Sunday, 12 October 2008

On Quantity


"Do you have a lot of clothes?", Lina asked me the other day. "Umm... yes... I do... or what do you mean, a lot?", I replied. "Well, do you have a lot?", she specified. Off I went to explain the amount of space I have reserved for my clothes, and as I was doing so, I realised how ridiculous I sounded. I am sure compared to Mariah Carey I don't have many clothes at all, but as my current situation stands, and my double-doored wardrobe, two chests of drawers, a walk-in-closet and two other closets are not enough, I guess I do have a lot of clothes.

Today I started to think that perhaps I have been hoarding clothes because I have trouble defining my style. I try all sorts of styles, and even though I find my experiments awarding, they don't necessarily say much about me. Then take someone like Lina, for example: She confesses that she does not have many clothes, but she has one of the most distinct styles I have ever come across. Whatever she wears, she looks exactly as she should. She never looks out of place in her clothes. Her style compliments her personality in a way that I find astounding. She was photographed for the street style section of Helsingin Sanomat about a year ago, wearing random things she had just thrown on in about 10 seconds because she had to run across the street to meet a friend. Give me 10 seconds to decide what to wear, and I will suffer a nervous breakdown.



If I had to choose, say, 10 key pieces that define my wardrobe or my style, I would be at a loss. Perhaps this is the reason why it always takes me days to pack if I go out of town. I just don't know what I will feel like wearing on a given day. On the one hand, this is very exciting because I get to be creative and play with different sides of my personality, but on the other, it is very consuming, both on my mental state as well as my wallet. I think I do struggle with my sense of style more than most. I have not figured out yet what this says about me as a person.

10 comments:

T said...

Coincidentally, when I was in NY this week, I happened to catch a bit of the Today show where Isaac Mizrahi makes over some girls and tells us what their problems are.

One girl's problem was that she had too many clothes. So many that she didn't know what she had in her wardrobe, and was so overwhelmed by the choices that she ended up wearing clothes that didn't match.

Isaac's tip was to take inventory of what you have, categorize your clothes, and spend more on less. Of course, you can debate the merits of listening to a fallen fashion-turned-Target designer, but I think it's good advice.

styledigger said...

Beautiful...I love your dress!

esme and the lane way said...

I think I am the same – lots of different things! I like them all at one point, though...

Milla said...

I know how you feel, boy do I ever! I have way too many clothes and none of them match at all, so that I am always struggling to find something to wear and often end up wearing things that aren't "me" at all, just to get out of the house.

And it's not just clothes, it's hats, bag, jewellery, and shoes too, so that often I just sit in a pile of clothing and feel at loss...

I think it's because of an undefined personality as well, the inability to explain in less than 10 words, or items of clothing who I am...

Vasiliisa said...

You know, I get so tired of the advice to get a "compact wardrobe" where "everything goes with everything". It is not for everybody. Don't worry, you're perfectly normal!

minni said...

I read through most of your blog again to find the post I was looking for. (I finally found it in june.) It was about how you have trouble answering when people ask you about your style.

I have to agree with Vasiliisa. Why should we all follow the stupid rule about compact wardrobe? I'm just happy to know I'm not the only one struggling with my style.. I don't like to put clothes for the next day ready in the evening, because I want to decide in the morning who I want to be today.

I bought pink boots today, high heels (8cm) and everything.. I was wearing a t-shirt, my husbands army pants and my hummel sneakers, the beige ones you liked ;) So the boots I was buying did not quite suit my todays style at all. But they'll suit my style on wednesday, when I need them, so who cares :)

I LOVE the dress!

Hailey @ stylesymmetry.com said...

I have so much trouble packing/defining my style. Why does it matter thou? It is so fun to try different things.

The Waves said...

t: I have tried inventory and common sense so many times... and it doesn't help! Thanks for the advice though :)

styledigger: thanks! I don't really shop much at Mango, but this dress was way too cute to leave behind, especially since it was -70% and cost practically nothing.

esme and the lane way: I thinking "liking" is my problem too... I just like a bit of everything! :)

milla: perhaps we should define ourselves as something undefinable :)

vasiliisa: thank you, I so needed to hear that!

minni: I cannot wait to see your pink boots!

hailey: I agree, it really does not matter. There are just days when I don't have anything else to worry about than my clothes, which I guess I should be really happy about! :)

a cat of impossible colour said...

I have been thinking about this lately too. I have been trying to pare down my wardrobe and be very conscious of what I buy and how it will fit in with everything else ... but it's hard.

kittyscreations said...

I have the opposite problem: I live in a house with tiny closets, so I have to keep my clothes limited to what will fit in a 3 foot wide 2 foot deep closet and a chest of drawers. I frequently purge clothes to make room. However, I have had a habit of purging too much and later regretting it. I guess there has to be a balance between hoarding and purging.