Friday, September 19, 2008

Recession Chic

"There are no ugly women, only lazy ones."

Helena Rubinstein, a Polish-American philanthropist and cosmetician, said this, and I agree.

In our current recession, there may be a temptation to dress down and not focus on something as frivolous as your appearance. Avoid this temptation if you have a job and want to keep it. How you present yourself at work is one of many ways to tell your employer that you take your job seriously.

I saw a woman on the train today wearing a periwinkle fleece track suit. That is not just out of style, it is butt ugly. Unless she was about to teach gym in a very cold building, this is entirely inappropriate for ANY job (yes, this includes stay at home mommying).

Back to black, back to basics, blah, blah, BLAH. Dressing in times of financial decline is not an excuse to wear something as ugly as a track suit or anything as boring as all basics in all black. What it can mean is a great opportunity to look at what you have and 1) shop in your own closet, and 2) evaluate what you really need (versus what you want, such as yet ANOTHER pair of knee high black boots).

Shop Your Closet
If you have ever read a fashion magazine, you have heard this phrase. What it means to me is that you reacquaint yourself with what you own and see how many different ways you can wear it.

For example, I am in a major I Must Buy New Fall Dresses mindset right now. However, on looking at the dresses in my closet, I realize that I already own at least 4 fall-appropriate dresses and 2 or 3 others that can be adapted for fall. So I really have 6 or 7 already. This doesn't mean that I won't buy any new ones this year, but it does mean that I now realize what I actually have and see that my dress situation is not nearly as dire as I thought it was.

This brings me to my next point...

Evaluate what you really need
In my example, this means that with the several dresses I can adapt for fall, I see that I will need tights and a cardigan to bring the short-sleeved dresses into the new season. I can evaluate my sweaters and tights to decide what will be necessary to not freeze while wearing my beloved (and I DO love them) dresses.

My point?
Instead of 5 or 6 new dresses (can get expensive quickly!), I actually need 1) 2 pairs of tights,
2) 1 cardigan, and 3) POSSIBLY 1-3 new dresses.

And look, we did all that without talking about basics and black. Woo hoo.

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