It just takes one comment
Have you ever noticed how it can take just one comment to ruin an outfit forever?
An example: I was wearing my favourite jeans a while ago. They’re not boot-cut – they’re a full-on flare. But, with hips the proportion of mine, I tend to think the flare balances out my silhouette a little. Kate Moss, I ain’t. In a nutshell, I think they’re my most flattering jeans.
I also feel a little smug about them because I bought them just before I got pregnant with DS, which makes them about five years old, and I do love a bit of longevity in my wardrobe.
So, two summers ago, I was beginning to think they were a bit dated; a bit too on the flarey side; that I may need to downsize the flare to a more subtle boot-cut. But then I wore them on a holiday with my friend A, who is the epitome of effortless style. At the airport, she said how much she liked them. That comment bought the jeans two more years. Every time I doubted them, I remembered A’s comment and strode out full of flarey confidence.
But then I wore the jeans to meet a man. A man who is not DH. A man who has no kids, who dates skinny Russian models young enough to be my daughter, and who has no concept of how (or why) one would balance out a post-childbirth, size 12 hip.
I wore the flares with a Breton top, a jaunty scarf, a wedge and a Prada tote. I thought I looked okay – on the classic side of fashion, but okay for a 42-year-old mum.
“Baggy jeans?” he said, raising an eyebrow (I must point out at this point he was in board shorts himself, but I’m far too polite to pass comment on that. Board shorts!).
But still, with that comment – “Baggy jeans?” – he murdered my flares; he cut them to shreds. I’ve not been able to wear them since.
You see, I may love them, but if the outside world – the world that doesn’t understand the hip-to-flare ratio of a mother – sees them as “baggy” in a world that bows to the altar of skinny, what chance do they have?
Other comments that have decimated my wardrobe/style:
“Those shoes are looking a bit tired these days.” – DH on a pair of my “old favourite” neutral wedges.
“You’re not wearing that dress again?” – Both Gerlie and DD on my seven-year-old black linen maxi-dress, which, to be fair, is now grey and has bald patches.
“I’ve never seen your hair look so awful. It looks like straw.” – My mum on my blonde highlights that went from a few strands of golden to full-on, dried-out, beach-blonde over the course of five years. Needless to say, I’m now brunette.