OK. So, I can become very passionate about something (read part 1) to the point of where I want to throw out everything that I’ve ever known and start from scratch again. After finding out that I have 55 slaves that work for me, via the Slavery Footprint web site, it was a little jarring. Then I felt so guilty after watching The True Cost. I felt like I’d rather walk around naked then put on those horrid clothes that I bought from H&M, Old Navy, Gap, Forever 21, anything else from the mall and Target too. I actually went to the mall and into H&M and felt sick to my stomach because I couldn’t stop visualizing the condition that the clothes were probably sewn in. I swore to NEVER EVER EVER under any circumstance buy anything there again.
And then do you know what happened?
I marched right in there the following week and bought a suit for my son’s homecoming dance! Can you believe it?
This is where my desire to do the right thing and real life interesect. They intersect at the two roads Compro and Mise.
How was I supposed to do this thing that weighed heavily on my heart? This is when I had to stop thinking about my failures as a newly informed consumer and turn my attention towards what I had done.
- become aware of something that I no longer wanted to support with my dollars.
- changed my whole attitude towards consumerism.
- actively began seeking alternatives.
- become an advocate for the ethical movement.
- educated my children on this not-so-pretty topic.
- started to care for the women and men that make my clothes.
Here are the last four outfits that I styled with this one dress. Just in case you are new to the party, this one dress was styled 12 different ways. You can catch up by reading about the previous outfits here:
As I promised, I will be sharing about what I learned from this challenge, so stick with me until the end!
Look 9: The proportions of this look work really well, and let me tell you why. If you were to cut my body into 3 equal pieces (1/3’s), you would see that my top 1/3 is the chunky cream sweater, and my bottom 2/3 is the maroon dress and brown tights & boots. In geometry this is called the golden mean, or the golden ratio. I’ll go into this a little more in the future, but for now just know that math is everywhere, even in fashion. Anytime you proportion 1/3 & 2/3 in this way with two colors, you’ll nail the look!
12 ways to style 1 dress consciouscapsule.com
I’ve shared with you that I challenged myself to style the same dress twelve different ways, but I haven’t exactly told you why.
Here’s why. I was seven months into capsule wardrobing, and really getting the hang of things. I had my well-thought out, pared down closet that included key pieces that went with everything. But, something inside of me was itching to find out how far I could push the theory of a basic wardrobe necessity. I kid-you-not that I arbitrarily chose the number twelve because of the twelve days of Christmas. (It was December after all.) Once I chose that number, it was game on! And, if you make it to the end of series I’ll share with you everything that I learned. It is guaranteed to surprise you!
Creating a capsule wardrobe is a creative thinking process. It is a time where you reflect on what is working in your wardrobe and what is not. You ask yourself questions like, why don’t you like to wear this item that you just had to have at the time? It’s also a time to look ahead at where your life is taking you for the next few months. Maybe, you have recently decided to make better choices regarding your health, or maybe a new career opportunity has presented itself. That’s what being conscious is all about. It’s an awareness of where you’ve been and where you are heading. Your wardrobe plays a undeniable part in your life, yet why do some women deny themselves the time to make adjustments? We just keep going, and going, purchasing and purchasing, looking for a cheap deal, and never arriving at any level of satisfaction with our clothing.
I truly believe that stuff doesn’t make me happy, but being inundated with things to buy that promise better, or easier, or healthier is often hard to ignore. When I got to the end of my stuff-buying-and-still-ain’t-happy rope this past summer, I began praying and journaling about what would make me truly content with my wardrobe, and I discovered that my list of “requirements for happiness” had nothing to do with clothes, but centered around giving to others. Giving others of my time, or money, or friendship, etc. is what makes me truly happy. Giving to others is a form of showing them love. How basic is this concept? Love others. I’m pretty sure that’s in the Bible like a gazillion times.
I was still at a loss of how to connect loving others with my wardrobe, which was the cause of my happiness search to begin with. How could I love others by dressing my body? Then I saw the documentary The True Cost being talked about all over the internet, and it changed my life forever. I was now completely aware of where my clothing came from, and how my spending habits, and buying power had NOT been loving others at all.
If you missed the introduction, please visit 12 Days of a Dress so that you can get caught up on what’s going on here. Now, I’m sure you have a few questions concerning this challenge, so let me get these out of the way. By the way, these are real questions that I was asked by my family and friends (in real life, so they are legit!)
- Are you actually wearing this dress every day? Hate to burst your bubble, but NO. I wore the dress 8 out of 12 times. I’m also a stay-at-home-mom so I didn’t need to leave the house every day.
- Did you wash the dress? I washed it and line dried it every weekend. Yes, this gal sweats, and thank you for asking instagram follwer.
- Why are you doing the dress thingy? It began as a personal challenge, and turned into a tool to help empower women on how to be creative with a basic dress, and not feel like they have nothing to wear.
- Will you do it again? Absolutely.
- Did you photograph yourself every day? Nope. My eleven year old daughter graciously shot these photos in front of our house on two different days. She rocks!
Hello! I’m beginning this blog with a challenge that I gave myself to see if I could style the same dress 12 different ways. What began as a personal challenge turned into a way to educate women on how to create multiple looks with the same dress. It turned out to be a starting point for conversations with women about fast fashion, basic wardrobe essentials, finding a dress that suits your figure, and many more thoughtful conversations.
Here were the parameters that I gave myself for choosing the right dress:
- The fabric of the dress must be able to be dressed up or down.
- The fit of the dress had to be basic, and have short sleeves.
- I preferred a bit of an a-line drape because of my figure.
- The dress needed to have a texture.
- The dress needed to land slightly above the knee.
- I wanted a burgandy (red, wine, etc..) dress to wear throughout the holidays.
- I wanted a well-made dress that I could keep in my closet through all of the seasons.