The Sisterhood of the Clothes-That-No-Longer-Fit

Spring is here, which means it's time to purge the wardrobe... Yet again. In my case, it's not so much about purging outdated trends as much as making a pile of clothing I no longer fit. I measured my waistline earlier this week and it measured a horrifying 27 inches around. Miraculously, I can still squeeze into some of my size 26 jeans. It makes me wonder how on earth I could've ever once fit into a size 24. 

But I digress...

I've decided that, instead of selling the nice things on eBay or The RealReal, I'd rather send them to family or friends. I take very careful consideration in matching these items, mind you: an Hermès bangle for Ashley, a leather motorcycle jacket for my sister, high-waisted flared jeans for Amandine, a lacy La Perla number for Ana...In other words, I'm not sending everyone a box of junk. These items are also accompanied by a little typewritten note and, if I have tissue paper, I'll wrap it all up lovingly before sending.

I asked Amandine if she's worn those jeans yet. No, she replied, they were quite nice but not very flattering for her bum. Oh, I say. But she assures me that she does wear the Reformation bodysuit I sent her! I was glad to hear–I knew she'd like that piece. "I like wearing something from you," she told me, "It's like that little treasure or secret."

 

 

The Ease of a Minimal Wardrobe

I have a bit more than what you see here–but not much more.

Six years ago, I had twelve huge boxes' worth of clothes, shoes, and accessories. Today, my entire wardrobe could probably fit into one (if I really smushed it in, that is). I've long come to the realization that I actually despise having to think about what to wear. I've spent the past three years culling the best of my wardrobe and happily bidding farewell to the rest. Getting rid of old clothes feels like shedding off the many skins of the past. It's highly therapeutic and cathartic in that way:

Arrivederci to the many Prada sleeveless shift dresses that I will never wear ever again!

So long to all of my H&M and Zara emergency mistake purchases!

Au revoir to my vintage Courrèges silk faille top that would look so much cuter on my friend Amandine!

At the end of the day, I'm left with very few basic pieces, but they're the ones I love to wear most often. That's the goal, really, to just have pieces of clothing that are versatile and mix well together, then scour for inspiration* to fill-in-the-blanks with for the rest. How great would it be to just pack up everything in a giant suitcase and go, knowing you'll look good anytime, anywhere? 

My current wish list includes: a nice handbag, a nice jacket or blazer, a nice overcoat, and a nice pair of statement earrings. Once I have the baseline covered, I'd like to throw in: a really interesting pair of shoes, a special dress, a really elegant and sexy top, some one-of-a-kind vintage pieces, and well-tailored pants. Adding jewelry to the list might be a little bit of a reach, I think, but I do love great jewelry!


*I've always liked Angelina Jolie's monochromatic, anonymous style; Vanessa Traina has an unfussy yet chic and pulled together look; Emmanuelle Alt and Barbara Martelo nail it with everyday looks. If only I could emulate any or all of these muses...

 

The Frequency of Transformation

 

My friend Amandine shared this link to a YouTube video that plays the Solfeggio frequency of 528Hz, which is a frequency based on an ancient 6-tone scale and believed to repair your DNA and impart energy to it. When I Googled this frequency, I was fascinated to discover that these sounds are intertwined with spirituality, DNA, music, mathematics and quantum physics.  I've been playing it in the background at home. It does have a very calming and uplifting quality.

It Was All A Dream

A work by Tracey Emin

I had a nightmare the other day. In this nightmare, I awoke from a deep afternoon nap and found our house completely destroyed, our beloved dogs helplessly beaten, and a message on the wall that said: I will make sure that you will never be happy. My boyfriend searched every room for the intruder. "It's happening because I'm happy!" I sobbed, "Maybe... Maybe if I show that I'm unhappy, they'll leave us alone."

I actually believed that this was the only way that I could protect life, as I knew it, from being taken away from me.

And then I woke up for real.

The house was fine. My boyfriend was fine. The dogs were fine. But my existential core was slapped so hard that I found myself crying.

This might sound strange, but I realized that I'm not quite accustomed to things being, well, good in my life. My upbringing was sort of steeped in chaos, so I've been predisposed to thinking that something is always bound to go wrong. I have a twisted relationship with anxiety. I can't tell you how often I've been preoccupied with what might happen instead of enjoying what is happening.

It's no wonder that adjusting to my move has been somewhat of a process. Things have been so good that I can't believe that it's real. Surely, the rug will be pulled out from under me? In fact, come to think of it, I wouldn't be surprised if the intruder in my dream was merely a representation my own self. I am reminded of a scene in Sex and the City: The Movie where Carrie asks Charlotte: "What makes you think something bad is gonna happen?" And Charlotte replies: "Because! Nobody gets everything they want! Look at you, look at Miranda. You're good people and you two both got shafted! I'm so happy and... Something bad is gonna happen."

Of course, I had to have a therapy session with a friend on the phone about this and I couldn't think of who better to call than my friend Amandine. She has had the proverbial rug pulled out from under her before and that's one of the reasons why we bonded so well.

"Your life changed so drastically overnight," she said, with her charming French accent, "We were both working so hard and struggling and being stressed. And now you live in this beautiful place with someone who loves you. Don't think about New York. Nothing changed; it's the same. Enjoy your life. You really should enjoy your life." 

Here's the thing: Even if you live in the most perfect of conditions, in order to fully enjoy it, you have to exorcise all of the insecurities, judgments, anxieties, traumas, and other psychological roadblocks that you've let inform your identity. Like anything else, it's a process. The relationship that you have with yourself is an ever-evolving one. Don't forget to take opportunities to get to know who you really are on the inside, beyond what've you been through. Sometimes a nightmare might just be a wake-up call.