Tuesday, February 2, 2010

The I-don't-wear-pants-in-January idea.

I succeeded at the no pants challenge! With little photo proof, I might add...my apartment, along with having 8 different shades of cream, also does not possess a blank wall which is a suitable camera distance in order to take photos of my accomplishment. But I haven't given up trying! Fear not.

(taking the picture sitting down worked okay...)

...and I gotta say, beyond the physical/spatial problems, the whole taking-pictures-of-myself is a little hard. It feels a little---arrogant. For awhile, I took a picture of myself every day at IWU to give my younger brother a better sense of what I did and where I did it...and it just never went over that well, I guess? I don't know. I'd like to try it. A lot of fashion bloggers do a photo a day and manage to look classy, show off their purchases, style ideas, all that. I have a feeling I'd just look selfish in the worst way possible. But I'd still like to have a record of what I've worn --- I think that's kind of cool. I can't tell you how much I wish I would have taken pictures of myself every day of my junior year...I wore a different outfit every day, something made a million times easier by my 82 skirts. To look back on that....it would be priceless. So I may keep trying, despite the fact that it makes me feel a bit strange.

(at home...with the piano!)

And let's be serious...there is a very real difficulty in wearing the clothes I want to wear...I live and breathe the science/research lab safety code, which requires closed toed shoes, no bare legs, covered arms, tights. Also, the guys would kill me if I wore heels. And that doesn't even take into account that spills happen, which are detrimental to clothes even if not a safety hazard. I don't want to ruin some of my favorite vintage dresses...yet clothes are meant to be worn. So...yes. What am I to do? Live in jeans and tshirts? I mean, I do have a lot of clothes, yes, but I like to feel good about looking in the mirror, something that I don't feel when I see me reflected in jeans and a tshirt. I just feel...scrubby. Not me. And I'm not trying to be the fashionista on campus; let's be clear in that even trying to do that at MIT makes you look ridiculous for a whole array of reasons which are as follows:

"She's trying so hard on her clothes she must not be capable of any coherent thought. She probably only got in because she looked good in her suit on interview weekend."

"Gosh, having time to look good means you have less time to study. Ergo, I only bathe once a week, and sleep only four hours a night. That means I win, right?"

"Poser" (I was on the steps of lobby 7 when I noticed the girl in front of me, nicely dressed, still had the very obviously colored tags from DSW on the bottom of her very spike-heeled boots. They were INCREDIBLY obvious. I let her know, and she laughed and said, "Oh, I always leave those on so I can return them when I'm done." Uh. Right. Sorry I tried to be nice)

"She's obviously rich enough to buy clothes like that, so she doesn't have to study. What a punter." (punt = to not do your homework/not care about school work in MIT-ese)

"She's gotta be a Sloanie." (Sloan = business school)

So, where do I fit in? I asked the guys in my lab what they thought about tights one day, and while the general thought was "no comment cause this girl is going to slap me if I say the wrong" sort of response, one of the guys just kind of went off on people being fashionable and wearing this versus that simply because it is fashionable. He described the girls that wait in front of Middle East, a local club, "with their vintage dresses and necklace-things and all that. It's nonsense."

"But I wear vintage dresses. So where does that leave me?"

He said, without missing a beat, "You don't wear things because they're fashionable. You wear things because you want to. And that isn't nonsense. It's just you."

So how do I give off that vibe? I don't think me starting my own style blog quite works (duh). But how do I let me speak for just ME instead of being mistaken for someone I'm not? Vintage dresses and all?

I don't have a clue.

I rest my case until I become Mrs. Frizzle and have dinosaurs on my shoes. The end.

1 comment:

Emily said...

You know, I've been pondering this issue of dressing a lot lately. I've acquired almost a whole new wardrobe of vintage/secondhand clothes since I've moved, and am excited to dress up a little in them, but part of me feels like that's somehow antithetical to me being a grad student. It's not nearly the challenge you have, because (1) I don't work in a lab (or not one where clothing is relevant, anyway), (2) Berkeley is a pretty free about clothing - people where whatever the hell they want, and (3) I get mistaken for an undergrad all the time anyway. But it still gives me pause every morning, and leads me to typically more conservative choices.

(Love your dress in the first picture, by the way!)