Changing Your Clothes

Shopping, Sewing, Upcycling, Repairing: Make the most of your clothes!


Who Am I, Anyway? (Part 2 of… many)

In my last post, the first of what promises to be an epic series, I confessed to a serious wardrobe identity crisis. This led to me biting the proverbial bullet by showing you pictures of what I really look like, body-shape-and-size-wise. (And thanks to all of you for your supportive and empathetic comments!) Today, I’ll show you what I was inspired to do with those photos to help this process along.

Already this process is leading me in unexpected directions. After finishing that last post, I suddenly felt much better! Could it be possible that simply facing up to what I had thought of as the truth about the way I look actually steered me straight? As I suspect many of us tend to do, I had fallen into the habit of focusing on what I perceived as the negative aspects of my body.

But after looking at those photos for a while, it occurred to me to think of it like this: What if that was a friend of mine, who had come to me for wardrobe advice? Would I be telling her that she’s too thick in the middle? Her shoulders are too narrow and her rib cage is too small for her bust? Of course not. I’d be telling her to focus on her assets, and dress to make the most of them.

So why am I not doing that for myself? Continue reading

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Changing Their Clothes: The Reinvention of 5 Classic Labels

Pringle of Scotland, Belstaff, Kenzo, Moncler, Pierre Cardin: 5 long-time fashion labels are reinventing their classic images with 21st-century style. Take a look at this slideshow, courtesy of Refinery 29.

Pierre Cardin, shown in July 2012

Pierre Cardin, shown in July 2012 (click on the photo to go to the slideshow)

I find this so inspiring— if a company like Pringle, which has been around since 1815 (!), can not only keep up, but also add something unique to the ever-changing fashion landscape, surely we can too!  And it shouldn’t require completely doing away with the old; Pringle has, for example, taken the classic tartans and argyles from their style archives and given them a fresh modern twist. Moncler started out making outerwear for mountain climbers, which it has now morphed into a sporty-chic fashion line! And Pierre Cardin, known in the 70s for his futuristic fashion vision, has softened those stark silhouettes into looks that brilliantly combine ease and structure.

Let’s take inspiration from these fashion icons, and look at our existing clothes in a new way. Okay, maybe those distressed (not to say tortured) jeans have seen better days, but they could be worn with sleek-heeled boots, close-fitting cabled sweater, and a colorful motorcycle jacket (don’t forget sunglasses!). That classic print wrap dress? Even though it never really goes out of style, it might still benefit from an update, courtesy of ombré tights, fringed suede booties, and a topping of faux-fur vest.

Me? I have a little black dress that I can’t bear to toss, but since I’m moving away from wearing black, I’m thinking maybe accessories (jewelry, gloves, maybe a capelet) in a palette of many shades of grey (much more flattering on me than black), with a single pop of really bright color would make this dress work for me; I have a large, deep gold bag that would be perfect with the greys.

What’s in your closet that could be reimagined? I’d love to hear your ideas!