1.18.2011

30 for 30 Challenge, or How Not to Go Naked to Work.



It should come as no surprise to any of you that I am a shopaholic.

If you haven't met me, here are the obvious clues:
1. I'm 23 and I'm female.
2. I'm 23, I'm female and I was born in the 80's. We are living in a material world and I am a material girl…
3. I'm 23, I'm female, I was born in the 80's and I live in Chicagoland.

THE POSSIBILITIES ARE ENDLESS AND THEY ARE EVERYWHERE.

But alas, this material girl has had a lot less material to work with in the last few years. I graduated college, got married and our fledgling money tree has a lot of growing to do. My credit card is maxed, my income is minimal, and my hubby and I are learning to live within our means.
So when I stumbled upon a few fashion bloggers in my ongoing quest for creative inspiration, my clothing obsession hit a whole new level. These girls looked so freakin' cute, but I was sure I didn't have the resources to pull that off.

I was wrong. I've recently become addicted to KendiEveryday, a blog that feeds my fashion addiction but also delivers an important message: 

AFFORDABLE FASHION IS ATTAINABLE.

Don't believe me? Check out Kendi's 30 for 30 Challenge, which I am now participating in. The game goes like this: take 30 pieces from your closet, skirts, pants, dresses, jackets, shirts and shoes. Remix only those pieces for 30 days into 30 different outfits. At the end, you'll have a better idea of the staple pieces that your wardrobe might be lacking, and you'll be less likely to impulse-purchase yet another flowy jersey-cotton top from Target's clearance rack.
I know, it sounds a little nuts. Maybe it is. But here's the reason why we think this concept is nuts, or at least, here's the reason why I thought so:

If you're like me, you're the kind of girl that… approximately every 15 days or so goes to get dressed in the morning and stares into the closet thinking, "I might just go naked to work today."

Because nothing fits. Nothing is bright and shiny and new in there. Nothing matches my mood. Nothing says cutting edge. Everything is old and dowdy and overworn.

Here comes trouble in the form of this one thought, "If only I could make a quick trip to Target or H&M…"

Enter Hubby [or sister, roommate, mom, or boyfriend]: "No way can you afford another shopping trip."

And then one of two things happens, and neither are good.

1. I ignore hubby and buy something anyway, wear it repeatedly for two weeks, and then slide back into my fashion funk.

2. I abide by hubby's wishes, wallow in my fashion funk and look like a slob for several days until I finally do all my laundry, find an item I forgot about because it was buried in a pile for 2 weeks, and begin putting effort into my appearance again.

How is this sustainable living? How is this learning to live within my means and be thankful for what I have? How is this using my creativity in all parts of my life? It's not, it's not, it's not. We're only in our 20s, friends. We're going to be forever broke and miserable if we keep doing this to ourselves. [Sounds a little familiar... like I've heard it in the news recently or something, no?]

Fashion, personal style, is more than just the clothes you wear or the latest item you've purchased. It's creativity, and it's confidence in yourself. And it should be created through sustainable means.

I'm beginning to realize that this is how habits change - by challenging ourselves with our own creativity. Whether it's words or clothes or food or design or dollars and cents, we can only realize our potential when we challenge it's limits. It's how we grow.

SO I'm joining the 30 for 30 challenge. I definitely won't be able to post about it every day, or post cute pics of myself in my ensembles, but I'm doing it anyway. Want to join me? Head on over to Kendi's and sign yourself up!

NO shopping for at least 30 days, and no going naked to work. ;)

3 comments:

Kyleigh said...

Bethany,

I swear we have the same mind when it comes to clothes! "If you're like me... No way can you afford another shopping trip." This paragraph just made me crack up because it sounds so familiar.

The 30 for 30 project is a good idea. I think I'll have to try it soon.

Love your posts - I read them a lot. You're so clever and entertaining!

-Kyleigh V.

SallyBoyd said...

Hi Bethany,

This post made me smile. I've been there, standing in front of the closet thinking I'll go naked for the day and then I say to my self "self, you can't go to work naked it's against the law" (and besides who really wants to see anybody naked.)

I'd try this challenge but three things are preventing me from doing so 1) I don't have a job to go to every day 2)I usually wear pajamas all day and 3)I'm just as broke as you - being rich does NOT come with age. :)

This being said, good luck with your challenge. Thanks for posting. Kyleigh said it well, "you're so clever and entertaining!"

Sally

Cheshire Kat said...

I have a funny story about the real song Material Girl. I actually know the person who was the inspiration for the song. No joke! She is the exact opposite of the woman the song describes. Her brother wrote it to make her angry. Ask me about it sometime. :) ~Kat

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