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do you shop for your REAL or IMAGINARY lifestyle?

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Aug 4, 2011, 3:55pm   #1
ladysarah's Avatar
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ladysarah
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I just wonder if I am the only one. Do you ever look at your wardrobe (closet for the US ladies) and wonder: who on earth lives here and what did I buy this for? Do you ever shop for a thinner imaginary self? Or for someone who goes to a lot of evening GALA events and lives in a hot climate, while in reality you live in Alaska? (that's me! huge summer wardrobe - I live on London aproximately 5 sunny days a year...)
Aug 4, 2011, 5:08pm   #2
C
CowPrincess
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Originally Posted by ladysarah
I just wonder if I am the only one. Do you ever look at your wardrobe (closet for the US ladies) and wonder: who on earth lives here and what did I buy this for? Do you ever shop for a thinner imaginary self? Or for someone who goes to a lot of evening GALA events and lives in a hot climate, while in reality you live in Alaska? (that's me! huge summer wardrobe - I live on London aproximately 5 sunny days a year...)
I used to buy fantasy shoes. Shoes that, the moment I tried them on, inspired visions of walking down the streets of Rome, or being outside on a moonlit night at the Banff Springs Hotel, or just running across the street to sit on Waikiki Beach. I know exactly where you are coming from

I have fantasy autumn jackets. When purchased, I pictured myself enjoying the sunny, brisk autumn days, walking along the streets, feeling quite stylish and enjoying the scent of burning leaves and the touch of chill in the air.

We get approximately ZERO autumn days each year. But I have great jackets if we ever do get one!
Aug 4, 2011, 5:15pm   #3
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BasketballCourt
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Wow, I was just thinking about this. I'm a college student in the Midwest, but I much prefer the wardrobe of a twenty-something on the East coast to sweatpants and flip flops. So technically I suppose I should be buying practical clothes, but I find myself wanting the sequin shorts, silk blouses, etc.
Aug 4, 2011, 5:21pm   #4
h
hopeful_27
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I have a closet full of clothes that still has tags on them. I know this might sound dumb but i tend to buy clothes that is so pretty but yet I can not picture myself wearing it...

I also have other clothes, that I'm thinking... wth was I thinking..
Aug 4, 2011, 5:30pm   #5
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Candice0985
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I buy clothes that suit my lifestyle, but at the same time I make sure there is a bit of whimsy in them or something that suits my style.
i'm 25 and 2 years inot my first "career" job I work in the watch and jewellery industry but I hate wearing suits and heels, so I wear dresses 24/7 because I love them, with blazers or belted cardigans. tights and ballet flats....my new favorite pair are black leather miu miu's with crystals and a leather bow on the toes

so I guess i'm practical because I want to be able to wear my purchases, but I definitely buy what I want to buy...not what i'm expected to wear.
Aug 4, 2011, 5:48pm   #6
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Rubypout
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Oh I was totally so guilty of this a few years ago! I had a wardrobe full of dresses for nights out or like I was going to be in a episode of TOWIE (if you live in London you'll know the programme) but in reality I was working in a primary school.
Admittedly I still have mega amounts of heels, but I've since quit working in a school so hopefully I'll get more wear out of them.
Love this thread I thought I was the only one haha
Aug 4, 2011, 5:49pm   #7
amacasa's Avatar
amacasa
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i tend to be romantic in many ways combined with rock and roll sometimes.. haha but having three kids and a full time job, pragmatism needs to set in.. but i refuse sometimes..
so i have the most romantic clothing - one shoulder, chiffon tops , with loose hanging soft pieces and pair them with jeans and balenciaga bag so i won't look too lost in a fairy tale world... I have a lot of motorcyle jackets... all of my romantic and rocker chic clothes though are for vacation only - a lot have TAGS in them!

I work in a conservative office - so im always in proper trousers and lady like skirts that i love but i find boring... these are the ones that gets to be used all the time...

I think its okay to have some dreamy clothing with tags as who knows if one day you will be needing them...

In cruise ships, you have 2-3 days of formal nights during dinner.. perfect chance to wear these clothes by the way!!!
Aug 4, 2011, 5:57pm   #8
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explorer27
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I'm painfully practical!

My "fantasy life clothes" are very wearable and aren't elaborate...just effortlessly chic and more about the environment and joie de vivre.

Think Jackie O on a boat in Capri....or a chic 1960s "Ali McGraw in a trench" look.
Aug 4, 2011, 5:57pm   #9
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being.myself
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Wow... I've never kept anything in the closet unworn with tags on. I can't imagine doing that. I own two expensive-ish dresses, bought knowing that I hardly ever get the chance to wear them... but that's as far as it goes. I like to be able to stun on occasion even though these occasions are few and far between.
Aug 4, 2011, 6:11pm   #10
a
aquabliss
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Originally Posted by ladysarah
I just wonder if I am the only one. Do you ever look at your wardrobe (closet for the US ladies) and wonder: who on earth lives here and what did I buy this for? Do you ever shop for a thinner imaginary self? Or for someone who goes to a lot of evening GALA events and lives in a hot climate, while in reality you live in Alaska? (that's me! huge summer wardrobe - I live on London aproximately 5 sunny days a year...)
I think this thread asks one of the most clever questions! I've been thinking about this pretty much lately, and you know what? Your imaginary lifestyle does not have to contain galas or some stylish events every night. Sometimes (OK, many times) it seems so meaningless and also hard to wear one pair of simple high-heeled pumps in a crowded city, on a casual day, I begin to think my whole wardrobe serves to an imaginary lifestyle.

Clothes and accessories are making life worth living and I adore them! But sometimes life seems not worth it. I go back home at the end of the day and find myself thinking "So I was soo chic today, so what..?" Oh God I didn't want to sound so melancholic, sorry :( But am I alone?
Aug 4, 2011, 6:17pm   #11
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Rubypout
Shoe Addict
No Aqua I hear where your coming from. Some days I look in my wardrobe and think right this is all too good for where I'm going. My other half is always saying "we are only going to..." whilst I'm standing there in 5/6 inch heels.
As long as what you wear makes you feel good, who cares if anybody else noticed or whether you were best dressed in the room. Enjoy what you've got :)
Aug 4, 2011, 6:32pm   #12
a
aquabliss
Member
Originally Posted by Rubypout
No Aqua I hear where your coming from. Some days I look in my wardrobe and think right this is all too good for where I'm going. My other half is always saying "we are only going to..." whilst I'm standing there in 5/6 inch heels.
As long as what you wear makes you feel good, who cares if anybody else noticed or whether you were best dressed in the room. Enjoy what you've got :)

Thanks, I'm relieved a bit. Really. You're right. And just one more thing, I think it's not that I want people to notice me or I want to be the best. I want everyone to care, to try to be elegant. People's lack of elegance is tiring me and at the end I am the one feeling overdressed only because of heels. OK, I have a problem and I'll try to get over this! :)
Aug 4, 2011, 6:40pm   #13
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Allisonfaye
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What a great question and yes, I do this to an extent. I live in a cold climate much of the year but I can't wear any wool except cashmere and most sweaters are not made of cashmere or I don't want to wear it with my young children. I do tend to buy too many summer tops for nights out.

I did also accumulate a winter wardrobe that includes fleece shirts because they are the only thing I stay warm in and snow boots that are not hideous to look at.
Aug 4, 2011, 6:58pm   #14
TJNEscada's Avatar
TJNEscada
Member
Great thread! Yes I am guilty of this - especially with shoes. I've killed myself a few times walking around San Francisco in giant heels that are really more suited for my imaginary limo and chauffer that's dropping me right at my desitination ;-) The lack of elegance comment really stuck a nerve, I was at the theater a few weeks back, in Manolos, Missoni and a cute Burberry trench and I was surrounded by some real slobs in outfits that were shamefully inappropriate for the venue. And I thought, wow, no one cares about looking good to attend this beautiful event, in my parents day people really new how to dress!!
Aug 4, 2011, 7:28pm   #15
S
Sunshine Suz
Member
^^ The theatre had gotten so casual. I can understand toning it down for a matinee vs. a evening performance, but people come in jeans, shorts, whatever. I was taught to dress up when going to events, so I do, even if I am the only one in my group who does.

re: Real vs. Imaginary life.

1. I have held onto clothes that I have not fit in for years because I love them and planned to lose weight. (I have lost 35 lbs since October but some of these require at least another 35 more.)

2. I have also bought some professional clothes in the last two years even though I am a SAHM. I really love them but rarely have a chance to wear them. I do plan to go back to work, for the right opportunity, so somehow I felt the need to be prepared.

3. I have bought at least 20 silk scarves (maybe more like 30) in the last 2-3 years, most of which I have never worn or worn once.

5. Purses - thanks tPF! Like many of tPF, I go into the rush of excitement and kept buying and buying. Many I had to have and then either never used them or used it only a few times. I love the idea of having all kinds of options, yet I tend to be someone who only changes my bag every 3-6 months or for the day when I need a small cross body for a particular activity or event. I have not gotten to the point of getting rid of some of them but I will need to. They are taking up a lot of room and emotional energy.

So yes, ladysarah, I do get it. The items in my closet that are worn regularly are obviously the ones that are for my real life.
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