Tuesday, September 21, 2010

The Myth of the Little Black Dress

This summer I ran across Carol Tuttle's youtube video and have been reading her books on Energy Profiling and Dressing Your Truth ever since.  After ten years working in a corporate job I was absolutely burned out on fashion and Carol's viewpoint was such a breath of fresh air!  I had already determined that I was basically an inverted triangle shape (which sounds cuter when you say I'm a strawberry shape!).  But I was still struggling with dressing myself and feeling good about the results.  All of this while I was spending $100's of dollars each month at stores like Kohls and JC Penney to boost my wardrobe to match my career level.  My income was a nice windfall for us and I just assumed that EVENTUALLY I would catch up with the constant clothing purchases and have less stress in the mornings.  It never happened.  Instead I felt more lost and invisible.

I began to edit and eliminate using Carol's advice this summer.  It was a kick in the pants!  On her vlog she challenged me to ask myself a simple question.  Did I feel good in black clothing?  Did it make me feel confident and ready to tackle the day?  After a few days of pondering I realized the answer was a resounding NO! 

I began by pulling a few pieces of black clothing from my closet.  Its difficult to explain but it was a physical sensation of lightness - of feeling a weight lifted from my shoulders and my over-stressed mind.  It felt great.  So I went in for more.  And more.  I listed lots and lots of great, nearly new clothes on ebay and sold them all.  It's a shame that I spent my dollars on an extensive coordinating black wardrobe because I was told by the retail fashion industry that it would make me happy.  Shipping those items in neat little packages to new owners was what made me happy!

Now, when I see any fashion advice that begins with black as the essential starting point - I immediately know it was written to influence women to keep buying more stuff!  You know the ones.........the need for one LBD, black slacks, black capris, black walking shorts, black camis, black sweaters, a black blazer, black wool coat, black riding boots, black pumps, black flats.........yes, I had them all and I SOLD THEM ALL!

Try it yourself!  Put black up around your face.  Then try to find yourself!  

Am I in there somewhere?  By using the camera, I can see the black is zapping my skin color - making me look older and WAY too serious.   I can also FEEL the loss of energy when I have it on.  This is not true for all women as you well know.  But it is true for many.  So - what colors make me feel energized and happy?  What makes me feel excitement about my closet these days?  More to come.........

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