Tuesday, May 31, 2011

5 Reasons Why I Want To Be Buried In A Blazer

Quick. You're on a deserted island with only one article of clothing. What it is?
The one go-to staple of my wardrobe is...
My personal favorite professional article of clothing?

Blazer, blazer, BLAZER.

There are not enough words in the world for me to share my love for the blazer with. When I look at clothes, particularly secondhand clothing, I see their histories within the threads. Behind the seams. Embedded in the buttons and stitching. Someone loved that article of clothing once. Loved it till it was worn thin or washed so many times it shrunk and couldn't button anymore. But they still kept wearing it, unable to fully part just yet. So much occurred with that blouse, those jeans, that jacket! We all know that there comes a time to fold it up neatly and offer it up to Goodwill...but on the way out the door with a pile of clothes to give away, we quickly stuff that single piece under our beds instead of giving it away.

After all, parting is such sweet sorrow.
Those jeans made our ass look fabulous too. Can't give that up.

I went through my old clothes yesterday to decide which ones to give up and which ones to keep. A shift has been occurring in my wardrobe recently, as spurred on by a trip to the Ann Taylor LOFT on Friday. I take how I'm seen in the workplace seriously and some of my old Forever21 stand-bys have admittedly seen better days. The LOFT reminded me of just how much some of my wardrobe needed to be updated into the professional 20-something look. For example: the silver threaded and gray pencil skirt I held in my hand at the LOFT was an investment. It would take my current silver skirt with the foil flowers and kick it to the curb. The new skirt fit better and went from day to night perfectly. It was an update on a skirt I liked and would be much more impressive to wear with clients (and I've been meaning to phase that foil flower skirt out for awhile now but do you know how hard it is to find a decent pencil GRAY skirt in the 18-22 inch length range without spending a fortune or finding poorly sewn on buttons? It's like going on the quest for the One Ring.)

My sense of style is forever evolving, as it should with everyone. What we wore when we were 13 we probably wouldn't have worn at 16. Or how we dressed at 18 is probably a far cry from being in your 20's. Some people are blessed with innately keen great style from the get-go and may not experience this problem. Others, like me, spend a lot of time trying out different styles to get to the one that suits them the best. But no matter who you are, what race or clothing size or height, even with buckets of confidence or oodles of cash, the one question you always wonder aloud at home and in the store dressing room remains the same:

"How do I look?"

The one article of clothing that I've never had to wonder that question aloud with?

The blazer.

Blazers do crazy things to and for me. When wearing one, I feel strong and in charge. I know exactly how to handle and complete the project in front of me. I can lead a meeting in front of a crowd or give a presentation and know everyone is paying attention, front row and center. I can step up to a guy and not even have to say a word to get his attention- the rolled up sleeves have done that for me. When I see a guy wearing a blazer, my levels of respect for him go up dramatically. He could be the king of the douches, but I will remember him fondly for having a sharp set of threads. Kings of douches are often easily overshadowed by their beautiful blazers.

Or in mathematical terms: B.B. > K.O.D.

My mainstay blazer is a black silk one that I've had for almost a decade. I bought it in high school on sale at Dillards and have been wearing it ever since. The label is I.N. San Francisco- a nice foreshadowing to my future love for the city. I can't even read the size tag anymore, that's how worn thin it is. I love this blazer to death and try to incorporate it into every outfit I wear. Since its purchase, I've added a couple other blazers to my closet, but none of them have had the history that this one has.

We've been to the moon and back, this blazer and I, and not one item in my wardrobe knows me better (though my red trench coat comes in at a very close second place). Till death do we part, and here's 5 reasons why.

1) Looks Perfect with ALL Articles of Clothing

Jeans, shorts, skirts, tights, slips, dress trousers, leggings.

There is not one bottom it won't complement to take the look upscale or casual. Button the buttons if so desired- leaving them open looks fine just as well.

2) With Blazers, There Is No "The New Black"

I like them in black for classic purposes. Also in my millions of attempts to resurrect one of my favorite looks of all time- the le smoking tuxedo suit from Yves Saint Laurent that appeals highly to my minimalist sensibilities.

I also like ivory, teal, navy, dusty rose, and sequined over-the-top blazers. Black is great for commanding attention, but sometimes you just want a simple touch. A teal-colored blazer with a fun floral printed skirt, flats, and hair done up in maiden braids is ideal for a casual afternoon on the weekends with friends. Colored blazers can dress up a look as much as down and with black blazers, the same rule applies.

3) Like a Marionette With Strings

When I put on a blazer, I feel like a puppet with strings that have just been pulled on. The fit makes me sit a little straighter, makes me hold my head a little higher, draws attention to my neck and shoulders. It's hard to find a lot of jackets that can do this. With the exception of trenches, I don't know of any other outerwear that does this!

Also this is going to sound weird but I imagine that the blazer would make an open casket wake situation for me appear quite tidy and pulled-together.

I spent a lot of this long weekend watching repeats of Six Feet Under on HBO. Ain't no shame in thinkin' ahead.

4. You Can Really Go All Out With Accessories

This is really important, this reason right here. So many accessories are BFFs to the blazer. We're talking headbands, scarves, necklaces, pins, sunglasses, etc. One accessory if by minimalist, two if by statement. Not a lot of jackets allow for you to pair accessories by all types with them which is what makes the blazer infinitely incredible.

And finally, one of the best reasons possible, again no matter who you are...

5. There Will Never Be An Article of Clothing A Guy Wears More That You Will Immediately Want To Snatch From Him And Wear Forever

They do not call it the "boyfriend blazer" for nothing!

Love to you all,


Jennifer Fabulous said...

I freaking LOVE this post! I agree on so many levels.

First, it is so difficult for me to part with my clothes, even if I don't wear them anymore. I always find some stupid sentimental value to keep them. I'm going to follow in your footsteps this week though and seriously force myself to find an armful of items for my parents' garage sale this weekend. :P

Also, my favorite item of clothing is my blazer as well! For all the reasons you mentioned. My standard black blazer (which I got at Target two years ago) can be casual or dressy. It always makes me feel more mature and sophisticated for some reason. It's a real confidence booster!

We're so awesome it kills me.

The Andrewmeister said...

A good quote from my personal favorite film of all-time, "The Fisher King," actually relates to blazers....
Robbin Williams tells Jeff Bridges about the three things every person needs in this world:

1 -- Respect for all life.

2 -- A good bowel movement every now and then.

3 -- A navy blazer.

Personally, I don't know if I really meet any of his recommendations, but I still take note of your blazer-related corraboration in this blog entry....

I shall keep it in mind for future decisions.

Cara-Mia said...

I love blazers, but cannot pull them off. I have incredibly narrow shoulders, even for someone my size I think, so they rarely fit right. I'm interested in trying J Crew's petite blazers, but I just haven't done so yet. :)