I know I already published two posts today, but was feeling a little “spendy” and found myself falling down the rabbit hole on The Garmentory, so I decided to write instead and get a bit candid with myself, and whoever might be reading this, about why I might be feeling this way.
One of the reasons why I used to be so addicted to fast fashion, and why I still sometimes fail to curb my shopping, is that shopping is completely a form of stress relief for me. I always loved clothing, but never really bought things in excess until about 2012/2013, when I went through the graduating-college-who-am-I-losing-friends-bad-relationships phase that some of us go through.
During that time, I went through sort of a reinvention in a lot of ways, and some good things came out of it. I slowly became more confident, and also poured a lot of my emotional stress into doing volunteer work, which I still do (you can check out a bit more about one of my passions here!).
But, I also felt that I needed to reinvent myself in terms of appearance as well, and that’s how I ended up with such a massive closet. It felt empowering to be working full-time, to be able to buy clothes for myself that perhaps I couldn’t have afforded before, and to have that newfound confidence after feeling so low for such a long time. As much as I was growing up and finding myself internally, I was still deeply reliant on my external appearance to be a part of that process. I still felt that I needed to prove, outwardly, that I was worthy. Clothes were the band-aid for that.
I still have some of those bad shopping habits today, even though I am on a journey to be a more intentional consumer. I’ve been feeling pretty stressed about things lately and I can see those old habits wanting to creep in.
I know, I know, it’s like – “Get a hobby, Kell, and just stop shopping!” – 🙂 but I do have hobbies, a lot of them, and I still can feel impulsive about shopping when things get overwhelming. That’s why I try so hard to keep up with writing about fashion and documenting my outfits, to show myself I do have so many great pieces and I should look to being creative, and not spending more, as a form of stress relief. I always want my clothing to be something I enjoy, but not the thing that defines me or gives me my confidence. Which I allowed them to be for so long.
In order to not let my clothes take over my life, I’ve decided to give the following a try.
- A one month shopping freeze (on clothing, I’ll still buy necessities obviously).
- Consciously working to not let an outfit or a piece of clothing that I don’t love ruin my day.
- Reading more about the fashion industry and continuing to educate myself on the issues around how our clothing is made, in place of some of the time I’d spend researching ethical brands (which while interesting, does make me want to purchase more).
- Continuing to document the clothes I already have, and reflect upon what I do like about my outfits here and on my Instagram account.
In the interest of breaking away from shopping a bit, here’s a few intentional living/ conscious fashion things of interest from around the web that I’m really enjoying lately – hope you do too!
Why it’s worth reading: “It takes a garment worker 18 months to earn what a fashion brand CEO makes on their lunch break.”
Why it’s worth reading: “I am full of light, I will share it with others and I will not keep myself hidden in the world.”
Why it’s worth watching: “The world will say to you, ‘Be a better person.’ Do not be afraid to say yes.”
Why it’s worth reading: Ellie of Selflessly Styled is a lot more qualified to speak on this topic than me, and she has some great tips for having a healthier relationship with your wardrobe: “I was dependent on clothes for my external identity but they could never provide it.”
Why it’s worth reading: Valentine’s Day is coming up and love is in the air. I’ve always been enthralled by Zelda and F. Scott Fitzgerald’s dysfunctional relationship, and you can read some of her words here: “The sky closed over the lake like a gray oyster shell and pink pearls of clouds lay in the crease where the water met the Juras—still in the black iridescence and I wanted you to be there in the boat with me so I could watch the funny soft way you do things.”