For the last 10 years I have dressed as though my happiness depended on it. Because it did.

 

Acceptance was always something that I always struggled with in my early life. My family has always been quite distance and almost unconnected, even when we have been in the same room. The outline of the role each family member ought to play growing up were very faint, which meant in order to be content or better yet thrive, it was truly important to recognise that happiness or security were not going to come by mistake, I had to work for them. 

There was a point in my life where I realised the connection I had to dressing how I wanted to feel. I do not remember when it occurred, nor do I recall it being a catalyst moment, because at the time I didn’t understand fashion. I had too many other worries, to concern myself with pretty dresses and trendy bags. To tell you the truth I don’t remember much of how I felt as a child, good or bad. Because all of it felt so out of my control. 

But, there becomes a point in your life (whether at an age or in a time of dismay) you decide who you want to be. It seems dreadfully impossible to consider it that simple, but it must be that simple, for it is, simple. We decide on days if we want to be happy, uneasy, ecstatic , nervous , restless or short tempered. All of these emotions we possess, locked away in our armoury, waiting to be called on with a moments notice.

In the last five years I have understood the importance of why we wear clothes.

I work most of the time alone, in a dusty warehouse, which naturally doesn’t call for refined, well thought-out attire because it isn’t needed. Or is it. It’s needed for who? For others? We have always been sold the idea of dress for success. First impressions.The idea that fashion can construed an image of your character to another, without you needing to even say a word. 

But what does it do for us? In a world where we are taught to not pay attention to the ‘noise’ and to stay true to our own individual identity, are we considering the importance of dressing for us?

I sometimes dress down for work, not for practicalities, but because to dress in a way that thrills me, distracts me from my work.  How crazy that sounds, but it’s true. I will literally be sitting at my desk thinking filing is below me because my outfit allows me to feel as though I could achieve far more than just recording March’s expenditures. 

We buy mirrors to remind ourselves of our appearance. Every day we glimpse or sometimes even stare at the same image expecting that we will appear different. And we do. But in real terms, we do not. We do not age over night, or over a month for that matter. The condition of our hair, or the shape of our bodies doesn’t change in a short period of time, but we still ensure we take a moment to look at it, and store the memory of how we feel in our minds. 

And when we are not gazing into a mirror or catching a glimpse of ourselves in a well polished window, we are walking around , blissfully unaware of how we look, in what we are wearing. All the time just remembering how we looked the last time we glimpsed. Is it the image we hold onto, or the feeling? Do we not know how we feel? Of course we do, because clothing carries more than just topstitching and frills. It carries emotion. Emotion that literally seeps into our bones. 

I have never responded to basic clothing. But in the same sense, no item of clothing feels basic to me. Everything I place onto my body makes me feel something, its just that some feelings I prefer more than others. Strangely enough , in the last 10 years I’ve found myself dressing for comfort, because I’ve required it. Comfort, it a world that can feel very harsh and unforgiving. 

But mainly I search for confidence in clothing because it’s something that I lacked as a child. I saviour my best pieces, because I worry age and wear may deteriorate their magic. It can’t, or at least I don’t think so, because after all, we decide the emotion we attach to things. 

It can come with wear, but for me its in the first glimpse. After all, most of life is how we think it appears, opposed to how it really is. 

I search for ways to to dress my body, like a window dresser layers silk over the tattered rough edges on a mannequin , because I understand that my self worth and self love are centred around how I feel about myself on any given day. Maybe it shouldn’t be, but I also refuse to spend a lifetime expecting that it doesn’t. Some things you can’t change, somethings you should change, and sometimes the best thing is having the understanding to recognise the difference.

 After all, fashion is there to be used. It resonates with artists and poets, many times often becoming those things in its own right. 

If a piece of clothing makes me feel more like the person I was designed to be, alike a woman who can’t leave the house without a tattooed brow or an acrylic nail, then so be it. 

My body and mind feel bare when they are not adorned by my personality, and my personality is my emotion.

 

Now imagine wearing clothes that make you feel something other than fabulous?

 Fashion plays a vital role in our lives, because it makes us feel in control. Theres always something that has the ability to make me feel more distinct or confident, I just have to find it. Some find Yoga, others find shopping malls, as strange as it may be, both satisfy the craving which is the lifelong effort to find ones true self.

But up until this point, I have been yet to find a swimwear company that places intention and innovation into swimwear. Sure the prints were beautiful, and I liked some of the designs , but I very rarely liked how I felt wearing them.

Whether you use fashion to fit in, or stand out, just remember to consider why. To class its existence as superficial, is only to admit to not understanding its power. 

I have spent a large proportion of the last 2 years trying to discover the need for Monroe. I felt the need for my brand, but I couldn’t construct the words to justify its presence. And then I reminded myself. The most validated , necessary things in life, aren’t things. Monroe Is a brand created for emotion. For depth, for beauty. I design with emotion at the forefront of my mind. Creating pieces that consider, first and foremost how women want to feel. 

Monroe is security. Confidence. Self assurance. Joy. Composure and tenacity.

She is calm, but also bold.

 

 Give strong attention to anybody that makes you warm inside,  or anything.

 But most of all, value emotion. Value its existence. People or things, I don’t believe it much matters. 

 

 

 

Love Kirsty 

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