When I first started college I occasionally babysat for one family that I knew well, you know, to make a little extra spending money and all that. The little boy that I babysat was one of those super adorable and sweet kids that was really fun to hang out with. And the best thing was to watch him open presents. I remember on his fifth birthday, he was just so excited to open each and every present following the cards (at five years old he was way more patient than I am now!) and his reaction to the gifts was just priceless. His thank you’s were over the top dramatic, and his level of surprise as he ripped off the paper was well worth the money spent on those toys. And occasionally, he would come across something he just didn’t really know what to do with. He would open the present, his face would light up and he would say loudly: “WOW, I LOVE IT!!! What IS it?” Yep, kids reactions are pretty priceless.
I love that kid’s reaction to all his presents, and I often feel like I relate with him in a lot of ways! When I’m shopping, I often find that if I can’t initially tell what an article of clothing or an accessory is, I am WAY more fascinated with it than usual. I mean, if I’m puzzled by it, sometimes I want it MORE. Yes, I enjoy the intrigue of a good mystery fashion item. I remember the first time I ever saw wrap pants. I pulled them out of the back bin at the vintage store I worked at, and I was like…”Oh cool, these are…wait…what ARE THEY?” Or that time I found a drapey vest that also became a scarf. Dang that thing was confusing if you got it unwound just right…but boy did I love it. Just because I may not know what it IS, doesn’t mean I don’t LOVE it.
I was at the thrift store the other day and I kept looking at this white thing I’m wearing. Is it a coat? Is it a duster? Is it a dress? WHAT IS IT? I LOVE IT! I think it can be a lot of the above. Which is why, I couldn’t leave it behind. It’s too interesting and strange to be left for people to not understand it, label it as “ugly” and walk away from it, laughing at it. I know clothing don’t really have feelings, but I kind of imagine they do. So I rescue them, regularly. And now I own the dress/jacket/duster/thing with which I will wear in whatever way the mood strikes me.
Maybe it’s the fact that I do enjoy a challenge, or just the level of creativity my fashion choices live at regularly, but not knowing what something is can make it even more interesting and special. Because then, you get to decide how to wear it and there aren’t any wrong answers! Except wearing underwear as shorts. Please don’t do that.