This post is intended to get me started on a more mindful journey with my clothes, and maybe to serve a bit like a diary and a place to ground my thoughts. It's a bit scary to share this in a well-established community and not feel a bit like an impostor, but you all were so accepting of my first post that I decided to take that leap. As I grow older, I realize that making myself vulnerable and taking risks is what allows me to grow and to connect to other people in a much more meaningful way, so here we go! I took pictures of several outfits I wore this week in order to assess where I am currently. It's kind of like a baseline sampling of things, with several black on black outfits (long-sleeve jersey t-shirts and black skinny jeans) not pictured.

I'm at a style crossroads, as I find that I'm not feeling good about the majority of my wardrobe anymore. It makes me feel drab. I like oversized items, but they tend to come off as sloppy or unbalanced. I'm also struggling with proportion. I made a post about my hair struggles recently where I talk about how wearing it big and curly changes the outfit balance for me, and I'm trying to discover ways to make it work. You all really encouraged me to experiment, and to be more mindful of things like texture and repeating elements, about which I had never thought mindfully before. The outfits here are not really informed by that, but I do have some new ideas for the future.

#1 - This "lab coat" looking jacket was a trial version that I sewed up to see if the size fits and whether I like the style. It's made of cheap fabric, and it definitely feels and looks like it. I like the sillhouette, but this is one of those items that I feel works much better with a sleek hairstyle or when wearing my hair up. Then it makes me feel like a badass evil scientist. I'd like to make this from lightweight linen, so the texture can break up that vast expanse of plain black. The pink jeans are too small, so I'll be destashing them.

#2 - This chunky knit cardigan is quite fun. I paid much more attention to the way the texture complements my hair this time around, and I think it's true. Something definitely clicks. I don't wear bright colors much, but I'm in love with this mustard. I think the proportions in this outfit are very off - extremely top heavy, and then "chicken legs" (no offense to chickens - y'all are rustic chic fabulous! ).

#3 & 4 - I made this dress also, and it's objectively 2 sizes too large. I have been wearing it a lot, and even got several compliments. I did not realize just how big it looked until I took the pictures, and was fairly shocked at how sloppy it seemed in the chest/waist area (see #3). It feels amazing, but I will have to take in the sides for sure. I'm all about the linen wrinkles, but that wrinkly tie is simply unforgivable (I am so sorry, oh fashion gods!). I'm loving the brick red, and realizing that these earth & spice colors start feeling like neutrals to me.

#5-6 - This is the only outfit from the bunch that makes me feel fab. I like how the volume on the bottom balances out the volume on top, and the floaty fabric (or maybe it's the light color?) reduces the potential heaviness of an all-oversized look. Makeup definitely helps to make things feel more polished and intentional. I should wear that red lipstick more often.

#7 and 8 - just pictures to show my body proportions. If anyone has any suggestions for flattering silhouettes for my body type, or colors to try with my skintone, I'd appreciate any insights. I think I'm very low contrast and can look washed out very easily. I plan to get some soft caramel highlights to soften the hair color, as my natural dark color feels harsh against my face. Maybe I'm drawn to black so much to balance it out, I'm not sure. But I'm willing to experiment and figure out what things work better than others, and maybe even understand why!

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