Apr 1, 2014

Pencils, skirts and pencil skirts

“I’d like to wear things that are a bit more classy, a bit more mature,” I said. “Yea, me too,” my friend replied. She was wearing her boyfriend’s jogging pants, whilst I wore a sloppy T-shirt with a picture of a bunny printed on it. Both of us sighed.

Later on, I started wondering what I had really meant. What exactly is “classy” or “more mature”? I turned to my dear old friend, Google. ‘Classy’ brought me Audrey Hepburn in a little black dress, and ‘mature‘ threw Meryl Streep and her pencil skirt in my face. Erm….not exactly what my sartorial soul was longing for. Classic style, as fashion knows it, is typically made of timeless basics: jeans, trench coats, A-line skirts and such. Also the colour black tends to give clothes a classy flair with its simplicity. I know this all too well - for years, I was obsessed with colourless this and that, because black was such an easy choice. However, when I hung out with my friends, who were like the fireworks of fashion in their playful outfits, my own attire made me yawn. I have also had a fling with the so-called classic smart casuals: straight pants, slipovers, white blouses and black heels. Long story short; none of it worked. I am not a serious office kind of a girl with pearls, neither am I a monotonous minimalist. In fact, just thinking about classic items or the ever so smart wardrobe essentials gives me an urge to sit up straight, cross my legs and raise my pinkie ready to grab a glass of wine. However, the truth is that I spend majority of my time sitting in less than ladylike positions, snortling at stupid jokes, tinkering on the floor and drinking tea from a chunky mug that is a far cry from any kind of elegance. Conclusion: the answer to my longing for classiness won’t be found in pencil skirts, but in something that lets me be me without having to be afraid of breaking seams or smudging fine silk.

Magazines keep on praising wardrobe essentials in their collages, but it’s better to think twice before you swallow everything they say. Fashion classics might be universal, but classics of personal style are very subjective. The rebel inside me has come to believe that you can be classy without owning a trench coat or a pair of straight pants. In fact, your classics can be anything you like as long as they make it easy for you to build the rest of your uniform around them. Pencil skirts are fine, but if you prefer keeping your pencils and skirts apart, that’s perfectly fine, too! Flourescent colours and plastic necklaces can be just as essential to you as belted coats are to Vogue.

After running these thoughts through my mind, I might say goodbye to my pyjama worthy T-shirts and pursue something more pleasing to my eye. However, I won’t ditch all my printed tees. Why? Because just as there are days when I would like to have a graceful flair, there will also be days when a bit of funny, printed sloppiness will sooth me like nothing else. Perfect classy-sloppy balance – that’s what’s essential to me! Besides, isn’t there enough of Serious Suit Mentality in the world already?

These are the thoughts I penned down on the pages of Oh Marie! magazine's latest issue. You can find the entire article here.

What about you...? What are your personal "fashion classics"?

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