Iím proud to say that I am not a slave to fashion. Unfortunately, though, one of my friends is. Do I like shopping for the latest fashions? Of course. I like new things and I like to try on clothing that is stylish and looks good on me. Thereís no question of that. The problem for my friend, letís call her Liz, is that she is truly a slave to whatís new and what she perceives as the best fashions to own.
makes for a cruel master. The whims of fashion are always changing and brand names are being flashed right and left as the It brand to buy. How can you be truly in style if you donít own a belt by this company or a purse by this one? Are your jeans this particular brand? Who designed that jacket? Itís a world that is constantly shifting and trying to stay on top can be dangerous. Itís inevitable that you make a misstep along the way, and making a fashion faux pas for someone who lives and breathes styles and brands is hugely embarrassing.
Looking Your Best
Liz tries to argue with me sometimes that buying the latest trends and owning certain brands of everything is the only way to really look her best. She feels very strongly that certain brands of clothing are better than others, and that it would destroy or at least seriously scuff her image to show up at school in clothing she bought at a discount store or shoes she picked up at a warehouse sale. Her clothing have symbols and designs on them that mean a lot to her, and probably mean a lot to others, but frankly I donít see what the big deal is. You can easily look great in clothing styles that are not name-brand. You donít need the most expensive designer for everyday items. A white shirt is a white shirt. Jeans are jeans. Who cares what the label says?
The Fashion Slave
I wouldnít mind Lizís fashion obsession as much if she seemed to be content and happy with her lifestyle. However, she doesnít always seem to feel that way. Iíve seen her turn down chances to hang out with friends because she canít afford to go where weíre going. Sheís spent her money on boots she wears maybe once every six months. Sheís afraid to go anywhere outside where she might get her beautiful clothing dirty or possibly lose an earring or the like. She reads fashion magazines to the exclusion of just about everything else, so there isnít much you can have a deep conversation with Liz about, unfortunately.
Liz always looks great and well groomed. She is impressive in her knowledge of the brands and designers, and someday she will likely be very successful in the fashion industry. I just wish for her sake, and perhaps for mine, that sheíd just relax for a day, come to school
in sweats and a ponytail without any brand names on anything so that she can just enjoy the life of a laid back teenager.