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Fashion and Image. It's never simple is it?

  • Hazel Butterfield
  • 28 September 2016

Regardless of what we feel is irrelevant, there are image issues that many of us deal with, whether it's for our own satisfaction or others. We are told not to obsess about it, but it is not always that clear cut. The next fad, what's on trend is just another way to try and figure out what makes us feel good.

Fashion and Image. It's never simple is it?

Myself, I need to feel I look good for me to have confidence. That involves both what I wear and how I wear it. So fat days involve making sure I hide any proof of that. Which also involves planning an outfit based on what will occur throughout the day. I can't wear a 'skinny' outfit if I know I'm going out to dinner. I'm not a 'one light course' kind of person.

And yet, I try to keep myself fit as I like what that idea means, that you have stamina and self discipline (whether it is true or not). I also like to eat (lots) and drink (not too much!). I need to feel like I've evened things out enough to feel good in my own skin. I love fashion, but it's hard to get excited about it if you don't feel you are looking the way you should. Bobbly bits are harder to shift as you get older *Alert, your go-to outfit no longer works. The realisation that (some) cutesy slogan t-shirts are a no no (I still have some that I deem perfectly acceptable!) *age appropriate alert. Fashion is not able to be my no.1 priority - this makes me cry a little bit inside. A sign of this is when you forget to brush your hair in the morning because you were too busy trying make sure you kid was going to school with trousers on the right way round.

Then, paradoxically, I can't take the praise if it ever comes, as I know I have issues with my weight. I feel it necessary to point out my reality. I do weigh just shy of 11 stone (much to many people's surprise). It is not fake self deprecation. I am a size 10 and I look alright in a sports kit, an 'out out' dress and a pair of skinny jeans, but it's not good enough as I know I weigh more than is expected. How insane is that? I never said mine or many women's ideals of their body is rational.

I actually feel guilty and frumpy just at the thought of not working out for more than 2 days in a row and yet if I realise I have in fact covered 10k+ steps a day and realise that climbing trees with the kids for an hour yesterday (don't judge) was actually probably good for me. My stomach seems to feel tighter and less saggy. My positivity stops me moping and slouching like a grump. Then hey presto, the rolls are back to what I thought they should be if I'd have kept up to my regime.

But then again, ironically, we look the best when we are confident, when we wear whatever clothes we choose with pride.

Recently, I attended a celebrity charity event, I'd been asked to pop along for support. But I wasn't prepared to shine, to have the confidence needed to do my thing, socialise and get myself out there, once I compared my outfits and efforts to others. All the others looked polished and glamorous. They were also obviously there for their media persona, which when you do the likes of Big Brother & Love Island, there is a certain requirement. But then I realised that stilettos, mega blows and white jumpsuits were not the best for an outdoor charity dog show. Yes, I could maybe have worn a better top, but I knew I'd be covered in charity stickers and dog dribble. That's just how I roll.


But looking 'en vogue' isn't alway practical. Fashion evolves with who we are and what we do. Be bold. Know what isn't you anymore. Get it on eBay and get some money for what does makes you feel like a confident you. It's cathartic and economic! I'm especially not a believer in dressing for your age, dress for your personality.


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