I remember when I was growing up, probably around middle-school aged, a girl told me that red didn’t look good on me because of my complexion. And because I was too young to know better, I internalized her words and avoided the color red like the plague. I even avoided things that I really liked in red because of what she said. I had this absurd fear that if I wore anything red I would look absolutely ridiculous.
Of the countless reasons why I love fashion, I think the most important one is that fashion helps us bridge how we feel about ourselves internally to our external worlds/environments. I have always used fashion as a way to help me feel better, help me express myself more clearly and help me to learn to love myself. Fashion has always been so much more than “just clothes” to me.
Anyways, as I got older and discovered our sometimes naive way of taking other people’s assessments or opinions of us too close to heart, I realized that I really do love the color red. I love how the color red looks on me. I love red nail polish. I love red lipstick. I love how I feel when I wear the color red. And not out of spite because of what that young girl said, but because red is a color that resonates with me. Just like yellow. And just like black.
I am certain that so many of us walk in the opposite direction of things that we love because we’re afraid that we might look ridiculous or we care what others will think or we haven’t yet found the confidence within ourselves to love whatever it is out loud. However, I’m here to tell you to surprise yourself. Buy the red dress. Wear the Doc Martens with neon laces. Dye your hair blue or cut it all off. Do what makes you happy because you don’t want to look back over your life wishing you’d done what you really wanted to do or worn what you really wanted to wear.
I am so fortunate to know that it is safe to follow what feels good to me. Whatever your “little red dress” hang-up might be, I’m asking you to revisit the beginning of it. The cause of it. Most likely, you’ll find a young or more naive version of yourself taking on the opinion or projection of an inexperienced, unhappy or jealous person either pretending or attempting to have your best interest at heart. And even if it’s coming from someone you love or who you know cares about you, it doesn’t make it true, ESPECIALLY if it truly feels good to you.
So these days, I shimmy around in my little red dresses like the one you see here because it feels good and I feel great. These days I don’t mind making a statement or being a topic of discussion. These days I smile at myself when I see my reflection. These days I feel truer than I’ve ever felt. And I wish the same for you and your “little red dress”.