Having lived out of a suitcase for the past few years both in my personal life as a nomad living abroad in Ireland and then in my professional life as a flight attendant based in Dubai, my wardrobe has suffered to say the least. Neglected is probably a more fitting term as the additions have been few and far between and the old favourites worn and weathered.
Now that I am somewhat settled back home into my native Australia (though with one eye cheekily fixed on the horizon to Florence or New York), it is time for a style revolution. One of the most rewarding aspects of growing older is understanding what you like, your personal style and having a sharp eye regarding what will and won’t work on your physique even before hitting the change rooms. To reach a point of aesthetic self awareness has been a long and treacherous journey littered with a myriad of heinous outfits, questionable choices and wasted money, the latter of which pains me the most in retrospect. My ego will heal, my bank account will take time to forgive and forget.
For me I am someone who gravitates towards a neutral pallet, clean lines and affordability mixed in with key investment pieces. Today, as I prepared for brunch and long awaited retail therapy with Mum my outfit exemplified everything that I now seek to personify when selecting my look of the day. As I come into my own as a newbie thirty year old I understand the power of an outfit namely because of the confidence it can instill.
The three pieces that caught my eye today were my sunglasses, jacket and handbag because of the common history they share: I was not their first relationship. The truth is I love fashion but the price tag doesn’t sit well with me given I rather put my funds towards a plane ticket. As such, my shopping habits have been adjusted accordingly so I can have my cake and eat it too. I love perusing markets for vintage finds, exploring designer consignment stores and trolling online websites that sell quality second hands pieces. For everything else I gravitate towards sales, because nothing infuriates me more than buying something full price only to go back a week later and see my item reduced by 50%.
As my wardrobe starts to merge into something I can actually work with it looks cohesive because each piece represents my style aesthetic, but every piece tells a story as to whether they are pre-loved or new. Naturally, who wouldn’t want to be an heiress and afford fabulous things, but let’s keep it real it is simply not within the budget of most people nor mine. Consignment, vintage stores and markets truly bring new meaning to getting the look for less.
The key to purchasing any designer piece online or via consignment stores as seen with my Raybans and Michael Kors handbag is to ensure they are sold with relevant paperwork, original packaging and everything else in between. If necessary additions that secure authenticity are not included, look elsewhere. I assure you when you decide to declutter your wardrobe and sell pieces that no longer represent your aesthetic keen hunters won’t be interested in your designer goodies unless backed up with appropriate documentation. Think long term.
As for my little sleeveless jacket worn, typically I am not a fan of the iconic Australian brand Sportsgirl namely as the brand caters more to a younger demographic. However, two weeks ago I found myself strolling the maze of stores of Sydney’s Bondi Markets and fell in love with the pre-loved clothes available courtesy of young women like myself who use these markets as an opportunity to declutter with financial gain an added bonus. The key to a successful day at the markets is to gravitate towards areas where the vendors potentially match your own personal style and age range. Most importantly do not get caught up in the atmosphere and search for versatile pieces that will compliment existing wardrobe items. What I adore about this little number is knowing I can turn it into a dress with the addition of a belt, killer tan heels and mini clutch or wear it with tailored shorts to create a summer suit.