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Wearing Your Clothes Instead of Letting Them Wear You

No one wants to be a glove’s cape.

We don’t talk about it much, but all women are afraid of the day their clothes start wearing them. They glance fearfully at store windows or scroll through online listings, wondering if perhaps the sleeves are too big or the colors too bright.

“Is it too much?” they whisper.

Sure, the peacock blue jacket with the fuzzy lining is dramatic and looks very warm. But it’s also the type of clothing that might turn the tables, given a chance.

This issue isn’t unique to women, but it haunts us the most. Women have fought hard and brutal battles to get where we are today. We can’t afford to lose ground to a sequined ball cap determined to wear on its head. No one has time for that! Women have countries to run, inventions to invent, drains to unclog, brunches to crunch, books to pretend we’ve read, toenails to clip, and ridiculous comedy pieces to write.

We can’t spend a day supporting a shoelace’s bosom.

We can’t afford a year tied around our purse’s wrist.

And jewelry, oh, jewelry can be the worst. It’s always safest to go with a simple pendant. Nothing bigger than your smallest tooth. If it catches the light, if it jingles or jangles, the confident wearer might find themselves forced into living life as tube sock to a string of pearls.

And those sparkly, special apparels… they know! They saturate in our fear, knowing we’ll be drawn in by the details that are just a little too loud. One day we’ll be staring longingly at a full length ball gown, the next day we’ll be that very same ball gown’s vest.

Yes, it’s horrible to contemplate. Men have adjusted by shunning 95% of fabrics, colors and styles. But women are magpies, always drawn to shiny, elbow length gloves.

This is the burden of being female. Sure we get to go to the bathroom together and complain about being paid less than our male counterparts, but there are drawbacks to the female experience.

Like being a sweater’s sweater.

And other women notice when it happens! Men may not care, but ladies stare with pity and fear, knowing next time it could be them. They pull their coats tightly around their shoulders, praying the zipper isn’t too outlandish, that the pockets aren’t too unique.

They promise themselves that next time they’ll buy a drab coat, a homely coat.

A coat that will never betray them.

Because that’s the only way. That’s how you keep the fabric from double-crossing you. Stay away from color. Shun design. Don’t be extra, don’t be daring, don’t take a risk on an embroidered bodice. Instead, embrace the stodgy, the unremarkable, the dim. Only they can be trusted.

If we were meant to wear dazzling headbands, we would have been born with dazzling headbands glued to our heads.

One day, perhaps we’ll have the fortune of living in a world where clothes are no longer necessary, where everyone can go through their lives without having to guess the motivations of their puffer vests.

Until that day, may your shoes be dingy and scuffed.

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Photo by Karina Tess on Unsplash

Written by

Engaged in inadvisable wordsmitheries and other creative acts. http://sarahlofgren.com

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