Earlier this week I went for a little lunchtime browse in Topshop. I was looking for something in particular and didn’t find what I wanted, but I did see a LOT of other things that I’d like to buy; and it’s the dumbest, most shallow first world problem ever I know, but it was so many things that it was actually quite overwhelming.
Since starting to blog, shopping and searching for outfit inspiration has somehow become a bit stressful. Some of my favourite content on other blogs is fashion content, it’s one of my biggest interests and naturally that makes me want to talk about style too – but how can I possibly keep up with the never-ending list of fashion must-haves that changes from one day to the next on the average twenty-something salary?
It’s not that blogging about fashion makes me feel like I have to spend a lot of money on new clothes to write anything good, because I’ve enjoyed reading plenty of blog posts in the past where the blogger is wearing affordable pieces or old favourites. It’s an age-old problem with me – I’m sure my colleagues will attest to the number of times I’ve come back from lunch laden with shopping bags – and my want to have all the shoes and try all the trends. Based on the amount of clothes many of us have these days it seems to be a common thing. That’s the in crazy consumerist world we live in, I guess? And trying to blog alongside that, particularly with the social media element that goes with it, just amplifies and highlights it further.
I know what you are going to say – you don’t need to buy expensive things to be fashionable, you can buy dupes, you can shop on the high street, you can rewear things, money can’t buy style etc. I agree with all of those, I really do. But there’s no denying that having more than a few pounds left at the end of the month (once you’ve paid for rent, bills, food, car, and any other outgoings) makes it a lot easier to appear to be some kind of style icon than if you’re struggling to afford one £20 pair of New Look shoes or £30 Zara top each time you get paid.
So, what can I do about it? Well, not manage to save any money for the important things in life if what’s happened so far is anything to go by, but that’s not much good.
I’m going to rewear the crap out of the things I buy, something I struggle to do sometimes. I don’t want to properly go into the old rewearing debate because I don’t really have anything new to add; rewearing stuff is great, it’s realistic, it’s absolutely what people should be and are doing. In fact one of my most popular posts so far has been Making my wardrobe work harder; I’ve decided to make this into a bit of a series and see how I can make the most of more items in my wardrobe, so that’ll be my contribution to the rewearing discussion!
I’m also going to make sure that when I’m drawn to something neutral and versatile that will work with loads of things, it comes home with me! That may sound counter-intuitive to attempting not to bankrupt myself by buying all the clothes but when I can create completely different looks with the same item, that’s when I’m interested. That’s why I’m so pleased with this New Look top – the white means it’ll go with so much but the corset lace up elevates it from being a basic white tee. Expect to see this in lots of photos, hashtag sorry not sorry.
Which brings me on to this – I’m going to accept that I just don’t have the means to post a perfect new outfit on Instagram every day and not worry about whether there’s a problem with that. There isn’t, and it doesn’t mean that I’m a fashion failure. I’m also going to remember that many of the bloggers I might see on Instagram ticking off a new trend on a daily basis, have been doing this a long time and have a LOT of followers – so there’s a good chance that a percentage of what they’re wearing and certainly the items they are featuring have been gifted. This might also be their full time job, so influencing the sale of pieces that are available to buy now could very well be paying their bills. Comparison is the thief of joy and all that – now if only I could somehow stop wanting everything in Topshop…
Photos: Rob Poor