Episode 1: Skinny with a padded bra…
Once upon a time, a very long time ago in a faraway land lived a girl with a dream …. (haaaaaaa got you with that intro right?) errks. Let’s try this again. I was about 12 or 13 years old when I made the biggest fashion mistake of my entire life. Those days I attended a prominent Convent in South of the Country of Trinidad and Tobago (the Trinidad part) and had just been christened into form 1. That’s like 7th Grade for those not fortunate enough to be born on an island like myself (I tease). Anyway, at the Convent every year there was this heathen of a session called a ‘Bazaar’ which was a day of ‘fun and games’ where family and friends came to your school to play games and spend money that would help go towards some ‘need’ the school had.
“I was the skinniest girl in class and in my group of friends (who were all skinny), flat chested, had a pair of cracked front teeth…”
Honestly the bigger girls never cared for the games and hardly ever brought their parents, bringing instead their boyfriends so they could hit the ‘dollar disco’ in the auditorium to be enlightened in a more minimalistic form as to the joys of adults. Never the less I remember my excitement for my first Bazaar was through the roof and I felt compelled to dress very fashionable because I had so much working against me. I was the skinniest girl in class and in my group of friends (who were all skinny), flat chested, had a pair of cracked front teeth, and a long head of permed hair which everyone swore would break up and fall off. So yes on my journey home from school every day for that week, all the girls would talk about their outfits for the grand event with elaborated excitement. My excitement was however short-lived because my outfit was a simple ensemble that my mom had put together for me (way to make a fashion statement right? Ugh!). Mom totally didn’t get the memo that I sent her in my head about what my definition of a fashionable statement meant, which left my high hopes a bit grim.
“….. I had broken one of fashion’s greatest rules…”
On the auspicious day, I was placed in an Ivory off the shoulder long sleeve top that had a ‘peasant’ girl finish and a bell bottom jean with zebra like stripes at the side that matched the colour of the top with my hair in a fancy hairdo. The sandals, I adored because it was comfortable, brown, strappy, not normal for a girl my age and chic. Kangol hats were in at the time and took our school by storm. There were girls rocking all types of Kangols, from girly pink hues to breezy blues and ‘badman’ blacks. Jeez! It was horrible. The only ones that were allowed a pass of approval in my mind were the white ones. So you can well imagine with this trend being the craze at the time how I must have felt with ‘my look’ and that padded strapless bra my mother made me put on. It was the first time I ever wore a strapless bra and it was the most uncomfortable I had ever been. Needless to say I stepped into that Bazaar feeling rather hideous but being very careful not to show it trying my best to still have a good time, which I somehow did.
In retrospect I feel if I had the chance to do it all again I MIGHT have just worn a retro A- line dress with some converse sneakers and say to everyone “FIERCE HERE DON’T CARE!” However, in analyzing everything NOW, I realize that my Bazaar outfit was not my biggest fashion mistake because the outfit was horrendous; IN FACT it was perhaps one of the most unique outfits there. What made it a fashion mistake was the fact that I had broken one of fashion’s greatest rules which is to always rock whatever you are wearing with boundless confidence. If you believe in what you wear others will believe in it also. I didn’t believe in the outfit’s beauty because I was too caught up with how others might perceive it. Thankfully I know A LOT better now and because of the revelation that came later when I was about 15, by the time I hit University, my life became totally sweeter and better than ever. So always remember, Be Bold, Be Confident and Be you!