Clothing vs “The Outfit”

I don’t really do outfit posts on this blog, as a) I’m much more about the text than the photos, b) I rarely snap anything more than selfies of my clothes, and c) how much can you really say about one outfit? OK, so I could meticulously list where I got every item that I’m wearing, but I’m not sure how interesting that would be with my wardrobe. Also, there are many other bloggers out there who do that style of post far better than I ever could! The only time I’ve done outfit posts before is when I felt I’ve had a story to tell – like the dress that made up for the hat I missed out on, and the skirt that was meant to be – but I realised there was space for another type of outfit post on Rarely Wears Lipstick.

As you can see from my Instagram and Twitter feeds, I am quite a fan of the outfit selfie when I’m pleased with what I’ve put together. Recently I’ve been trying to work out what it is that pleases me about those particular combinations of clothes. Why does something I’m wearing make me so happy that I feel I must take a photo of it? I think I’ve got it sussed now. It’s a mostly a combination of colour and accessories.

Colour can sometimes be quite a scary thing to introduce to your wardrobe – especially if you don’t live somewhere like London! – because standing out can be quite daunting. Not everyone wants to be stared at my strangers on the street. Not everyone wants to be described as ‘eye catching’. When we’re going about our daily business, sometimes it’s nice to just blend in. However, that can also be why our clothes occasionally get us down. That dreaded feeling of having nothing to wear often comes from having a wardrobe filled with clothes that don’t excite you, so nothing feels like the right thing to put on when you’re just heading to yet another day at work. However, we spend more time at work than anywhere else in our adult lives, so wearing something that makes you smile as you head to the office can be far more useful than you might first think.

OK, so not everyone gets the chance to wear whatever they want to work, but most people are able to inject a little bit of personality into their office wardrobe. Finding a way to add a splash of colour to your outfit is a great way to ensure you start your day with a smile. Whether it’s a red handbag, a candy coloured necklace or blue suede shoes, bright accessories can really turn ‘some clothes you threw on’ into an ‘outfit’. Pick a colour you like and see how many outfits you could wear it with. I have a great many red accessories and they go with an awful lot of my wardrobe, meaning that coordinating in the morning can be very quick and easy. I usually start with one thing I want to wear, and then build an outfit around that. If I think that I need a scarf or hair flower in a certain colour to bring a whole ensemble together, I make a point of looking for one. That way I rarely have potentially good outfits sat at home unworn, waiting for that missing link.

I’m pondering starting an occasional series on this blog where I share photos of people in outfits they love and ask them questions about what they’re wearing, when/where they got it and what it means to them. After all, everyone has at least one outfit they really love, and clothing isn’t just about what’s fashionable this season. If this is the sort of thing you would like to read or contribute to, please let me know in the comments below. I’d love to see what you all have in your wardrobes.