Wednesday, June 30, 2010

My love for vintage and fashion moments that changed my life, Part II

So, at last here comes part two! So get ready for a long read! In case you missed pt I you can read it here!

Yesterday I had a reunion with my old classmates from "high school" (the term does not really apply in Sweden). It has been ten years since we graduated, we were eighteen years old. We were ninteen in our class, all girls. It was a great group and all have grown into fantastic women. Only six of could make it to the reunion since we are scattered all over the globe. We had a great time!

Not unexpected it got me thinking about old times. What is it about reunions that make you evaluate your whole life? Yesterday in the car on my way there, I started thinking. How would I describe my life? What happened the past ten years? What am I gonna tell them? Somehow you just want to be someone, just like in all those silly comic movies about reunions where the characters lie about their achievements. But what is an achievement? Really? Is it money? Is it a fantastic career? Fame?

Isn't it strange that the first question often is, "So what do you do?"? Meaning, so what do you do for a living? Maybe it should be, "Are you happy with life?"?

I just finished reading "For One More Day" by Mitch Albom. A fantastic book about life, death, motherhood, love and everything else human. There was one part that really stuck with me when Chick's (the main character) mom tells him she worked as a cleaning lady to get him through college. His reaction is a feeling of shame. And he tells her: Is that what you always wished to be, a cleaning lady? And her calm response is: I was what I always wished to be, a mother.

In the ten years since we left school and our parental homes behind I have found the love of my life, married him, gotten a master degree, lost both my grand mothers, found new friends, lost friends, worked, given birth to two kids and started to raise them, become a house owner, run my own business, become an aunt, been hospitalized for two weeks and coming to accept that I will probably die here before they figure it out, had surgery, recovered both mentally and physically and my style has evolved and I think it is just becoming more ME every day.

People often refer to style as something superficial, something elaborate we present to the world to create an image of ourselves. I think style could AND should be the exact opposite. Style should come from your core. Style should be an extension of your personality.

When I was in "high school" my family moved from a big town to a small town in another part of the country. We moved a lot when I was a kid because of my dad's job. The town we were moving from was (at least by Swedish standards) rather large and with a lot of diversity. The town we were moving to was a small town. And dare I say, not very accepting...

I have always loved vintage clothes and experimenting with my style. At the school I left different was rule. No one lifted one eyebrow if you turned up one day in pyjama pants and your dad's shirt. I used to dress in long flowing black skirts, jeans, thirties coats, berets and everything I found in a closet at home or at a thrift store. I just wore what I liked and didn't think twice about it. Then we moved. I was stared at. It was like they where all wearing uniform by choice. And I bent. And twisted. And tried to conform. I learned to shut up. I am a major chatterbox. And when I moved two years later to go to university I realized, I had lost myself.

The way back was sometimes painful. I started by throwing away all horrible, boring clothes I had bought even though I didn't even like them. And so the journey began.

So never say style is superficial. It is an artform and tells a story about who you are, who you'd like to be, where you've been and where you're going. And whether you are a person who care about fashion or not your style signals something to the world. I would like to signal hope, dreams and a whole lotta love!


  1. I had a great time reading this and I agree with you 100%. I just hate it when people have their own definition of success and they look down on you or they pity you because you didn't achieve what they thought you should achieve. We all have different goals in life and what's important for us might not be for others. Like you said, style is an extension of your personality. I had to wear school uniform for 12 years and I was so frustrated because I couldn't express myself through clothes. It may sound silly but for me is very important to wear things that reflect my mood.
    I am happy you found your passion for vintage clothes and you found yourself again. I know how it's like to get stares but don't let them bring you down ever again.

  2. Good for you! Great post.

  3. Great post, and great blog !

  4. så fint skrivet! ja visst kan man uttrycka sig med hjälp av kläder och få utlopp för sin kreativitet!
    Jag mår inte heller bra om jag skulle bära tråkiga mainstream kläder.

  5. amazing post! i totally agree with you! personally, i don't pay attention to what people say and even think, but on the other hand it may be frustrating if different people point out what you should do or not because of your social background, sex whatever... the most important issue is to accept yourself as it is!
    ps: i also had to wear an uniform at school... that was a real nightmare, as i felt then that the school is oppressing my identity...

    have a nice day!

  6. everything you said is so true..reunions are somehow intimidating it feels like highschool all over again..
    and about your dad moving alot, well mine as well. it was sort of hard as a teenage having to adapt so often especially style wise. people can be so judgmental and view it as being a fashion victim. so like you I lost myself amongst the crowd. nowadays I try to make bolder choices and just not give a crap. after all those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind :)
    Thanks for sharing this..great post!

    eclectic du jour