Fall in LOVE With Your Style
Your style is your best accessory; why not show it some daily love? We know, we know–finding the perfect outfit to strut in can be ridiculously stressful and downright off-putting. From the stores that don’t have (safe) fitting rooms…to the “why-is-everyone-and-their-mama-here?” checkout line… to the debit card that just won’t go through–sigh!–there has to be a better way to move through this world fabulously.
Well, if you’re into budgeting fashion like moi, there are plenty of things you can do on a regular basis to ensure that your style is shown love, all year round!
KNOW YOUR STYLE, AND OWN IT!
Our style is such an important part of who we are as individuals. Part of being comfortable with ourselves as LGBTQ folks comes from understanding and loving our own individual styles. Keep in mind, what’s stylish for some may not translate that way for others. Reasons for this can range from differences in body shape to gender presentation.
So answer this question: What is your style? Do you prefer a more “feminine” or “masculine” look? Do you like to cover up or show off your beautiful body? Do you like bright colors or do you prefer a more toned-down palette?
Jot down a list of a few must-have items that reflect your spirit. Write down why you love each item. This list can used for future reference or can be a reminder that you have your own unique style. It can make things run a lot smoother when picking an outfit, by matching items to go with/against the look on your list!
Here’s my list, as an example:
• Infinity Scarves–because they go on forever and ever. And I love eternal anything!
• Leggings- because they’re affordable and are more comfortable for my body to move around in.
• My Afro–because afros are awesome.
• Combat Boots–because they’re just so darn comfortable!
Dress for yourself. No one else should determine what your style is. After all, it is your style. Be fabulous, on your own terms! Love what you’re wearing–because at the end of the day, your outfit should make you happy!
Of course, there’s the occasional outfit that you may put on to get that special someone’s attention. But for the everyday on-the-go look? Do it for you, boo, do it for YOU.
[Many of us experience shame and hate from folks because of our bodies, identities, or sexual orientation. As a result, some of us may be uncomfortable with fully claiming our own style and wearing it proudly. If this is you, I’d love to help you to brainstorm some ways to make you feel safe and comfortable in your own attire. I’m here to help and listen; feel free to send me a message: Share@onepluslove.com.]
STAY WITHIN YOUR BUDGET.
Seriously, I can’t stress this enough. If you can’t afford an item, it’s alright to tell it “goodbye” or “see you later, boo.” All you have to do is turn around and find something you can afford and say “Hiii!” If you can’t afford anything at all, there’s no shame in that either. Respect where you are financially.
Valentine’s Day, like many holidays, can be a trap to lure you into purchasing clothes you don’t need. There is no reason to spend your rent or grocery money on an outfit. I’ve been there, and trust me–it’s not worth it in the long run! If you’re really tight on money, shop at a thrift store. Also–only if you can afford it–clearance racks are heaven.
Psssssttt: consider creating or attending a clothing swap. A few friends of mine have started hosting clothing swaps with other LGBTQ folks in their neighborhoods. This is a free way to receive clothes, while also giving away items to others that may need it. Check in with folks at your local LGBTQ centers and other non-profits to see if they host clothing swaps. Or perhaps you or a friend can create a space for a clothing swap in your neighborhood. FYI: you don’t have to bring clothes to give at a clothing swap. They are shame-free. If you’re in need, this is definitely a safe and private option to snatch up some free clothing!
Here are two websites that may be helpful for some folks: the Trans Clothes Swap and Clothing Swap Meetup Groups.
LOVE WHAT YOU ALREADY HAVE!
The items you own are in your possession for a reason. That’s not to say that your taste in clothing can’t or shouldn’t change. But don’t throw shade on what you’ve already got! If you’ve got a date with someone or if you’re planning on hangin’ solo while watching Netflix in style, consider sticking with what you’ve already got. If you aren’t able to purchase or get new items, try upcycling or making tweaks or additions to your clothes. Youtube has hundreds of tutorials with tips on how to upgrade your look based on what you already own. There’s nothing wrong–and everything right– with revamping an old tee, especially with a few colors of the rainbow. 😉
Check out these awesome videos: