bingo, linen capris! They are only about a shade darker than the background of the top. Following another suggestion from the article, I added some simple floral accessories in the same color palette. I planned on wearing a neutral shade pair of flats, but went with a comfortable pair of tan keds instead. I didn’t think anyone would notice.
Ultimately, that is the whole point. They won’t notice the shoes. They won’t notice the tiny bit of makeup I put on. They won’t notice how stylish the pink floral cocktail ring. Playing with fashion in a small rural town is largely a private endeavor. If anyone notices,they’ll probably be thinking why is she wearing that tacky ring? This is not something you do to show off. You do it if you want to.
So take it or leave it. Right now, I’m having fun with fashion. But I’m careful about it. Around town I do keep my style conservative. I’m not doing this to attract attention. That might seem strange, but it is true. I am creating a look, developing a personal style. I’m not stressing about it. After all, they won’t notice the shoes.