Monday, August 31, 2015

A Word on Fashion from the T-Shirt Queen

First of all, let me say this has been a very Mondayish Monday. I overslept because last night whilst wasting time on my phone I turned the volume all the way down so as not to awaken The Redneck next to me, and I failed to turn it back up. So my alarm was going off, SILENTLY, for an hour and twenty minutes before the sun beaming in on me startled me to reality. So we were late to school. Which means the girls got a "red ticket," the first one for the Kindergartener. She had just told me last week she hoped she never got "one of those red pieces of paper." We made it two weeks. Cheers! Then the van started making weird dying noises so I went next door to my parents' to borrow their 1999 Dodge Durango with the "W '04" sticker on the back windshield, just in case anyone wants to know who they supported 11 years ago. Monday.

Secondly, this is a totally frivolous post. The time I spent writing it could have been better used. The money I discuss in it could have been better spent. Please don't send me emails lecturing me. I am aware of my American excess. This post will not make you love Jesus more. There will be nothing deep here, in case you couldn't tell from the title.

Except for this:


We have got to get control of how 
we view our bodies. 

I have never been, how do you say it, petite? Small? Skinny? Thin? None of those things. In fact, a story has been told REPEATEDLY (Mother!) about how when I was still in the hospital, mere hours after my appearance into the world, someone stood me on the bed, and there was cellulite on the back of my thighs. So I blame my mom and the things she ate while pregnant for starting me off as a member of the Chunky Crew.

I used to think about my body alot. Like, all the time. Examining my rear from every angle. Mourning the fact I had inherited the "family hips" which would make childbirth so easy for me. (They didn't.) Buying cream that promised if I used it I would be able to magically rub my dimples away. Constantly asking, "Does this make me look fat?" (By the way, if there are any men left reading this post, the answer to that is always, "No!" Do not hesitate. Do not smile. Do not change your expression. When I say your life is literally on the line I am not exaggerating.)

But then God changed my perspective on all that when we had girls, and I read a book by Dr. James Dobson called Bringing Up Girls

This book was a game changer for me as a person, not just as a mother of three girls. I never knew that all women thought about this stuff. Even the thin supermodels have some area of insecurity - lips, nose, eyes, something. Suddenly the playing field was level. And now the playing field didn't matter! This is not my heavenly body. It is not perfect. It will fail me completely some day in the not-too-distant future. So, ok. Now that I know we are all thinking about it, let's all not. I am created in the image of God, I am taking care of the body He gave me, and when I criticize it I am mocking His handiwork.

Plus I run, lift weights, can do a bunch of pushups without stopping, can squat 250 pounds no problem, and yet the sagging baby stomach and there-since-day-one cellulite remain. Probably because I like chocolate and really all desserts except ice cream, and I think God put caramel on Earth to make up for the evil creation of onions. So you can be fit and strong...and cellulitey.

Anyways, now that I have that little lecture out of the way, thus begins the real post.

I really hate clothes. I hate shopping, I hate constantly having to decide what to wear. Why are T-shirts I got for free when volunteering for something not acceptable attire at black-tie events? 

But I am going to be subbing sometimes, and my last job only required scrubs. (EVERYONE in ALL walks of life should wear scrubs. They are amaze.) So I really needed to clean out and update.

I have a friend who claims her secret ninja skill is shopping, and she mentioned the idea of a "Capsule Wardrobe" a few months ago. (By the way, I think my secret ninja skill might just be the ability to say tongue twisters. Jealous much?)

The idea here is that you create a wardrobe for each season, with each mini-wardrobe containing somewhere between 25 and 37 pieces, depending on whose blog you read. Some pieces may go in two capsules. And once the capsule is created, the goal is to only need to replace 4 or 5 pieces each season.

Even this much thought about clothes makes me want to cry into my t-shirt drawer. 

But I took some time to read some blogs, look at some Pins (on the app guaranteed to make you feel fat and uncrafty, although I did find the following pictures there that make me laugh every single time I look at them - sometimes Preston and I type "Funny" into the search bar and then laugh hysterically while we ignore the girls)   

 This picture makes me cry laughing. 
Preston and this guy would be BFFs.

And this. When you grow up with a for-real genius 
for a brother, who happens to be in the grade ahead of you,
you learn to say smart things to impress the teachers without
knowing what the crap you are saying.

Anyways, I did some more research on this "Capsule Wardrobe" thing and decided it would be worth a try. So here's my modified version of it:

1. Try on everything in your closet. Cry when you cannot zip the skirt from Banana Republic you got junior year of college and have been saving for when you lose 10 15 35 pounds. 

2. If you put something on and you don't love it - like LOOOOOOVE it - put it in the give-away pile. Bye-bye, Banana Republic. I came up with about three Target-sized bags of clothes that no one will want, but I'm going to take to Thrift Smart anyways. 

3. Figure out what you need to buy. Since I hadn't shopped in approximately 10 years, the list wasn't too long. 
       1. Clothes that are in style.

4. Set aside a shopping day. I loathe shopping unless it is for t-shirts, so I knew I needed to knock this out in one day. I never shop. My mom, who is the most beautiful, fashionable 67 year old out there buys me winter clothes for Christmas, summer clothes for my birthday and that is all. I do not shop in between. Except for jeans and t-shirts. I am not ashamed that my mommy still does the majority of my shopping. I love her all the more for it. But I spent about three hours today shopping.

And here is the finished product:

A lot of these things I actually had. I got 11 new items, and I spent $215, which I think is crazy thrifty of me. And now the thought is that I can go into my capsule closet, pick out a top and bottom, add a scarf or necklace and jacket, throw on some boots, and it will go together and actually look put together. I ended up with 42 clothing items and 7 pairs of shoes. (By the way, you don't count accessories or work out clothes in your final piece count according to the Official Capsule Wardrobe of Martha) I am slightly over the limit of most Capsule Wardrobe people, but since fall and winter kind of run together in this region I will only have two capsules, so I think it's ok. And I have a couple pieces I might still weed out. Plus no one from the Capsule Wardrobe Police is coming to check, so all is well.

By the way, I have decided sizing is pointless. The fashion industry shouldn't even bother. Those skinny jeans in the top corner are a size 12, but the boot cut jeans I have on right now are a size 8. The chambray shirt I got is a small, and the colorful plaid in the foreground is an XL. Sizes are a joke. Ignore them

Side note - Some mom friends and I were recently texting about the ripped jeans phenomenon when one received a pair in her latest Stitchfix box, and she wasn't sure she could pull them off. These rips have also made lots of appearances at functions I have been to lately. I tried on a pair, but I couldn't get my dad's voice out of my head, saying how as a boy he was always proud of how stiff and dark his new jeans were - that faded, ripped, patched jeans shouted out that your family was poor. But ripping is "in" right now judging from the pile of jeans at the front of Every Single Store in the mall. I decided to not purchase them since my fat squeezed out through the ripped places, but some of you look super cute in your rippedness.  

So that is how I spent my day. And then I wasted more time and blogged about it. The breakfast dishes are still in the sink. Also, I probably could have waited two more months to do this seeing as how it is still step-outside-and-sweat-hot here. I bet Preston will be really glad about our decision for me to not go back to work so I can take care of the girls and house when he reads this.

But now, hopefully, I won't have to shop until I get ready to make a spring/summer capsule. Thankfully t-shirts are pretty much the uniform of summer around here, so maybe I won't have to shop at all!

Grace for the T-shirt Lover and the Wearer of All Things Couture, Too, 

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