I once asked one of my fashion forward friends how she does it. Giving me a sly grin she said, “I’ve spent most of my youth agonizing about the way I look. I was raised by my mom, who was very particular about how her children presented themselves. I’ve surrounded myself with books, magazines, television programs and friends, who have all help me to mature my style. For me, my style is the way that I express myself.” Cool, I asked her if she could mentor me so that I could discover my inner fashionista. She looked me up and down and said, with a sympathetic smile, “Honey, I think there is nothing wrong with the way you dress. Your style is a reflection of you. Some people are just plain.” To this day, I still take that as a back handed compliment. But that doesn’t mean I don’t try. Three and a half years ago, I went to Europe, by way of Amsterdam. I noticed that all the residents and European tourist alike were walking around with some glamorized version of the parachute pants. You know, the extraneously baggy pants popularized by M.C. Hammer? Apparently they were all the rage in Europe and just a few days before my arrival, I had already started seeing glimpse of the return of the pants on a few celebrities. I thought this would be my shot. I snag a pair here and be among the first in my neighborhood to rock them. Those pants are still taking up space in my closet. I just never had the confidence to wear them. I guess my friend is right: some folks are just destined to be plain janes.
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