(Once a month I submit a piece to be published on the blog SaySomethingToo. Each month we are given a topic, and each month we write what ever our little hearts desire - so long as it is on that topic or somehow related. This month the topic was Clothes, which was wonderful! This was my submission:)
For original article go to www.saysomethingtoo.me
Wow. Clothes. Fashion. And yes, SHOES! I am, and always have been, a bit of a clothes nut. From trying desperately to Couture-up the dismal hand-me-downs I was forced to wear while growing up, to spending a few of my magic size-ElleMcPherson years being a clothes horse for the modeling industry, to matching my 30 something self, who is not quite ready to leave my 20 something ensembles behind, to a more ‘mature’ me. (read: short skirts are still short, but no longer belt-like) I wondered with utmost glee what I would write about this month!? I mean I ask you, how can I do justice to this amazing topic? This Holy-Grail of blogging? This place of pure passion! CLOTHES!
A brief history if I may. Whereas my friends had posters of Richard Dean Anderson and a much younger Jonny Depp donning their walls, my teenage wall, roof to floor, was pasted in a perfect check-print of pages cut out of the fashion sections of magazines. Clothes and shoes. When I first started working in an office building, I already had my new work wardrobe planned and laid out before they even called to say I got the job! Clothes and dangerously high heels. When my husband decided to teach me how to fish, I was mostly excited at the prospects of getting a whole new outfit! Clothes and pink rubber fishing boots. Then there was the Sex And The City obsession in the nineties. Was I a daring Carey or a conservatively cute Charlotte? Pretty much all my life has been a never ending line of what shall I wear today? Which outfit, what mask, what fun character am I in the mood to play? Audrey Hepburn in ballet pumps, tights and stripes? Or Marilyn in voluptuous revealing sequence?
Clothes have been such a huge part of my life, my identity, my very core, that the idea of writing about them was somewhat intimidating.
Then, fortunately, the September issue of Marie Claire (SA) came to my rescue. An article titled ‘ME is the new black’ filled me with inspiration. I loved it! It was filled with modern-day truths, not so much about clothes, but about personal branding. And as an ex Brand Manager, this was right up my alley! The new trend that is branding and spreading ones self across the interwebs, was summed up in a phrase I love (and shall steal) by Dion Chang, ‘Techno-Narcissism’.
“Twitter and other social-media platforms give people a sense that their opinions matter more. Before, one used to become aware of one’s own brand when dropping off a CV but now even a nine-year-old can be aware of their personal brand through a Twitter feed.”
The article went on to talk about branding in the fashion industry, and the movement towards personal labels. It got me thinking. Karl Lagerfeld by Karl Lagerfeld. Vivienne Westwood by Vivienne Westwood. Donatella Versace by Donatella Versace. Ralph Lauren by Ralph Lauren. We even have our very own Gavin Rajah creations by Gavin Rajah.
And so (allow me if you will to coin my own phrase) I came up with Textile Narcissism. If Victoria Beckham can do it, why can’t I? Not quite on the same scale as an internationally launched fashion house, but much like the fact that Twitter lives in the back pocket of every tween to adult on the street, PamiPants was born!
|PamiPants Home Edition - schluffing pants|
Now don’t get me wrong. I didn’t mean to and haven’t started my own fashion label. I don’t mean to ever make clothes for other people. And I certainly don’t mean to stop shopping! (Sorry, Husband) But thanks to my excessively long and impossible-to-shop-for legs, my irritation with the fashion that is out there, the quality going down as fast as the price goes up not to mention nothing fits! and to my older and wiser sense of style (no, I will NOT be wearing those butt-cleavage jeans anymore thank you! I prefer to keep my love handles and delicates to myself!) it was inevitable that I would eventually learn how to make my own clothes.
I have been doing just that for the past few months, starting with, of course, the thing I needed the most, long pants. Hence PamiPants. I have had so much fun with this, getting tips off YouTube, asking sales assistants at fabric stores for advice and even plundering my mothers old pattern collection she built as a young adult before babies (the high waisted, super slim, uber long, 70’s flowey pants are AMAZING! I cant wait to try make them.) Each item gets finished off with a pocket that has a simple ‘pami’ embroidered onto it, just to separate my own personal brand from the rest of the pack, and to add a little fun. And, I suppose, to pander to the textile narcissism that this whole project is bringing out in me. Yay clothes!
|Pami pockets - the kitty pajama pants|
|Beach toga for bikini season|
|Extra-long ruffled ankle pami tights|
(You will notice I am working my way up here. Started with easy, stretchy, casual. Then tried my hand at more delicate fabrics. Next I am going to tackle putting in a zip on a garment, my very own jeans and then making a dress! Stand back Christian Dior ;) Wish me luck blog-verse.)
Love, lust and fairy-star-dust