This photo shoot took place a couple of months ago, when the temperatures were kind to us and my hair was still on the rogue side of the colour wheel. It’s one of my favourite sessions to date and yet, I couldn’t find the time to sit down and write the words to go with it. I knew I didn’t want to scribble a few sentences here and let you scroll through the images, even though I know that’s what many readers enjoy doing when visiting fashion blogs, that’s what they come here for!
However, I wanted this to be my very own personal ode to fashion, an opportunity to exlore the relationship I have with fashion and the way it has always made me feel in the world, so I hope you guys will indulge me 😉
Many people see fashion as something shallow and frivolous, yet for me it’s a form of art that can speak volumes about an individual’s deep thoughts and personality. In the same way our opinions and dreams make us who we are, and we let others discover who we are by voicing and sharing those opinions, the way we dress and present ourselves to the world tells a lot about us, whether we like it or not.
If I go back to my early childhood memories, I remember my sister and me wanting to dress in the exact same way as to avoid any kind of sartorial envy. My mum usually obliged, so life was easy back then. I remember as well not being particularly fashionable at school, what with my grandma-made knits and quirky outfits, but in a classroom filled mostly with boys it was not really something that would take up much of my time anyway. Then a few more girls transferred to my school and I think that’s when the s**tstorm hit, that and puberty of course (aarrgh!)
Self-consciousness became a big thing and the desire of belonging to a group became THE thing. This translated into me trying to dress like my very fashionable friends, minus the budget or the taste for it, so in the end I couldn’t help but feel like a cheater. I went along with it for a few years until I started my first relationship, which marked a liberating phase in my style that would continue through to college. I believe it was around this time that pertinence to a group went down on my priority list and I stopped caring so much about what others thought of me or the way I dressed. My university years brought back a renewed self-confidence and allowed me to really experiment with my style, from preppy-doll dresses to Converse kicks and baggy jeans on the same week. Those years were a clear reflection of my inner struggle for figuring out the person I was supposed to grow up to be. I didn’t even know what I wanted to do as a profession for the rest of my life, in a time when society expects you to start behaving like an adult, so a part of me was rebelling against it and the only thing that became clear is that I hated to be pigeonholed, style-wise or career-wise. Fashion was a means of expressing that dissatisfaction while allowing myself to become whoever I wanted to become depending on the day of the week.
I’ve noticed that since having a fashion blog, I put quite a lot of thought into my looks and reflect more on how my style speaks about me, but the truth is that, even without having been a loyal Vogue reader or a real fashionista for most part of my life, many of my memorable adult milestones have an outfit to go with them. I remember why I picked those outfits and the way they made me feel. I like to think each one of them told a story about the Saida I was at that particular moment in time, and that somehow other people could read a few lines of that story in order to get to know me better. Of course that’s why our style inevitably changes, because the people wearing it changes so the original stories become different ones…
In a more abstract sense, I’ve come to think of fashion as an art not only for the wonderful craftsmanship that goes into creating some of the amazing pieces we see on the runways each season, or for the fact that it always tries to capture the beauty from the world in order to inspire others to find their own beauty, but also because, like other forms of art, fashion is about emotions.
If we look back a couple of centuries, we can see that Fashion is no longer something static, a dictated canon we all must follow but that proves unattainable most of the time. Far from that, people have realised the potential of this form of art as a means of self-expression and collective empowerment.
Soon after starting on this blogging adventure, I realised that I wanted fashion to be fun for me, that I was willing not only to learn from the big professionals in the industry, but also to explore and break the boundaries of fashion –starting with my own style–, and I believe this has allowed me to become a sort of creator, a role I am enjoying quite a lot if I’m being honest. But if you think about it, we all get to play artists to some extent. You might enjoy recreating some artist’s work in an attempt to improve your technique and skills, or simply because his/her style resonates with you and makes you feel at home, or you might decide to break all the rules and create a whole new artistic expression that only a few will understand but that will portray you at your most raw and real. It doesn’t really matter, as long as it makes you feel confident and empowered, your attitude will do the rest, believe me!
Many people will think fashion is just the clothes we wear because we have no other choice, and that it’s a waste of time and money to worry about such a superficial thing. However I like to think of it as a second skin we get to live in, so we better have fun and make the most of it!
Our very own magical cloak that gives us the power to speak without saying a word, to change colours according to our mood, to make us stand out or become almost invisible, to identify with a similar tribe or create our own little world… the possibilities are all there for you to explore, so don’t be afraid of doing so, guys and gals!
So there you go, glamistas, a personal ode to the magic of fashion, which probably captivated me many years ago without me even noticing, until one day I felt the need to discuss it weekly with the whole of the Internet 😀
I don’t know if many of you will feel the same way about fashion, but I hope you enjoyed this post and that you keep on creating beautiful pieces of art with your style and attitude, to keep us all inspired, to keep us all empowered ♥