Getting The Mojo Back

I have been losing my fashion mojo of late.  A horrible thing to admit, I know.  While a bit of a slump pretty much happens every January/February and July/August, as the fun has worn off wearing that season’s clothes, this year it seems to be a more serious case.  I have struggled more in the mornings to get dressed and it’s not because I don’t have lots of great options in my closet.  It’s just that I haven’t been “feeling” them, if you know what I mean.  And until recently I didn’t even realize that was the issue, until a little incident got me thinking… 

As I headed out the door for work the other day Mr. Commando said “Wow! You look ready to kick butt” and I was genuinely surprised.   This was hardly an epic outfit.  Just black, wide-legged go-to trousers, black suede booties, black turtleneck tunic sweater, fun and funky wide black belt, my everyday silver jewelry, and a rather elderly Isabella Fiore East/West bag in black.  Now the belt *is* fab.  And the turtleneck (a turtleneck!) has some literal flare going in its bell sleeves but nothing groundbreaking, nothing even remotely au courant or truly trendy.  And yet my beloved was right – I looked good and more importantly I FELT it!!!  Whaaaa???? 

Why was this particular outfit so great?  Now asking him to articulate that was probably unfair.  He did his best but it was hardly illuminating and went something along the lines of “I dunno…its black….you look good…cool belt”.   But it did give me food for thought and as I pondered it further on my commute to work I had a bit of an epiphany. 

Last year I made a resolution to try new things in the fashion department.  And I did!  I tried new silhouettes – skinny jeans and leggings with longer tunics and asymmetric hems, I wore less black – adding a bit more color and more prints, and I even added a few more dresses and skirts to my repertoire.  But, while I like and even love some of the new things I don’t always feel as good in them as I would like.  Meanwhile other (older) pieces I know I look awesome in have been languishing in my closet – victims of my “new fashion” resolutions.  Good grief!  Is this a sign I have become old and I am firmly stuck in my own ruts unwilling to like new things, or is it because the new trends have left me feeling a bit fashion-victimy?

Perhaps not; perhaps it’s just that I haven’t really “owned” those new items, and some just aren’t really ME.  Meanwhile that black outfit is soooo me – those wide legged trousers have some swagger, the basics in black are a great canvas to highlight stellar accessories (a personal trademark) and the cuts highlight rather than hide my hourglass shape.  The other great thing about that particular ensemble is that there is a timelessness going for it.  It looks totally hip and cool without being any trend at all, which is the very best kind of fashion.  I realized that in taking on new fashions I had been a bit too literal, going for head-to-toe on-trend looks, and in the process had lost a bit of what makes my own personal style fabulous, and, more importantly, what makes it mine. 

I headed to my closet with this firmly in mind and looked at every outfit I had worn for the past few weeks and noted not just how I looked but how I felt.  What did I find?

1)      I am struggling between sizes and my shape has changed (again) so there are a few pieces that really need to be taken in, and a few that I need to let go; but overall what has always worked best for me, still does. 

2)      I am wearing more of the current silhouettes, but some of them look and feel schlumpy.  Clearly if I am going to wear leggings/skinny jeans I need to define my waist while keeping my posterior covered.  The tent thing is NOT working. 

3)      I do still like how I look in my wide-legged jeans and trousers best – in or out, this is MY LOOK – so some of those tunics are going to get belts or hemmed and paired up with them.

4)      I need to go back to wearing cropped/tailored jackets or cardigans – Even if they aren’t as “in” as they were, they are still much better on me than a boyfriend blazer – no matter how many times I try, the longer blazer makes me look like a barrel, one that is based on my widest parts no less, ugh.

5)      I still don’t love dresses and skirts so I can save my money and stop buying them for awhile, because clearly I am not wearing them!

This exercise gave me a much needed new perspective on my same old same old.  Fortunately this sort out didn’t result in a list of new stuff I needed, which is good ‘cause lately the stuff being offered has left me a bit flat and isn’t always terribly flattering either (muu-muu tops? – yeah, not so much).  But I did look at ways to mix what I have to freshen up what really works for me.  So expect to see less of my legs as I get back to wearing more of my favorite wide-legged jeans and trousers.  And I will be wearing more jackets – I feel just a tad more chic with an outstanding jacket, so its time to start wearing them more often.  And there will be more black – because I really love it.  

Lesson learned?  While it’s great to add new things and change it up from time to time, not all trends are created equally, and sometimes you have to stick to what is really your own look or you have to tweak a new trend to make it truly your own.  Hmmm…I feel my mojo coming on…

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