Sitting in traffic on my way to the city, something I have been doing a lot lately as I buy for fall, I began thinking about that scene in “The Devil Wears Prada.” You know, the one where Andy (Anne Hathaway) snickers while Miranda Priestly (Meryl Streep) decides between two belts that look ridiculously similar, or so Andy believes.
“You think this has nothing to do with you,” Miranda remarks before explaining how the “lumpy” blue sweater Andy wears trickled down to her as a result of decisions made by the very people standing in the room.
Although Andy may have thought she was the only one involved in her purchase of that blue sweater, she wasn't. Others were guiding her toward how she could express her personality, even if, as Miranda points out to Andy, it were to tell the world that she takes herself too seriously to care about what she puts on her back.
Unlike Andy, I always cared what I wore, even when I was not looking or feeling my best. I realized pretty young how fashion lifts me up, even when, especially when, I feel down. Think back to a time when you weren’t looking or feeling as well as you wanted, such as right after giving birth. Sure, it’s easier to say you’ll go shopping after losing 15 lbs, or even five. I know lots of people who think this way. But while we are waiting to lose the weight, or for our hair to grow in from that last bad haircut, or for the bonus check that may or may not come at the end of the year, we don’t feel our best doing what we are doing right now, which is living our life.
Whether we work outside our homes, are stay-at-home moms, are waiting to meet Mr. Right, or are happily single, our lives take us to many places each day, not all of them glamorous. That, however, shouldn’t matter. From the grocery store to yoga class to the beach to lunch to dinner to the comfort of our own home where we lounge out on our patio or couch listening to music sipping our favorite wine, we should feel good about ourselves and the way in which we spend our time.
I agree with Miranda’s thinking; the fashion world dictates the trends we see at the highest levels. Where I part ways with her and lean more toward Andy’s way of thinking has to do with how Andy views fashion as “stuff.” For me, fashion is as much about making a statement and taking ourselves seriously as it is about the stuff and not taking ourselves seriously at all. There is a happy medium, which is where the stuff comes in, those fun, trendy accessories that can instantly and inexpensively transform any look and a mood with only a small investment of money.
The best part is, stuff never goes out of style, especially when we buy according to those trends that are actually already part of our individual look. When we purchase that bracelet, bag, or belt, we do it not because it's “in style” but because we love those accessories and can see ourselves wearing them with a dress or jeans, at different times of day and year, and in various places for a lifetime to come. These pieces become a part of our private collections, and as we wear them, our memories – that trip to wine country, the Hamptons, the city. Yeah, it may be a pile of “stuff.” But it’s our stuff, and we love it. I love it. And I take seriously my job, which is to bring you the latest fashions and, most importantly, the power to make them your own.
Doni Feinberg Landy, Esq. is a mom, entrepreneur, store owner, lawyer, blogger, talent manager/agent, bag lady, and jewelry junkie.
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